To begin, it's important to recognize that a COR is a Large Employer Certificate of Recognition for organizations with 10+ personnel.
A SECOR is a Small Employers COR which is utilized for smaller companies who have 10 or less personnel.
The person who is completing the Audit on your company Health & Safety Program will register your audit as one of these two options.
The second reason that COR & SECOR audits are different is that a Large Employer COR is a more extensive audit including interviews, site visits.
For either type of audit, someone at your company may have the option to take internal auditor training (Depending on your certifying partner) which means that you can audit your own company under certain circumstances in addition to the external audit that is required for certification and re-certification.
In general, most COR's have a 3 year life-cycle or expiration. Lets say, for example that we had a COR Certificate with a June 2018 Expiration. This means:
- June 2015 - Initial Certification Audit (COR External Auditor)
- June 2016 - Maintenance 1 Audit
- June 2017 - Maintenance 2 Audit
- June 2018 - COR Expires. Renewal Audit (COR External Auditor)
- June 2019 - Maintenance 1 Audit
- June 2020 - Maintenance 2 Audit
Depending on your certifying partner, you may have slightly more flexible requirements during 'maintenance years' and more rigid requirements during Initial Certification or Re-Certification.
Audits should be submitted to the certifying partner on or before the anniversary date in order to maintain current COR/SECOR status. Failure to submit an audit every year will result in cancellation of the COR/SECOR. This means you'll be starting not with a renewal audit but an initial certification audit.
Why Do I need a COR?
Truthfully, you don't.... but achieving and maintaining a valid COR is required for earning a financial incentive through the WCB Partnerships in Injury Reduction program or other WCB programs.
It is also not unusual for some corporations to expect contractors bidding on projects to hold a valid COR. That is where we get stuck with the COR system. As more and more companies started to see it as a standard, we lost the ability for systems that can do better than what a COR offers to compete.