Preventing Workplace Injuries with Pre-Employment Testing

The Bureau of Labor Statistics of the US Department of Labor reports that almost 3 million non-fatal injuries (94.8%) or illnesses (5.2%) occurred in 2012, equivalent to more than 3 out of 100 full-time workers across industries in the private sector. A majority of these injuries were in the service industries. While this actually indicates a general decline from previous years, this still represents a cost of billions in days of lost work, increased premiums, work transfers, and restrictions.

Employers have a right to ensure that the individuals they are hiring are physically and psychologically able to do the work. This makes practical sense because an employee that is always sick or gets injured costs the employer money in terms of lost productivity, employee turnover, increased workers’ comp premiums, and possible litigation. This is especially true for service industry employers, where the majority of workplace injuries take place.

Aside from protecting the employer’s profit margin, preventing workplace injuries makes sense for the employee, because even though a workplace injury entitles them to claim for workers’ compensation insurance, it is never as much as they would have gotten from working a normal day. Plus, it is not good to get injured or get sick on any day, especially if it results in disability.

Fit-to-work assessments are conducted using scientific methods for measuring an individual’s capacity to do certain tasks. According to the website of WorkSTEPS, Inc., functional pre-employment testing reduces the incidence of workplace injuries by as much as 50%.  For example, a person with a back problem will aggravate the problem as well as risk permanent health damage if hired for a job that involves heavy or frequent lifting. Pre-employment testing helps in promoting a safe work environment from the employee side as well as a way to increase productivity.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *