Many think reducing insurance costs and spending is the best way to respond to rising workers' compensation costs, but actually, having a sound safety program designed to continuously improve is the key to controlling workers' compensation costs.
Here are 5 steps to build a solid safety program:
1. Develop safety programs required by the OSHA standards.
OSHA construction standards require that written programs be developed and then communicated to workers. Experience shows that companies with thoroughly developed, OSHA-compliant programs have fewer accidents, more productive employees and lower workers’ compensation costs.
2. Integrate those programs into daily operations.
Policies alone won’t get results; your safety program must move from paper to practice to impact your bottom line. Achieving this requires a strategic plan clearly communicated to workers, good execution, and a culture that both inspires and rewards people to do their best. A solid OSHA program, integrated into your worksite’s daily operation and led by competent site supervisors, is just the beginning. Successful safety programs are also proactive instead of reactive.
3. Investigate all injuries and illnesses.
Reducing serious accidents means you must reduce your overall rate of all accidents—including first aid-only incidents. That only happens when every incident is fully investigated, and corrective actions are identified and integrated into daily job tasks.
4. Provide training to develop safety competence in all employees.
5. Audit your programs and your worksite on a regular basis to stimulate continuous improvement.
The final steps focus on training and auditing your program for continuous improvement. Training plays a significant role in safety and in reducing workers’ compensation costs. The goal of training is to develop competent people who have the knowledge, skill and understanding to perform assigned job responsibilities. Competence, more than anything else, will drive down costs. Site supervisors must have the knowledge and ability to integrate programs into each job on the job site so that employees know what is expected of them.
Our team at Menicucci Insurance Agency is committed to helping you establish a strong safety program that minimizes your workers’ compensation exposures. Call us today at (505) 883-3683 to learn more about our OSHA compliance and safety program resources.