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Best Risk Assessment Templates

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Published September 18th, 2020

What is a Risk Assessment Template?

A risk assessment template is a tool used to identify and control risks in the workplace. It involves a systematic examination of a workplace to identify hazards, assess injury severity and likelihood, and implement control measures to reduce risks. A risk matrix is used to assess the consequence, likelihood, and overall risk rating of a safety hazard.

Who Uses Risk Assessment Templates? 

Employers may have in-house safety officers who have the right knowledge and credentials perform risk assessments on a set schedule, or when it is deemed necessary. They can also choose to hire a third party risk consultant to perform the assessment if no in-house safety officers are available. Ultimately, it is the employer’s responsibility to make sure thorough risk assessments of their equipment, workplace, and tools have been performed by competent professionals before operations can commence or resume. Learn more about how to perform a risk assessment by reading our guide.

Top 3 Reasons You Should Perform In-house Operational Risk Assessments  

Operational risk assessments can be outsourced to risk professionals, or done internally. While outsourcing can save your team the time and effort, performing in-house operational risk assessments can bolster your company’s culture in a number of ways: 

Enable workers to be proactive rather than reactive
When the improvement of safety in the workplace falls on the shoulders of your workers instead of a contractor, workers are motivated to be more vigilant and careful. A proactive approach to safety pays dividends in the long-run since the majority of workplace injuries are actually preventable.

Reinforce responsibility and accountability within the company 
When workers are obligated to look out for one another’s safety through in-house operational risk assessments, the habit and culture of responsibility and accountability is reinforced. This can then spill over to other aspects of operations, impacting productivity, and transparency between employees.

Promote transparency and collaboration against operational risks and beyond
In order to identify, evaluate, and control operational risks, teams need to be open, honest, and transparent with their activities and processes. Only by getting an accurate picture of your day-to-day operations, can effective and realistic risk control measures be implemented.

Writing a Risk Assessment

Writing a risk assessment report can be a daunting task considering life and limb may rely on its implications. Fortunately, by knowing where to start, you can make the process of writing risk assessment reports easier. Before writing your risk assessment, something to keep in mind is the format of your report. The format will serve as the outline of the risk assessment.

What is the correct format for writing a risk assessment?

There is not a single risk assessment format that will fit all use cases. Risk assessment templates may vary widely depending on factors such as the nature of operations, its size, and in some cases, specifications set by official governing bodies. Regardless of your risk assessment format, however, the following information should always be present:

  • Who is at risk
    It is important to specify the demographic that is at risk of an identified hazard. Is it the plant workers? the workers in the assembly line? The engineers? Knowing which party is at risk gives you a good starting point to come up with an effective risk reduction initiative.
  • Current control measures
    Find out and include what the organization is currently doing to lower the risk of injury for identified demographics.
  • Necessary improvement/changes to control measures
    After going over the current control measures, come up with ideas on how they can be improved or replaced to further lower the risk of injury for identified demographics.
  • Assignments and deadlines
    Finally, once decisions have been made to improve and/or replace control measures, include the names of personnel who will be responsible for the updates along with clear deadlines. This simple practice helps improve accountability and diligence.

Writing the Title Page

The title page should include the preliminary details of a risk assessment report. The essential details to include are outlined below:

  • Who prepared it?
    This could refer to the name of an individual risk assessor, or the company/team working on the risk assessment report. Including this information helps with accountability.
  • Who is it for?
    This helps ensure that the report reviewer is reading the correct file. Indicating what or who the risk assessment is for aids in evaluating the validity of its contents.
  • Done on
    The date in which the risk assessment and the report were completed. It should be indicated if the actual assessment and the completion of the report were done on separate dates.
  • Review date
    This indicates a specific date set for reviewing risk assessment protocols. Time frames may vary, with some choosing to review their risk assessment protocols every six months and others doing it annually. As a general rule, a risk assessment review must be done whenever significant changes are made to operations such as the introduction of a new process, or the acquisition of new machinery and equipment.

Writing the Main Body

The two types of risks are physical, and substance risks. Slips, trips, falls, getting caught in between machinery, and injuries due to falling objects all fall under physical risk. Injuries due to toxic, flammable, and caustic materials are covered under substance risks. You may choose to list these risks separately or in the order in which they were identified.

Risk Assessment Recordkeeping

A good safety recordkeeping system is needed to help organizations keep track of hazards, risks, control measures, and corrective actions. Beyond complying with regulatory authorities a good risk assessment system can help identify hazard trends and proactively improve workplace safety.

Risk assessment apps and cloud software can replace existing workflows involving paper forms, spreadsheets, scanning and faxing. iAuditor is the world’s #1 inspection software and allows you to:


Katrina Watson

SafetyCulture staff writer