A Publication of WTVP

We are all too aware of the economic circumstances. Some of us are walking in our doors every morning knowing we have to cut costs—and possibly have to lay someone off or be laid off ourselves. All of this uncertainty leads to increased stress in the work environments for many workers.

This brings us back to making sure we are watching costs, especially in the area of safety and workers’ compensation. If ever there was a time to focus in this area, the time is now. Good people—those who we would never think would do anything questionable—will often switch to survival mode when their livelihood is threatened. Don’t think this is true?

This February, The New York Times ran an article about the effects of recessions on the workplace, giving this example. “On June 1, 1991, a jeans manufacturer named Big Yank shut an Oklahoma factory employing 225 workers. As the plant closed, the employees filed nearly 400 workers’ compensation claims for injuries on the job, despite having filed only six in the previous year.” I’m sure that not all of these people were “of questionable character” in normal times, and many probably had legitimate claims.

As an employer, what can you do? In short, focus, focus, focus. Regardless of the stress, it is too costly to not be vigilant managing workers’ compensation costs. Here are some tips to help you stay attentive.