A brief explanation of what the term self-monitoring means

The term self-monitoring means that you, as a business, must monitor your own compliance with applicable laws and regulations. The requirement on self-monitoring covers all business activities that could have an impact on people’s health and the environment.

Self-monitoring is a system for improvement and development and is viewed as positive for all industries and all companies, regardless of whether or not it is required by law. There are no general requirements regarding the documentation of self-monitoring activities, although it can still be a good idea to at least record simple notes about the measures you implement. For businesses that are subject to permit obligations, there are specified requirements regarding what must be included in self-monitoring measures.

Self-monitoring is based on:

  • Planning your business activities with focus on aspects such as environmental impact or hygiene (for example)
  • Performing checks and inspections (i.e. control measures) of your business activities – and having good procedures for this work
  • Monitoring the results of the control measures – did they contribute in the manner intended?
  • Improving your control – by rectifying and changing your procedures for control measures, so that they become better and more effective

Self-monitoring is part of the daily work

By implementing self-monitoring at your company, you organise the work and create procedures that ensure compliance with the laws and regulations applicable to your business. You plan and organise your work in a manner that counteracts and prevents any environmental risks. If self-monitoring is a statutory requirement for your business, it also becomes a good way to show the supervisory authority that your activities are in compliance with applicable legislation.

Self-monitoring should be based on risk assessment, e.g. with regard to environmental impact

Almost all companies have an impact on the environment in some way, but the important question is how, and to what extent? Think about the risks that your business activities could entail for air, soil and water pollution, and the impact they could have on the surrounding area. In your risk assessment you should take into account the likelihood that an activity will have an impact on the environment, and the potential consequences of such impact. Then, based on the results of the risk assessment, you need to prioritise the risks that you most want to prevent, and monitor those risks with the help of your control measures.

For most companies, the key is to ensure that they can structure their self-monitoring activities in a manner that is most appropriate for their specific business activities. 

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