The temporary staffing industry faces special challenges when it comes to managing their employees’ risk of injury. Even though a staffing firm is responsible for insuring its employees, it typically can’t control the conditions of their workplaces or the safety practices of clients. At the same time, preventing injury is an important component of controlling the total cost of Workers’ Compensation. By adopting a robust risk-management program, staffing firms can significantly improve their accident record and lower their Workers’ Compensation costs.
Every staffing business has unique risk management challenges. A firm’s profile will depend on factors like its current clientele, plans for expansion, and the skill level of its employees. The extent to which clients allow for direct supervision of workers at client locations will also play a significant role. For many firms, managing off-site risks begins by adopting a program that works toward these goals:
· Adopt a formal off-site safety protocol. Consistency is a cardinal component of a successful safety program. That begins with a plan to guide employees, managers, and relationships with clients. In addition to providing specific guidelines for staff to follow, a written policy sets the tone of a company’s safety program.
· Keep the protocol updated. A static safety policy will almost certainly fail to account for new or changing conditions. Continuous re-evaluation and improvement should be a central part of a safety protocol.
· Hire or train safety specialists. Safety is a constant concern. Firms should develop in-house capabilities to evaluate safety risks at client sites. Risks can’t be mitigated if they aren’t known. A professional trained in health and safety rules can identify potential hazards and help the firm incorporate them into its training and plans.
· Address safety with clients. An in-house safety specialist likely will spend a good deal of time coordinating safety issues with clients. A close examination of a client’s safety practices is key to identifying and addressing gaps. If there are conflicts between the staffing firm’s policies and the client’s, resolving them before work begins is important. In most cases, the client’s location may need to be inspected in person.
· Conduct routine training. Temporary staffing firms can’t rely on their clients to provide appropriate safety training. Employees need to be empowered to independently recognize and address the hazards they encounter. They also need to know what to do in the event of an emergency.
A risk management firm with experience working with temporary staffing firms can help your business develop an effective and cost-reducing program. At Gunnin Insurance we have developed a comprehensive approach to evaluating and improving the safety practices of our clients in the staffing industry. Contact us today to learn how we can make a difference for your business.