Workers in this sector are involved in assessing work places and practices to ensure they are safe. They are responsible for ensuring that all safety legislation is adhered to and policies and practices are adopted. They help to plan, implement, monitor and review the protective and preventative measures that companies are required or choose to follow, and work to minimise operational losses, occupational health problems, accidents and injuries.

The Health and Safety Executive, whose role it is to prevent death, injury and ill health in Britain's workplaces, has general information on what it is like to work in the sector, as well as advertising vacancies.

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Jobs and salaries

Get more information about the Health and Safety profession by looking at the IOSH (Institution of Occupational Safety and Health) website, including their forum about careers in the sector.

Find out how much you could earn as a Health and Safety Professional.

Read more about Health and Safety risk management in the construction industry on the APS (the Association for Project Safety) website.

Risk management is the process which aims to help organisations understand, evaluate and take action on all their risks with a view to increasing the probability of their success and reducing the likelihood of failure. 

Routes and qualifications 

It is not necessary to have a degree to work in this sector, however there are a range of courses you can take to further your career, and it is becoming more common for graduates to be entering the workforce.



Funding and support

Bursaries are available for those already working in the field of occupational health and safety to take their first steps towards a possible career in occupational hygiene.

Career Development Loans are another option, and if you are planning on undergraduate study in this sector, check out the pages on student finance from, and/or contact the funding or careers departments of the organisations you are considering training with. 

What’s it really like working in this sector?

  • Take a look at our three videos from people talking about their careers in the health and safety profession.
  • Find out the answers to some questions commonly asked about a career in health and safety, given by two professionals working in the health and safey sector.
  • Jobs usually involve a combination of office work and on-site evaluations.
  • A degree of travel involved, usually to clients premises or to assess specific locations.
  • Read what it is really like to be a health and safety officer
  • has information on available jobs and general job descriptions 

How many jobs are there in this sector?

The chartered body for health and safety professionals, IOSH (Institute of Occupational Safety and Health), has 36,000 members.

Location, location, location

Work is available throughout the UK however job opportunities are more concentrated in cities and areas with heavy industry.

Will a career in this sector suit me?

  • An accredited degree/HND in occupational safety, life science, engineering and health studies can increase your chances
  • Good communication skills are essential, as explaining problems and negotiating safer practices with clients are a key part of the job
  • Relevant work experience, for example interning at a local council’s health and safety office can enhance your application
  • Experience of working in the areas you’re assessing is also often essential.