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Become A Safety Officer

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Working As A Safety Officer

  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards
  • Getting Information
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Training and Teaching Others
  • $67,709

    Average Salary

What Does A Safety Officer Do

Occupational health and safety specialists analyze many types of work environments and work procedures. Specialists inspect workplaces for adherence to regulations on safety, health, and the environment. They also design programs to prevent disease or injury to workers and damage to the environment.

Duties

Occupational health and safety specialists typically do the following:

  • Identify hazards in the workplace
  • Collect samples of potentially toxic materials for analysis
  • Inspect and evaluate workplace environments, equipment, and practices for compliance with corporate and government health and safety standards and regulations
  • Design and implement workplace processes and procedures that help protect workers from hazardous work conditions
  • Investigate accidents and incidents to identify their causes and to determine how they might be prevented
  • Conduct training on a variety of topics, such as emergency preparedness

Occupational health and safety specialists examine the workplace for environmental or physical factors that could affect employee health, safety, comfort, and performance. They may examine factors such as lighting, equipment, materials, and ventilation. Specialists seek to increase worker productivity by reducing absenteeism and equipment downtime. They also seek to save money by lowering insurance premiums and workers’ compensation payments and by preventing government fines.

Some specialists develop and conduct employee safety and training programs. These programs cover a range of topics, such as how to use safety equipment correctly and how to respond in an emergency.

In addition to protecting workers, specialists work to prevent harm to property, the environment, and the public by inspecting workplaces for chemical, physical, radiological, and biological hazards. Specialists who work for governments conduct safety inspections and can impose fines.

Occupational health and safety specialists work with engineers and physicians to control or fix hazardous conditions or equipment. They also work closely with occupational health and safety technicians to collect and analyze data in the workplace. 

The tasks of occupational health and safety specialists vary by industry, workplace, and types of hazards affecting employees. The following are examples of types of occupational health and safety specialists:

Ergonomists consider the design of industrial, office, and other equipment to maximize workers’ comfort, safety, and productivity.

Industrial or occupational hygienists identify workplace health hazards, such as lead, asbestos, noise, pesticides, and communicable diseases.

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How To Become A Safety Officer

Occupational health and safety specialists typically need a bachelor’s degree in occupational health and safety or in a related scientific or technical field.

Education

Occupational health and safety specialists typically need a bachelor’s degree in occupational health and safety or in a related scientific or technical field, such as engineering, biology, or chemistry. For some positions, a master’s degree in industrial hygiene, health physics, or a related subject is required.

Typical courses include radiation science, hazardous material management and control, risk communications, and respiratory protection. These courses may vary with the specialty in which a student wants to work. For example, courses in health physics focus on topics that differ from those in industrial hygiene.

High school students interested in becoming occupational health and safety specialists should take courses in English, math, chemistry, biology, and physics.

Important Qualities

Ability to use technology. Occupational health and safety specialists must be able to use advanced technology. They often work with complex testing equipment.

Communication skills. Occupational health and safety specialists must be able to communicate safety instructions and concerns to employees and managers. They need to be able to work with technicians to collect and test samples of possible hazards, such as dust or vapors, in the workplace.

Detail oriented. Occupational health and safety specialists need to understand and follow safety standards and complex government regulations.

Physical stamina. Occupational health and safety specialists must be able to stand for long periods and be able to travel regularly. Some specialists work in environments that can be uncomfortable, such as tunnels or mines.

Problem-solving skills. Occupational health and safety specialists must be able to solve problems in order to design and implement workplace processes and procedures that help protect workers from hazardous work conditions.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Although certification is voluntary, many employers encourage it. Certification is available through several organizations, depending on the field in which the specialists work. Specialists must have graduated from an accredited educational program and have work experience to be eligible to take most certification exams. To keep their certification, specialists usually are required to complete periodic continuing education.

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Safety Officer jobs

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Safety Officer Career Paths

Safety Officer
Operations Manager General Manager
Area Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Operations Manager Plant Manager General Manager
Chief Operating Officer
11 Yearsyrs
Safety Manager Human Resources Manager Project Manager
Construction Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Maintenance Supervisor Field Engineer Assistant Superintendent
Construction Superintendent
9 Yearsyrs
Maintenance Supervisor Self-Employed Food Service Worker
Food Service Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Safety Engineer Project Manager Property Manager
General Contractor
6 Yearsyrs
General Manager Operator Foreman
General Superintendent
11 Yearsyrs
Safety Coordinator Safety Manager
Human Resources Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Captain Security Officer Loss Prevention Agent
Loss Prevention Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Safety Specialist Project Manager Engineering Manager
Manufacturing Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Construction Manager
Operations Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Safety Coordinator Operations Manager
Plant Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Program Manager General Manager
President Of Operations
11 Yearsyrs
Safety Supervisor Safety Manager Human Resources Manager
Program Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Safety Manager
Project Safety Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Program Manager Technical Director Carpenter
Project Superintendent
10 Yearsyrs
Program Manager Management Consultant Senior Consultant
Risk Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Captain General Manager Security Officer
Security Director
10 Yearsyrs
Safety Supervisor Operations Manager
Senior Operations Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Safety Specialist Specialist Warehouse Associate
Warehouse Manager
5 Yearsyrs
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Average Length of Employment
Safety Director 4.2 years
Safety Manager 3.8 years
Safety Instructor 3.7 years
Safety Trainer 3.7 years
EHS Specialist 3.4 years
Safety Coordinator 3.3 years
Safety Engineer 3.3 years
Safety Supervisor 3.1 years
Safety Specialist 3.0 years
Safety Officer 3.0 years
Health Officer 2.9 years
Safety Inspector 2.8 years
Safety Consultant 2.6 years
Safety Advisor 2.6 years
Safety Analyst 2.5 years
Safety Person 2.4 years
Safety Technician 2.4 years
Safety Assistant 2.0 years
Top Employers Before
Supervisor 6.0%
Internship 5.8%
Technician 4.1%
Manager 3.9%
Instructor 3.9%
Officer 3.9%
Cashier 3.6%
Top Employers After
Officer 4.5%
Supervisor 4.1%
Manager 3.6%
Technician 3.4%
Consultant 3.0%
Owner 2.9%

Safety Officer Demographics

Gender

Male

75.1%

Female

22.6%

Unknown

2.3%
Ethnicity

White

77.9%

Hispanic or Latino

12.2%

Asian

6.9%

Unknown

2.0%

Black or African American

1.0%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

57.4%

French

8.4%

German

6.4%

Italian

3.2%

Mandarin

2.8%

Polish

2.8%

Arabic

2.8%

Japanese

2.4%

Carrier

2.0%

Chinese

2.0%

Cantonese

1.6%

Portuguese

1.6%

Hindi

1.2%

Russian

1.2%

Tagalog

1.2%

Korean

0.8%

Filipino

0.8%

Irish

0.8%

Swedish

0.4%

Romanian

0.4%
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Safety Officer Education

Schools

Columbia Southern University

18.5%

University of Phoenix

16.4%

The Academy

5.7%

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Daytona Beach

5.2%

Texas A&M University

5.2%

Eastern Kentucky University

5.0%

Community College of the Air Force

4.4%

Ashford University

3.6%

Central Texas College

3.6%

Pennsylvania State University

3.6%

Liberty University

3.4%

Kaplan University

3.4%

Michigan State University

3.1%

Grand Canyon University

2.9%

Naval Postgraduate School

2.8%

Southern New Hampshire University

2.8%

Excelsior College

2.8%

American University

2.6%

Florida State University

2.6%

Old Dominion University

2.6%
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Majors

Business

20.5%

Criminal Justice

14.2%

Occupational Safety And Health

6.2%

Management

5.8%

Nursing

5.7%

Public Health

4.9%

Medical Technician

3.8%

Education

3.5%

Biology

3.5%

Psychology

3.4%

Health Care Administration

3.3%

Environmental Science

3.2%

Fire Science And Protection

3.1%

General Studies

3.0%

Chemistry

3.0%

Homeland Security

2.9%

Aviation

2.9%

Electrical Engineering

2.8%

Environmental Control Technologies/Technicians

2.4%

Liberal Arts

2.0%
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Degrees

Bachelors

33.9%

Other

26.8%

Masters

17.3%

Associate

11.2%

Certificate

5.9%

Doctorate

2.4%

Diploma

2.0%

License

0.4%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Safety Officer Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Principal, Clinical Safety Officer Edwards Lifesciences LLC Irvine, CA Oct 08, 2015 $175,000
Principal, Clinical Safety Officer Edwards Lifesciences LLC Irvine, CA Aug 10, 2015 $175,000
Clinical Safety Officer The Global Alliance for TB Drug Development Inc. New York, NY Oct 10, 2016 $100,000 -
$140,000
Diving Safety Officer Conservation International Arlington, VA Jun 15, 2013 $87,500
Centrifuge Safety Officer Separator Technology Solutions Us Inc. San Francisco, CA Jan 03, 2012 $81,393
Assoc. Patient Safety Officer & Chronic Disease Co New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation New York, NY Apr 28, 2011 $75,670
Patient Safety Officer Glen Oaks Nursing and Rehabilitation Centre, Ltd. Northbrook, IL Aug 25, 2016 $73,024
Patient Safety Officer Glen Crest Nursing and Rehabilitation Centre, Ltd. Chicago, IL Aug 25, 2016 $73,024
Patient Safety Officer Glen Bridge Nursing and Rehabilitation Center Niles, IL Aug 25, 2016 $73,024
Patient Safety Officer Chicago Ridge Nursing and Rehabilitation Center Chicago Ridge, IL Aug 29, 2014 $68,975
Patient Safety Officer Glen Health and Home Management, Inc. Skokie, IL Aug 29, 2014 $68,975
Patient Safety Officer Glen Bridge Nursing and Rehabilitation Center Niles, IL Aug 29, 2014 $68,975
Patient Safety Officer RREM, Inc. Chicago, IL Aug 29, 2014 $68,975
Patient Safety Officer Family Healthcare, Inc. Chicago, IL Sep 17, 2014 $68,975
Patient Safety Officer Glen Lake Terrace Nursing and Rehabilitation Cente Waukegan, IL Sep 12, 2014 $62,610
Patient Safety Officer Glenshire Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, Ltd. Richton Park, IL Oct 01, 2012 $60,544
Patient Safety Officer Balmoral Home, Inc. Chicago, IL Oct 01, 2012 $60,544
Patient Safety Officer Glenshire Nursing and Rehabilitation Center Richton Park, IL Oct 01, 2012 $60,544
Patient Safety Officer RREM, Inc. Chicago, IL Oct 01, 2012 $60,544
Patient Safety Officer Glen Bridge Nursing and Rehabilitation Center Niles, IL Dec 01, 2011 $60,544
Patient Safety Officer Regency Rehabilitation Center Niles, IL Oct 11, 2011 $60,544
Patient Safety Officer Glencrest Nursing and Rehabilitation Center Chicago, IL Oct 01, 2011 $60,481
Assistant Biological Safety Officer University of California, Los Angeles Los Angeles, CA Sep 01, 2010 $57,000
Assistant Safety Officer The Rockefeller University New York, NY Dec 01, 2014 $56,500
Safety Officer Miles0McClellan Construction Co., Inc. Greensboro, NC Nov 30, 2009 $55,000
Patient Safety Officer Chicago Ridge Nursing & Rehabilitation Center Chicago Ridge, IL Sep 04, 2010 $54,053
Patient Safety Officer Balmoral Home, Inc. Chicago, IL Sep 07, 2010 $54,053
Patient Safety Officer The Grove at Lincoln Park Chicago, IL Sep 10, 2010 $54,053
Patient Safety Officer Norridge Health Care & Rehabilitation Center Norridge, IL Sep 11, 2010 $54,053
Patient Safety Officer Morris Healthcare & Rehabilitation Center, LLC Morris, IL Sep 17, 2010 $54,053

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Top Skills for A Safety Officer

SafetyProceduresPersonalProtectiveEquipmentOshaEmergencySituationsSafetyProgramFacilitySafetyTrainingWeeklySafetyMeetingsSafetyInspectionsHazardousMaterialsSiteSafetyRiskManagementCorrectiveActionsSuperviseRiskAssessmentsSafetyPoliciesSafetyIssuesCommanderCustomerServiceSafetyAudits

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Top Safety Officer Skills

  1. Safety Procedures
  2. Personal Protective Equipment
  3. Osha
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Developed policy regarding safety procedures and compliance with Army regulations.
  • Supervised 210 personnel, demanding consistent usage of personal protective equipment and safety procedures.
  • Initiated and ensured corporate and OSHA compliance.
  • Perform hazardous tasks such as exertion during emergency situations.
  • Monitor the implementation of and compliance with Safety Program and Management Plans in Public Schools.

Top Safety Officer Employers

Safety Officer Videos

Safety Officer video resume

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