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Risk in Context

3 Ways to Reimagine Your Workplace and People Risk

Posted by Christopher Flatt April 10, 2017

Workers’ compensation typically represents the largest insurance expense for businesses, but insurance is just one way that employers can manage workplace injuries and their costs. Employers should reimagine their workplace and people risk by looking across all elements of their total cost of risk (TCOR).

More than Insurance

Insurance costs are always an important risk management consideration. And relative to other risks, the cost of workers’ compensation insurance has traditionally been significant.

But in a buyer-friendly market, employers generally have been able to reduce their workers’ compensation insurance expenses in recent years. Meanwhile, when looking at total cost of casualty risk — or the total cost of workers’ compensation risk — insurance is just one of five cost elements. The other four elements are:

  • Retained losses.
  • Claims administration.
  • Collateral.
  • Unexpected loss volatility.

That means employers have the opportunity to take actions — beyond the purchase of insurance coverage — to create safer workplaces and reduce the costs associated with workplace injuries.

Culture and Training

The responsibility for creating a safe work culture begins at the top. Leadership can set the tone by making it clear that maintaining a safe working environment is a priority for the organization — and the responsibility of all employees.

An important part of any organization’s safety culture is training. Preventing just a few injuries each year can recoup your investments in training and new claims and loss control measures. And it can yield significant benefits, including fewer employee absences, greater productivity, fewer regulatory fines and penalties, and lower workers’ compensation benefits costs.

Technology

Technology can help employers improve the efficiency and effectiveness of their workers’ compensation and workplace safety programs and contribute to better outcomes for injured workers. For example, employers can use technology to build easy-to-use systems through which employees can report incidents and injuries. Wearable devices can also help keep employees safe and healthy. And through telemedicine, an employee can speak or interact with a doctor or nurse shortly after an injury has occurred, which could spell the difference between good and bad claim outcomes.

Claims Management

Even the best prepared organizations will face workers’ compensation claims from time to time; how you manage those claims can greatly impact your bottom line.

In addition to injury prevention measures, employers can take several steps following an injury to reduce its severity:

  • Pharmacy benefit programs reduce treatment costs for injured employees.
  • Return-to-work programs reduce claims durations, while improving employee productivity and morale.
  • The claims advocacy model focuses on transparency and communication to reduce costs for employers and accelerate recovery for employees.

For more information on how Marsh is #ReimaginingRisk at #RIMS2017 and our plans for the conference — including educational sessions, panel discussions, roundtables, and more — visit www.MarshatRIMS.com.

Related to:  Workers' Compensation

Christopher Flatt

Christopher’s current responsibilities include the management of Marsh’s dedicated Workers’ Compensation Center of Excellence, which is part of the US Casualty Practice.