If you have a contractor working for you, then both you and the contractor will have duties under health and safety law. This also applies when a contractor employs subcontractors.
When employing contractors you should:
- select a suitable subcontractor – ensure they have sufficient skills and knowledge to do the job safely and without risks to health and safety
- assess the risks of the work – the level of risk will depend on the nature of the job. Whatever the risk, you will need to consider the health and safety implications
- do a risk assessment – you and the contractor should be aware of its findings. You should already have a risk assessment for the work activities of your own business. The contractor must assess the risks for the contracted work and then both of you must get together to consider any risks from each other's work that could affect the health and safety of the workforce or anyone else
- provide information, instruction and training to your employees. You should also provide any information to contractors on the risks from your activities and the controls you have in place. It may also be beneficial to consider, with the contractor, what instruction and training contractors will need
- set up liaison arrangements for co-operation and co-ordination with all those responsible to ensure the health and safety of everyone in the workplace
- decide what you need to do to manage and supervise the work of contractors and agree the nature of the controls before work starts
Contracting construction work
If you are contracting construction work you have duties as a client under the Construction Design and Management Regulations 2015 (CDM).
A client is anyone who has construction work carried out for them.