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NEBOSH IIRSM risk qualification

Disruption, uncertainty and the ‘unthinkable’ are today’s realities. The ability to mitigate threats and take calculated risks are essential for success.

Think pandemics, climate change, cyber threats, complex regulatory environments, data breaches, geopolitics, and the levels of anxiety in the workforce. The pressure to manage these challenges, whilst delivering shareholder, financial, regulatory, customer and ethical expectations have never been so great.  We are unable to control every outcome, but what we can do is harness and nurture our greatest asset, our people, a melting pot of talent to innovate and find solutions.

Old fashioned concepts of risk management focus solely on failure. Modern concepts are about understanding what might happen, not just what could go wrong, but more importantly, what could go right. Making the right decisions requires the right people to make them and at the right time.

Effective decision-making requires a good knowledge of the challenge faced, why a decision is needed and the objective(s) to be achieved.  Moreover, it needs reliable and timely information, plus insight from different perspectives, whilst factoring in any possibility of cognitive bias.

This qualification will help you build your risk management knowledge and skills, which are highly transferrable, and can help you on your chosen career path.  

Please note the information on this page is correct at time of publication but may change after we have piloted the qualification and made changes following feedback prior to launch.

Key details
Qualification overview

The NEBOSH IIRSM Certificate in Managing Risk can help you be better equipped to identify, evaluate, manage, and communicate on risk.

Immersing yourself in our course materials and rich learning experience, full of real-world case studies and scenarios will provide not only a practical and enjoyable experience, but will help you gain new skills and tools that can be immediately applied.

Studying this qualification will help you:  

  • Analyse the environment in which your organisation operates, identifying potential risks and opportunities and their impact on your objectives
  • Master the essential principles of risk management and their link to decision-making
  • Start having the right and timely conversations about risk with different stakeholders
  • Appreciate the relationship between psychology and decision-making
  • Understand the risk management process and framework based on ISO 31000
  • Appreciate the positive role risk management plays in strategy development, business planning and achievement of objectives
  • Understand the vital role of people and culture to act on risk
  • Appreciate the importance of an integrated approach to risk management


Qualification structure

The qualification is made up of three elements and based on the principles of the Global Risk Management Standard, ISO 31000.

Element 1 - Principles of risk and risk management

  • The principles of risk and risk management
  • The impact of psychology on decision-making

Element 2 - The risk management process

  • Overview of the risk management process
  • Scope, context and risk appetite
  • Risk assessment
  • Risk treatment
  • The role and importance of risk reporting and information
  • Communication and consultation in the risk management process
  • Monitoring and review of the risk management process

Element 3 - The risk management framework

  • Integrating the risk management framework within an organisation
  • The risk management framework and its relationship with culture
  • The relationship between risk management, business continuity, crisis management and organisational resilience
Learning outcomes

By the end of the qualification, you will be able to:

  • Understand the principles of risk and risk management
  • Source and challenge the validity of risk information
  • Understand the impact of psychology on decision making
  • Apply the risk management process to manage risk effectively
  • Understand how to integrate a risk management framework into your organisation
Delivery method, study hours and assessment

We understand that people learn differently and have different levels of time, commitment, and budgets to give to their professional development. Therefore, the qualification will be available through face to face training and eLearning. Both methods will require learners to undertake pre-course work and self-study. 

It is anticipated you should plan your study around a minimum of 28 hours of taught learning with additional time for private study. 

The qualification will be formally assessed via knowledge and scenario-based judgement multiple choice questions.


Post-pilot, the qualification will be credited and levelled against the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF).

The SCQF is a way of comparing qualifications. The level of qualification shows how difficult the learning is and the credit points show how much learning is involved. 

The SCQF also maps to other qualification frameworks, including those found elsewhere in the UK, Europe and beyond.

We are aiming for The Certificate in Managing Risk to be at Level 6 on the SCQF.

Find out more here


This qualification is globally applicable, relevant for any job role and provides learners the ability to gain truly transferrable skills that can be applied in any organisation, industry, and geographical location. It aims to help new and aspiring managers become more capable and confident to identify, assess, manage. and communicate on risk.

It is particularly relevant for:

  • professionals who need a better appreciation of the wider aspects of business risks and their impacts, beyond their specialist risk area. The qualification will be of benefit to those working in Business Continuity, Compliance, Crisis Management, Emergency Planning, Enterprise Risk Management, Environmental Management, Governance, Health & Safety, Internal Audit, Project Management and Quality Management 
  • anyone who is responsible for the implementation of management systems standards, providing a practical risk-based approach 
  • any manager or decision-maker responsible for leading projects, departments and daily operational activities who will benefit from a better appreciation of how to manage and communicate on risks and their impacts 
  • anyone who wants to improve their risk management skills to help them do their job better 
Qualification Pilot

Covid-19 led to a delay in piloting the qualification, but we hope to pilot it via eLearning early this summer. Dates and more details to be confirmed shortly.

We will be inviting up to 100 candidates to be involved, and part of the process will be to provide constructive feedback that will be considered prior to launching the qualification later in the year.  

If you would like to be considered to take part, please register your interest at


IIRSM and NEBOSH are delighted to be working in partnership, combining expertise and resources to develop a practical and accessible risk qualification.

The qualification is underpinned by a set of professional standards which sets out the knowledge and skills expected of an individual who is competent to manage risks, in all their forms, no matter their role, type of organisation, industry or geographical location.

The following highlights some of the features that were considered in the development of the qualification.

  • The underpinning professional standards and qualification syllabus was widely consulted on and ratified by a panel of leading experts from a variety of risk roles and backgrounds.
  • Increasingly, businesses are recognising the need for all decision-makers to be competent and confident to manage risk and to understand the knock-on consequences of their decisions beyond their area of work.
  • The learner will attain transferrable knowledge and skills that can be applied to any industry and size of organisation. The principles of risk and risk management can be equally applied to an SME to a large multinational, and from construction and manufacturing to retail and entertainment industries.
  • No focus on any specific legislation or regulation. Provides tools to help comply, whilst looking at the ‘bigger’ picture and the needs of the business beyond compliance. It is a risk for compliance to be considered in isolation.
  • Learners will gain practical tools to take away and feel comfortable in applying them immediately back in the workplace.
  • The course materials and learning experience includes lots of practical examples and uses real-world case studies to aide learning.