Innovative Ways to Trim Workers’ Comp Costs

 Looking for innovative ways to reduce workers’ compensation losses and improve productivity?  Some companies who have successfully managed to do so shared some of their methods at a recent conference.

One major hotel corporation put hotel managers and regional executives in competition with each other.  They set up a system which tracks and compares accidents and costs at each property.  Injury frequency targets are established and manager bonuses are tied to their safety performance.  Hotel managers also received safety training and tools to reduce those losses.

A hospital invested in equipment designed to reduce some of the physical strain and injuries to their nursing staff.  They also had an injured nurse talk to her peers about protecting themselves from injury.  In addition, they have improved return-to-work measures and introduced safety incentive prizes.  These steps help avoid nurses having to leave their jobs at an early age.

An equipment manufacturer used similar strategies, and stressed the importance of employee buy-in to the safety culture in order for it to succeed.  They treat workers’ comp as an employee benefit and explain it clearly.  Injured workers are given a DVD which explains their rights and responsibilities, as well as the responsibilities of doctors, claims administrators and others involved in their case.  It also includes testimonies of injured employees who have returned to work, stressing that “workers’ comp is the security on the road to recovery.”

From Business Insurance, May 10, 2010 issue, p. 24.