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Health, Safety and Environment / System description for HSE / HSE Guide

Responsibilities and tasks in the line

Systematic HSE work is a line responsibility. Responsibilities and tasks in each unit must be described and documented locally



The Rector is responsible for ensuring that current regulations within HSE are followed. He /she has an overarching employer responsibility for the college’s staff and must follow up the HSE work at HiOA. The Rector must ensure that HSE is part of the college’s overarching planning documents with objective agreement and result indicators and follow up the annual reporting of HSE conditions at HiOA.

The rector must ensure regular exchange of information with the college's chief safety delegate.

The rector has a line manager responsibility for deans, heads of centre, vice-rectors, the  director of digitalisation and infrastructure, the director of organisation and corporate governance and employees in the rector’s staff units.

Line managers

Line managers are immediate managers with HR responsibility.

Line managers are responsible for ensuring that the provisions of the Working Environment Act and other legislation within HSE are being followed. The responsibility cannot be delegated to others.

Defined tasks associated with different parts of the HSE work can be delegated to the employees at the unit. Any delegation of tasks must be documented in writing. Whoever has been delegated tasks will perform these on behalf of the manager. Unless otherwise documented, it is the manager himself who should perform the HSE tasks. HSE tasks should not be delegated to the safety delegates as these have a supervisory and control function.

The line manager must maintain regular dialogue with the unit's safety delegates.

The line manager must ensure that HSE is incorporated in the unit's planning documents and follow up the requirements for reporting on the HSE conditions.

The line manager must

  • plan for a fully satisfactory working environment
  • ensure the documentation of delegated tasks
  • ensure that the organisation’s activities are performed according to regulations (ref. Internal Control Regulations, section 5)

The line manager's responsibilities apply in the same manner to students as to employees when students perform work in laboratories and workshops.

The line manager’s responsibilities and tasks can be specified in separate guidelines.

The line manager is the employer's representative and is obliged to undergo training in health, safety and environment (Working Environment Act, section 3-5).

Work manager

“Employees charged with directing or supervising other employees shall ensure that safety and health are taken into consideration when work that comes under their areas of responsibility is being planned and carried out.” [WEA, section 2-3 (3)]

Employees charged with supervising students in laboratories and workshops fall under this provision and must have the “…necessary competence to ensure that the work is performed in a proper manner with regard to health and safety,…”

The work manager must possess documented HSE knowledge and

  • plan for a fully satisfactory working environment
  • ensure that the organisation’s activities are performed according to regulations (ref. Internal Control Regulations, section 5)
  • The tasks can be specified in separate guidelines.


Anyone performing work in the service of HiOA are considered employees (WEA, section 1-8). Student assistants, trainees, PhD research fellows and part time teachers with employment agreements are considered as employees. If there is doubt concerning HiOA’s role as an employer for an employee, this problem must be solved individually for each single case. Any employer responsibilities must be agreed upon in writing.

The provisions of the Working Environment Act concerning the employee's duty to cooperate (WEA section 2-3) apply to all employees at HiOA.


Students are required to comply with the objectives and plans for the HSE work at HiOA that concern them.

Work performed as practical training of students with educational or research purposes must be subject to the provisions of the Working Environment Act when this work is carried out under conditions that may involve danger to life and health. This applies to work carried out in the college’s laboratories and workshops. In this case, the students' rights and duties in the systematic HSE work coincide with those of the employees (ref. FOR-2005-12-16-1568). For all other learning areas, the provisions of the Universities and University Colleges Act (section 4-3) apply.

At HiOA, it is the Department of Academic Affairs, educational Quality and Internationalisation that safeguard the student's overall learning environment and rights. The learning environment committee is charged with the supervision of the learning environment.