As an employer, your bottom line comes down to keeping staffing costs low and productivity high. This is partly achieved through providing a safe environment in which employees can do their best work. Unfortunately, workplace accidents can and do happen – costing your company a hefty sum in workers’ compensation claims and lost work hours.
While you cannot 100 percent prevent all accidents from happening, there are ways to develop a policy on safety that can help your organization to avoid being involved in frequent and expensive workers’ compensation claims.
- Provide Safety Training Sessions – from the very first day of employment, make it a priority to give employees the information and training they need to avoid accidents or injuries at work. Teach employees the proper way of lifting and carrying objects, the safe operation of all company equipment and vehicles, what to do in a crisis situation, and how to limit exposure to harmful work elements such as chemicals, fumes, and heat. Hold a monthly safety meeting and send out frequent reminders on safety topics, inviting employees to see more information as needed to prevent workers’ comp cases.
- Hazard Communication Procedure – This is an area that many companies forget to emphasize, however it can be beneficial in preventing accidents and injuries in the workplace. Establish a procedure for reporting possible hazards on the job, and make sure that all employees understand what to do if they spot a problem. Make sure your employees know where to find the latest information in the MSDS book in case of chemical exposure. Even office printer inks and cleaning chemicals should be included.
- Evaluate Workplace Ergonomics – Since repetitive stress injuries, like Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and back strain, are growing as a source of workers’ compensation claims in many organizations, making changes to the work environment makes sense at times. Take the time to observe your workers in process, and note the strain they experience by standing on hard floors, using their hands to perform strenuous tasks, and the state of their chairs and desks. You may be able to cut down on the number of workers’ compensation cases merely by investing in more ergonomic equipment.
Remember, if an accident occurs on the job, the key is to make sure that the employee gets prompt medical attention to avoid a lengthy and costly workers’ compensation claim. Have an occupational medicine center nearby to refer employees to and be sure to document everything immediately to reduce the chances of an injury becoming worse than it has to be.
Another option for reducing workers’ compensation claims is to work directly with a staffing agency like Advance Staffing Solutions to manage a contract workforce for you.