Are Your HR Practices Helping or Hurting Your Workers Compensation Premiums?
Time and time again, I see employers hurting themselves with their human resource policies. Poor policies (or lack of policies) can directly affect their workers compensation claims, which in turn, causes premiums to rise.
It’s very important to establish human resource policies that will help eliminate or reduce claims thereby keeping your premiums low year after year. This is particularly important now as workers compensation rates are rising.
Here are some examples to get you started:
In California, your Medical Provider Network (MPN) should be in place and documented. If this is not the case, then you (and the insurance company) lose control over medical treatment which will result is higher costs. All employees must sign a form acknowledging the MPN is in place and injury and illness treatment will take place within the MPN doctor’s network.
Hiring practices are another example of how to screen out potential problems before they happen. Does your application process allow you to screen for drugs and perform a pre-placement physical after a conditional offer of employment? These medical exams can include:
- questions about medical conditions
- job specific physical/agility testing
- drug and alcohol screens
- back motion testing
as well as many other areas, depending on your needs. Partner with a medical clinic that has your best interests in mind, not theirs. Do not pick a medical clinic based on geographical considerations! Choose the clinic in your MPN based on their ability to provide you with best service. If you are using an outstanding clinic and they are not in your network, talk your insurance agent. They should be able to get the clinic approved.
These are just a few areas to look at as a part of a comprehensive review of your current practices. There are many other aspects of your Human Resources policies that can help you keep your workers compensation costs low.
When you develop your Human Resource Program, consult with your Labor Attorney or Human Resource consultant for valuable advice for the most effective ways to execute your Human Resource policies while staying in compliance with State and Federal Labor codes.
Your insurance agent should be able to refer you to a professional and work in collaboration with them so you benefit from a coordinated effort from your team.