Free OSHA Consulting

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has an On-site Consultation Program that offers free and confidential advice to small and medium-sized businesses in every state, with priority given to high-hazard worksites. In the past fiscal year, the On-site Consultation Program conducted about 30,000 visits to small business worksites covering over 1.5 million workers across the nation.

The On-site Consultation services are separate from enforcement and do not result in penalties or citations. The program is state-run but federally funded. Consultants from state agencies and universities work with employers to identify workplace hazards, provide advice on compliance with OSHA standards, and assist in establishing injury and illness prevention programs.

OHSA identifies the benefits of the On-site Consultation as:

  • Reducing worker injury and illness rates
  • Decreasing workers’ compensation costs
  • Improving worker morale
  • Increasing productivity
  • Recognizing and removing hazards from the workplace
  • Improving safety and health management

The process starts with a phone call, e-mail, or request. The employer is expected to correct any serious, unsafe, or unhealthful working conditions discovered by the consultant within a reasonable time frame.
The OSHA consultants will:

  • Meet with the employer and, at times, employees or employee representatives
  • Walk through the worksite with the employer and employees
  • Review company injury and illness rates
  • Help identify hazards in the workplace
  • Identify types of assistance available
  • Give detailed findings in a closing conference
  • Provide a written report summarizing findings
  • Help with developing or maintaining an effective safety and health program
  • Provide training and education for the employer and employees
  • Recommend the site for a 1-year exemption from OSHA programmed inspections, when Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP) criteria are met

In rare instances, the consultant may find an “imminent danger” situation during the walk-through. If so, the employer must take immediate action to protect all employees.

Find out more about the consultation at this OHSA webpage.