Obtaining a Certificate of Recognition (COR) is a sizeable undertaking for organizations. The complete process takes most employers approximately two years, though this will vary based on how effective and well-documented their occupational health and safety management system (OHSMS) is. So, is COR worth it?
The main benefit to becoming COR-certified is that it has been proven to reduce workplace injuries and time-loss claims.
In a study led by Dr. Chris McLeod from the University of British Columbia, it was discovered that firms in Ontario with COR™ certification experienced significant improvements in their safety performance. The study revealed a noteworthy 28% decrease in the rate of lost-time injuries and a 20% reduction in high-impact injuries when compared to similar-sized non-COR™ certified firms operating in the same sector.
Learn more about the methodology Chris McLeod and his team utilized in conducting their research on COR™ in this IHSA podcast.
There are several financial incentives for employers to obtain a Certificate of Recognition (COR) for their occupational health and safety (OHS) program, depending on the jurisdiction in which the employer operates.
Premium rebates: In some provinces, such as Alberta and British Columbia, employers with a valid COR may be eligible for premium rebates on their workers’ compensation board (WCB) premiums. The premium rebate can vary depending on the jurisdiction but can be as high as 20% of the employer’s annual WCB premium. Here’s how that might look in real-terms:
For example, the average Oil and Gas salary is close to $100k and so a drilling company with 100 employees:
Lower WCB premiums: Employers with a valid COR may also qualify for lower WCB premiums than those without a COR. This is because having a COR indicates that the employer has a robust and effective OHS program, which can lead to fewer workplace injuries and illnesses and lower costs for the WCB.
Reduced liability: Employers with a valid COR may be able to reduce their liability in the event of a workplace injury or illness, as they can demonstrate due diligence – i.e., that they have taken reasonable steps to prevent workplace hazards and promote a safe working environment.
Competitive advantage: Employers with a valid COR may have a competitive advantage in bidding for contracts or attracting new customers, as COR certification indicates that the employer has a strong commitment to workplace safety and health.
The most important financial incentive for having a COR is that in many provinces in Canada, having a COR has become a common requirement for employers in the oil and gas and construction industries. However, this is not a universal requirement across all provinces or industries.
In Alberta, for example, some large oil and gas companies require their contractors to have a valid COR as a condition of doing business with them. In British Columbia, some government and industry organizations similarly require their contractors to have a valid COR.
In the construction industry, some provinces have also made COR certification a requirement for certain types of contracts. For example, in Ontario, companies bidding on certain types of public infrastructure projects may be required to have a valid COR as a condition of the contract.