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Supervisors Drive Your Workers' Comp Costs

By August 1, 2013August 22nd, 2018

Controlling workers’ compensation costs is a top priority for employers. One way to accomplish that is to provide your supervisors with the knowledge and skills they need to help keep the program on the right track. Here are some areas where a supervisor can have a positive influence on your insurance premium:

1. Timely Claim Reporting

Time is money and that’s especially true when it comes to workers’ compensation claims. A study by The Hartford shows that claims filed a month or more after an injury cost an average of 48% more than those filed in the first week. Any delay in reporting is called “lag time” and is measured as the time from the date your employee was injured to one or all of these dates: (1) the date you were notified, (2) the date the injury report was completed, (3) the date the insurance agent or carrier was notified. These extra days postpone important medical treatment which can lengthen recovery time. To contain the impact claims will have on your premium, supervisors should report all incidents within 24 hours.

2. Accident Investigation

The best way to prevent workplace accidents is to stop them before they happen. Utilizing a strong accident investigation process will allow you to uncover the root cause of injuries and help you control workers’ compensation costs. Accident investigation should take place immediately after an accident. This practice can help you eliminate exposures and create targeted programs for a safer workplace.

Generally, there are three causes to every accident: the immediate cause, contributing or surface cause, and root cause. The role of a supervisor is to identify the root cause and suggest a remedy to the hazard.

For example, if an employee breaks their arm after slipping on a wet floor, the immediate cause of the injury is that the employee slipped in a puddle of water, the surface cause is that the floor was wet because the water had not been cleaned up, but the root cause of the puddle and subsequent injury is a leaking pipe. After identifying the root cause, you will be able to repair the pipe as well as train employees on good housekeeping. This should insure that in the future employees will not slip in errant puddles and be injured.

3. Nurturing Employee Relationships

One of the most important keys to a successful workers’ compensation program is a positive relationship between an injured worker and their supervisor. Studies show a direct correlation between employee satisfaction in the workplace and the number and duration of injuries. Providing injured workers with information about the workers’ compensation process will alleviate their fears about losing their job, how they will be paid, and what medical treatment is available to them. Without employer support, the rate of litigation increases by 47%. Once they have been cleared to come back in a defined capacity, providing them with a transitional duty opportunity increases their self-esteem and allows them to resume normal activities which also aids in recovery.

If controlling your workers’ compensation cost is a priority, we can help. Give us a call at 800-462-6435.