Bullying and harassment

Discussion and disagreements form a regular part of workplace interactions. However, when it becomes confrontation it can result in the deterioration of working relationships.

The International Labour Organization defines workplace violence as:

Any action, incident or behaviour that departs from reasonable conduct in which a person is assaulted, threatened, harmed, injured in the course of, or as a direct result of, his or her work.

Workplace violence, bullying or harassment pose a challenge that has received significant attention over the last decade, in scientific, economic and policy terms. It costs employers in terms of absenteeism, lower productivity and staff turnover. It costs workers in terms of the physical and emotional toll, and not only in high-risk occupations such as the police and emergency services, health and social care.

An occupational health and safety professional can contribute the trusted tools of hazard identification, assessment, control, monitoring and review to the management of the risks of violence, bullying and harassment.

IOSH activities

IOSH has published research including Unacceptable behaviour, health and wellbeing at work and research from Ireland based on the Workplace Behaviour Survey.

Wider Guidance

If you're looking for general guidance on the topics of workplace violence, aggression, bullying and harassment, visit: