If your business hires workers for physically demanding jobs – and if your business is manufacturing, warehousing or transportation, you probably do – reducing the risk and expense of workplace injuries is a priority you can’t afford to ignore. And while accidents are sure to happen, 63 percent of the top ten workplace injuries identified by Liberty Mutual Research Institute are exactly the kinds of mishaps that pre-hire Physical Abilities Testing (PAT) is designed to help prevent.
The results can be dramatic. In a study published in Work, researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) conducted 712 pre-hire Physical Abilities Tests over a three year period on workers to be hired in the institution’s physical plant. The study analyzed changes in workers’ compensation costs for the three years prior to implementing the pre-hire PAT program and three years after the program was implemented. The results were a risk manager’s wish list fulfilled:
- $1,353,636 total workers’ compensation cost reduction
- 90 percent decrease in injuries
- 81 percent decrease in cost per workers’ compensation case
- 98 percent decrease in total costs
When the UIC researchers crunched these numbers, they found that for every $1 spent on the program, the company actually saved $18. This is proof that putting a strong effort towards prevention can result in a strong return on investment.
While every workplace is different and your mileage may vary, there’s little doubt that money spent to reduce the incidence of workplace injury is a “risk” worth taking.