Workman compensation claims cost companies billions of dollars each year. For small businesses, in particular, managing workman comp issues can overwhelm your HR capabilities quickly. Fortunately, small businesses can use some of the same strategies employed by bigger businesses and some specific tactics suited specifically for smaller businesses to manage workman comp issues effectively.
Here are some small business tips for all phases of workman comp claims:
Building relationships is the key to any successful small business. Strong relationships with your customers, employees, community, vendors, and lenders are intrinsically built into any successful small business. One entity, however, that is often overlooked is your relationship with your small business's insurer. Here are ways you can improve your relationship:
Forms: making sure that you know and can access the forms necessary for filing workman comp claims is essential. If you don't know how to access them, your workers aren't likely to know either. When your employees aren't able to access workman comp claims, their injuries can go untreated and they may resort to costly legal measures to address their claims.
Training: most small business insurers hire local or regional representatives tasked with maintaining relationships with local clients. These representatives aren't just salespeople; they know how the workman comp process is designed to function through your insurer. Not only should you, the small business owner, receive training, but you should ensure that every employee receives training when they're hired on.
Proactive: your insurer can only help you deal with a workman comp claim when you're proactive. File claims promptly, follow up on claims, and make sure that the employee(s) filling the claim(s) are being taken care of.
Keep Accurate Records
A finalized workman comp claim can consist of hundreds of forms and documents. To complete these forms and documents, you need to keep accurate and organized records. Although most of this record keeping will inevitably be digital, some will also be simple pencil and paper forms that can easily be lost or misplaced. Here are ways to stay organized:
Delegate: most big businesses have HR departments specifically tasked with maintaining records needed for satisfying potential workman comp claims. Small businesses, however, often don't have the manpower or resources to devote to HR matters. Thus, small business must delegate HR tasks within the business. Whoever is tasked with maintaining these records should keep a file specifically tied to each employee. Additionally, this designated "HR" employee should scan as many simple pencil and paper forms into your computer system to make sure that these forms aren't misplaced or lost.
Timely: recording information in a timely fashion is another key to good record keeping. When an accident happens, this "HR" employee should seek eyewitness information, take photographs, and record other important facts relating to the claim. Communicating this information with the insurer will be paramount.
Return to Work Programs
Replacing employees is one of the most expensive aspects of owning a small business. This is particularly true if a worker leaves because a workman comp claim wasn't handled appropriately or they find it too difficult to re-enter the workforce.
Rehab: injuries sustained on the job often require rehabilitation programs. These rehabilitation programs, although expensive, can help your employees return from injury to enjoy a normal life and get back into the swing of the job. Making allowances for rehabilitation programs is critical to maintaining workers returning from workman comp claims.
Compassion: when workers feel valued as people, they are more likely to be better employees. As a small business owner, being understanding and avoiding an adversarial tone throughout a workman comp process can help you maintain the relationship you need with your employee to retain them when they get back on their feet.
For more information and help with your business's workman comp, talk with a lawyer, such as those at Shaw Leslie Law Office.Share
16 January 2017
Hello, my name is Matthew. Welcome to my site. I am here to talk to you about accident and personal injury attorneys. When I was involved in a serious accident, I had to recover for months in the hospital. My finances suffered due to mounting medical bills and lost wages. I dealt with considerable pain through every phase of the healing process. I worked with an accident and personal injury attorney to obtain compensation for the repercussions of the accident. I created this site to help others find an attorney to work with so they too could acquire compensation following an accident.