As the pandemic surges forward, businesses are struggling to stay open and make a profit. Numerous issues plague business owners who are doing everything in their power to run a successful enterprise while keeping employees cared for and paid. No matter how many safety precautions a company employs, accidents are bound to happen, and employees will need proper assistance.
Although businesses have taken required and necessary precautions to ensure workplace safety, all it takes is one slip-up to bring a company to a complete standstill. After an employee is injured, they will need time to rest and recover, which means productivity may decrease. In worst-case scenarios, you may need to hire an interim employee to help with day-to-day productivity or pay non-injured employees overtime to cover extra shifts.
Although insurance companies will cover worker compensation, saving you valuable money, they don’t cover everything. Once you’ve experienced an accident in the workplace, your standard premium has the potential to skyrocket. As a business owner, you’ll need a solid plan in place to account for workplace injuries, accidents, and any resulting financial stressors.
When your employee may pursue legal action
There are many reasons an employee may elect to pursue legal action against your company following an injury. To avoid legal pursuits, avoid denying claims when possible, provide adequate medical bill coverage, and brush up on disability acts to firmly understand your rights and employee concerns. In many cases, victimized employees will recruit experienced employment law attorneys to fight for compensation. Practice vigilant safety precautions and have a clear plan in place to protect against lawsuits.
Ways to save money on workers’ compensation
If an accident does occur, brush up on the numerous ways you can save on workers’ compensation and plan accordingly.
Follow OSHA standards
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) sets stringent industry standards for all businesses to avoid fines and keep employees and customers safe. To prevent legal action, business owners should regularly check their operations and buildings to ensure everything is up to date on current industry safety standards. Look for glaring inconsistencies and broken guidelines and take care of concerns swiftly and safely.
Train employees regularly
Although federal law requires worker safety training, a once-per-year refresher may not be enough to keep employees safe and out of harm. Even though your employees may view it as a nuisance and decrease productivity for a few hours, consistent training produces safer environments and reduces potential liabilities.
Implement a return-to-work program
Accidents still happen in the safest work environments. Implementing a return-to-work program can help you contain costs. The longer a workers’ comp claim stays open, the more you’ll suffer financially. Your goal should be to keep claim times short and offer accommodations to the injured staff so they can return quickly and safely. Allow schedule modifications, offer half-time shifts, and tweak onerous duties to encourage a swift recovery while saving money.
Support a substance-free workplace
Employees who engage in drugs or alcohol use on the job are more likely to injure themselves and others around them. Inebriated employees also cost you nearly twice as much in workers comp and medical claims. Consider randomly testing employees for substances and encourage a drug-free environment on-and-off the clock.
Clarify job description
A common cause of employee injuries is untrained labor. Workers often participate in tasks outside of their skill-level or know-how, leading to dangerous accidents. Evade unsafe environments by clearly and accurately outlining job descriptions for each employee. In the guidelines, you should specifically mention which tasks and equipment are off-limits for untrained staff.
A well-oiled organization consists of various rules, regulations, and operations to keep employers and staff safe. Avoid expensive, devastating lawsuits by putting precautions in place and offering support and care to injured employees.