Helen Waddington

pro Member - South Glos

HKW Risk Management Ltd

Hello, I am Helen Waddington and I am a management systems consultant based in Bristol. I specialise in offering bespoke solutions to businesses needing to newly implement or improve and integrate existing quality, health, safety and environmental management systems.

A bit about me...

I love meeting new people and businesses.

I love talking to people and finding out the details of their job and how that fits into what the business does and where it is going.

I love helping businesses rationalise and improve how they do what they do.

I love getting rid of unnecessary paperwork and bureaucracy to make processes more efficient and people happier.


I do all of this by using my quality, health, safety and environmental knowledge to help businesses identify risks and control them to an acceptable level. I use the ISO management system requirements as a framework to implement, improve or integrate business practices and processes. A full-scale implementation project would involve:

- Completion of a thorough gap analysis of existing business practices, processes and documentation against the requirements of the relevant standard

- Production of an action plan

- Completion of actions and implementation of improvement

- Ongoing communication with staff throughout the project, from shop floor to director level

- Internal auditing

- Support and assistance in choosing and liaising with certification bodies if required

I work with the following standards:

- ISO 9001:2015 (quality)
- ISO 14001:2015 (environmental)
- OHSAS 18001:2007 or ISO 45001:2018 (health and safety

I have successfully completed projects as diverse as:

- Identifying the environmental impacts of 24/7 puff pastry manufacture

- Integrating the health, safety, quality and environmental management systems at a radiator valves and heating controls manufacturer

- Updating and significantly improving the quality management system of a specialist polymer manufacturer – I reduced the number of documents from 500 to 50

- Updating and streamlining the environmental management system of a legal firm

- Updating the quality management system at an aircraft refuelling vehicles manufacturer

- Reviewing and improving the health and safety management system at a metal fabrication workshop – I now provide ongoing support as a competent person

- Updating and integrating the separate quality and environmental management systems at a leading distributor of innovative medical supplies

A bit more about me

What's the most enjoyable thing about your work?
Meeting new people and finding out about the quite extraordinary range of businesses out there - both of which satisfy my endless curiosity!

What is your vision for your business?
Growth - I would like to build and scale up the business so I have associates or employees to carry out project work on my behalf and I can focus on winning more work and managing clients. Flexibility - I would like to have flexibility around my family and eventually I would like to become a truly flexible employer.

If you could give one single piece of advice to a new start up business, what would it be?
Look after yourself as well - it is so easy to get totally obsessed with your new venture and all the excitement and adrenaline that it brings but if you forget the basics of eating, sleeping, exercising and doing whatever activity maintains your sanity, it can all get a bit out of control.

Which business person or company do you admire most and why?
Kresse Wesling of Elvis and Kresse. Kresse set up a business to recycle waste (London's fire hoses) and to turn the material into something useful and beautiful (luxury bags). I absolutely love the story of her business and her emphasis on reusing waste materials for an entirely different market. I first came across Elvis and Kresse in an article in Quality World where they discussed their approach to quality management and ISO 9001 which I found really interesting.

Which one phrase or quote sums up your attitude to business life?
"So be sure when you step. Step with care and great tact and remember that Life's a Great Balancing Act.From Oh, the places you'll go by Dr Seuss

What made you join WMB and how do you plan to make the most of the network?
Clare Davis from Nova Associates introduced me to the network some time ago and after a few visits I have now become a member. I'm planning on attending my own group every month and hoping to bring visitors along regularly. I'm also planning to visit other groups across the WMB and the We Mean Biz networks.

What do you do at week-ends?
I try to stay out of the office - with mixed success! I like to spend time with my family outdoors - visiting a National Trust place or going cycling (on and off road). I like to bake cakes and biscuits and cook roasts for friends. I've also started to scrapbook again in a (probably) vain attempt to 'catch up' on the last 5 years of photographs. I've also recently started doing sprint triathlons which I love (but I need a new bike)

If you were stranded on a desert island, what 2 luxury items would you take?
Does my husband count as one? He is incredibly practical and would be very useful. If there is no limit on size of item, a gin distillery would be quite handy...

What was your first ever job?
Packing children's colouring books into plastic bags in a warehouse - made me understand something about logistics and the world of work, also made me realise I didn't want to work in a warehouse!