As with many things in life, prevention is the best cure when it comes to controlling workers’ compensation costs. In the workplace, preventing accidents reduces workers’ compensation claims. Over time, that lowers the costs of workers’ compensation insurance coverage and overall workers’ compensation costs.
The best way, by far to prevent claims is to adopt a strong atmosphere of safety within the workplace that includes an even stronger safety program. These steps will help your business create the atmosphere of safety you need in order to bring workers’ compensation costs down for good.
Investigate Past and Present Injuries and Claims
Look for patterns, common areas where accidents seem to happen, and even the timing of accidents. When you know where areas of weakness within your organization are, you can take steps to prevent them. For instance, if there seem to be a large number of slips in one area, it may be time to install slip resistant flooring or require workers to wear safety shoes designed to avoid slips.
The key is to look for all areas of weakness so you can identify actionable steps to take in order to prevent further accidents in the future.
Purchase Necessary Safety Equipment
Whether you need to purchase safety shoes, new floors, guardrails, anchors, harnesses, or some combination of all these things, you must provide the equipment necessary to keep your workers safe if you have a genuine interest in bringing your workers’ compensation costs down.
Create Written Policies
You must put your safety program it in writing if you want it to matter to the people who work for you. Putting it in writing lets employees know you’re taking safety seriously, and helps to make safety part of your company’s culture.
You must also include consequences for employees who fail to observe adequate safety measures and potential rewards for those who do. For instance, departments that go accident free for a certain number of days (say 100) will receive an additional half day off with pay. If the number goes to 200 accident-free days, raise the reward to a full day.
Educate Your Staff about Safety
One of the most important things you can do to encourage safety is to educate employees about it. For best results, these education sessions need to be performed upon employment, quarterly, and with annual reviews in order to ensure the message is one that resonates with all employees and that no employee begins working before being properly trained on your safety protocols.
Finally, set the example for safety you want your employees to follow. They want to emulate owners and managers. If you follow your safety rules, they’re more likely to do so as well. Workers’ compensation insurance is a must for businesses today, but you can help control the costs with a strong safety program in your workplace.