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Oliver Newman

Health, Safety and Environmental Careers Yield Positive Results

May 2014

Do you sometimes wonder where you are going with your health, safety and environmental career?

If your answer is yes, read the following facts extracted from recent research by *IEMA, *NEBOSH and *Health and Safety at Work publication to reassure you and shape the direction in which you are heading.

Employers now see health, safety and environmental management as more of a strategic role essential for companies to remain competitive in the current climate. ”Health and safety is now recognised as a core management skill particularly in organisations with high standards of governance,” comments CEO of NEBOSH, Teresa Budworth.

Salaries are on the Increase

The better qualified the health and safety/environmental practitioner, the higher the annual salary they attract

As the economy is now in recovery, the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) and KPMG’s new report confirmed that permanent employees' wages rose at the sharpest level since July 2007 with full-time workers’ salaries increasing at its fastest rate. What does this mean for people in health, safety & environmental roles? The better qualified the health and safety/environmental practitioner, the higher the annual salary they attract. This is illustrated in NEBOSH research where the average top-end salary for jobs where a NEBOSH Diploma and CMIOSH were specified was up to 3% higher than last year; similarly there was also an average 3% pay increase for 59% of environment and sustainability professionals in 2013.

Job Satisfaction and Security is on the up

Two thirds of IEMA members surveyed reported high levels of satisfaction for environment and sustainability roles. Those who were “career changers” so started professional life in non-environmental roles are even more satisfied to have made the change, with 70% reporting levels of satisfaction.

Health and safety practitioners feel at least fairly secure in their current roles with over three-quarters of all respondents say they are either “quite” or “very” secure.

Professional Development is Essential

The recent tough times have led to a greater demand for higher level qualifications if you want to forge ahead with your health, safety and environmental career:

  • Almost half of IEMA Members surveyed, have at least a Master’s degree as their highest academic qualification with a fifth moving into a more senior role than the previous year.
  • More employers now require health and safety managers to hold at least a degree equivalent to the NEBOSH National Diploma. Almost half of job adverts ask for NEBOSH Diploma compared to a third last year.
  • There is a rise in demand for higher level professional status such as Chartered Membership of the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (CMIOSH) in job applicants.
  • Environmental professionals’ salaries increase with the higher levels of IEMA membership.

Go Global with your Health, Safety, and Environmental Skills

Britain has one of the best workplace safety records in Europe, so it is no surprise that UK-based health and safety professionals are in such high demand across the globe.

The prospering economies, buoyant industries and, high profile world events make the Middle Eastern region an attractive location as it will be benefitting from economic investment and growth.

Add New Skills to your Existing Portfolio

Barely a week goes by without employers highlighting the limitation of skills shortage and more roles now demand a broader skillset. Environmental management has become an additional skill required for health and safety roles featuring in two thirds of health and safety job adverts and, quality assurance was mentioned in 20% of roles in NEBOSH’s research.

80% of people who now take a NEBOSH General Certificate level qualification are employed in roles whose principal responsibilities are not health and safety, from operational managers to finance managers.

Brighter Future for Health, Safety and Environmental Roles

More attractive, varied jobs are starting to emerge for health, safety and environmental professionals as the economy now shows positive growth trends.

Make your continuing professional development essential. Keep updating and adding to your skill set as a health, safety and environment career is looking to be a stable and bright beacon for your future satisfaction and security.

Research used was:

  • *IEMA 2014 Annual Practitioner’s Survey of members;
  • *NEBOSH’s Annual Jobs Barometer 2017;
  • *Health and Safety at Work’s online survey of 1007 practitioners, conducted during the fourth quarter of 2013.

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