Federal Safety Officers

The Federal Safety Commissioner has the power to appoint Federal Safety Officers (FSOs) under the Building and Construction Industry (Improving Productivity) Act 2016 (the Act).

They act as third party auditors, conducting on-site auditing of builders seeking accreditation or who are currently accredited under the Scheme.

FSOs measure compliance in a number of key areas, including:

  • implementation of WHS management systems
  • implementation of the scheme WHS focus points
  • the ability to identify and manage scheduled risks and hazards
  • monitoring the implementation of any performance improvements identified during the auditing process.

The Federal Safety Commissioner is also a Federal Safety Officer, appointed by the Minister for Workplace Relations.

What are the powers of Federal Safety Officers?

The Act provide FSOs with powers to undertake audits to ascertain compliance with the conditions of accreditation. FSOs will are required to comply with any directions of the FSC. Refer to Fact Sheet: Powers of Federal Safety Officers for further information.

How do we ensure consistency across Federal Safety Officers?

Federal Safety Officers (FSOs) are appointed following a tender and selection process which includes an evaluation of the qualifications and experience held by the applicants. They are required to comply with the Federal Safety Officer Code of Conduct and the APS Values.

Once appointed, FSOs undertake an induction course and receive ongoing training to ensure audits are conducted in a consistent manner. Forums are held twice a year and are an opportunity for FSOs to discuss issues, lessons learnt and positive experiences with the OFSC.

We also provide an audit feedback questionnaire to companies following all audits. This provides you with an opportunity to comment on the audit process, including FSOs, so that we can continue to refine and improve the audit program.

The FSC strongly encourages companies to speak to OFSC staff if there are any concerns about the audit process, including issues with consistency or the conduct of FSOs. Feedback is treated in confidence and will not impact on a company’s audit results or accreditation status. If you have any concerns about any aspect of your audit process you can contact your OFSC audit contact officer or call the FSC Assist Line on 1800 652 500.