It is important that you understand the requirements needed for your company to become SECOR certified, and familiarize yourself with the process we have in place to help you prepare.
Before you get started, first ensure your company is eligible. SECOR is limited to an employer that has no more than 10 employees at any given time. We cannot accept an application for SECOR for employers with more than 10 employees. If you have more than 10, you will need to apply for a COR instead.
As a precaution to the rapidly evolving COVID-19 situation, the Alberta Construction Safety Association (ACSA) will only accept emailed SECOR submissions. We will no longer accept paper submissions or USBs mailed to the office.
For information on how to submit your SECOR Evaluation, please see “Submitting your Evaluation” below.
The Small Employer Certificate of Recognition (SECOR) program is a way for small employers to improve their health and safety performance, create a workplace culture of proactive health and safety, and reduce the risk and costs associated with workplace incidents.
With a validated health and safety management system, your company can identify and assess your workplace risks, then systematically control hazards to protect your employees. This ongoing process will allow you to build a workplace culture of proactive safety complying with occupational health and safety (OH&S) regulations and promoting continuous improvement.
To qualify for the SECOR program your company cannot have more than 10 employees at any given time within the past 12 months. Included in this number are all staff covered under your WCB account (for example, this includes owners, managers, clerical or administrative staff, part-time workers, temporary staff, family members and volunteers.)
Steps to Take
The process to obtaining a Certificate of Recognition for small employers is as follows:
- Your company will be required to have an active Alberta WCB account.
- Ensure your company has an ACSA Membership.
- A full-time employee at your company must complete the following SECOR courses (Note: it does not have to be one person completing all three courses, each course can be divided among several employees):
- Small Employer Health & Safety Management (SECOR) or Principles of Health & Safety Management (PHSM)
- Standard First Aid (SFA)
Please visit the Government of Alberta website for approved first aid training facilities. ACSA now offers Saint John Ambulance first aid training at the Edmonton, Rocky View, and Fort McMurray locations.
- One of the industry-specific safety training classes
- Construction Safety Training System (CSTS)
- Roadbuilders’ Safety Training System (RSTS)
- Electrical Safety Training System (ESTS)
- Pipeline Construction Safety Training (PCST)
- Develop and implement your health and safety management system. Once the program is in place and you have gathered a minimum of three months’ worth of health and safety documentation, you will complete the SECOR Evaluation Tool (refer to the Downloads section on this webpage).
Once a SECOR is achieved, it is typically valid for three years. In the interim two years, the company will have to complete a SECOR maintenance on the SECOR evaluation tool in order to maintain its SECOR certification and be eligible for the PIR refunds.
Submitting your Evaluation
Effective March 14, 2020, the ACSA will only accept electronic SECOR submissions. We will no longer accept mailed submissions (paper or USB).
If a company does not store their documentation electronically, they will be required to scan it so it can be submitted electronically. All submissions must be well organized, labelled, and easy to navigate. Best practice is to have one folder for each element and to save documentation in the corresponding element’s folder. All attachments/documents must be labelled appropriately and easy to identify. The evaluation tool should be kept together as its own document.
When completing the evaluation, please read the question and program guidelines carefully and submit only what is being requested. Submitting more documentation than is required may result in your SECOR submission being returned to you.
When a question requests a sample, submit only enough to demonstrate that you are following your Health & Safety Management System (HSMS). This could be one or two documents per month for the year, or one or two documents per week for the busiest three months of the year. If more documentation is required, the Quality Assurance (QA) Analyst will request it.
When you are finished the evaluation, you can submit your evaluation either by
- Emailing a compressed (zipped) folder to email@example.com, or
- Saving the submission online (e.g., Dropbox, OneDrive, Google Docs, etc.) and sending a download link to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have any questions regarding the submission of your SECOR Evaluation, please contact the COR department.
SECOR Continuing Education
Every three years, at least one full-time employee must complete an ACSA course to remain eligible for SECOR. This maintenance requirement is no longer restricted to the assessor, and the list of ACSA courses is no longer limited.
It is the company’s responsibility to be up-to-date with the SECOR training requirements at the time of evaluation.
The individual who completes the Evaluation Tool is known as the assessor. This person can be internal or external to the company and must have a certificate in Small Employer (or Principles of) Health and Safety Management. This training is required of the assessor even if there is someone else in the company who holds this course for the regular Training Requirements.
If an external assessor is chosen, the company will still need to have on the payroll a full-time employee holding the required training.
Legislation Requirements by Industry
As part of a health and safety program, your company will need to ensure your employees are aware of the legislation that is applicable to the work they are performing. The Small Employer Evaluation Tool requires companies to attach a list of relevant sections, or parts of the occupational health and safety legislation that apply to their workplace, and work activities.Click here to access sample information for your industry code.
Please note: These documents are guidelines only. Employers have a responsibility to assess all applicable occupational health and safety legislation for the tasks they are performing.