Back-on-the-job programs bring big returns to employers


Case Study #1 Insured School for “Exceptional Children” (autism, down syndrome, etc.); 300 employees; safety committee 19 staff members.

Situation 1.88 experience mod, 300% loss ratio and dropped by the carrier.

Assessment Claims related to interaction with the children when they have an episode. Most were soft tissue injuries. There was no return to work program and the safety committee did not have a list of light duty jobs.

Solution Using Job Bank Worksheet, each department developed a list of jobs or support functions that could be done if there were an extra person in the department. The jobs could take one hour or a few days. The lists are maintained in the HR/Finance Department. When an employee is on light duty they report to that department to get their assignment.

Result Mod projection for the coming year: 1.45; insured received $32,000 back on audit and distributed as a $150-holiday bonus to all employees.

Case Study #2 Insured Trucking Company.

Situation High rate and a large number of claims – $800,000 premium.

Assessment No return to work program.

Solution After reviewing the back-on- the-job options, the trucking company decided to stop outsourcing its security guard function and make it a “light duty” job. Injured workers sit in the booth and collect paper work from incoming trucks. Another light duty job involves scanning the bar codes of boxes as they pass on a conveyor belt. By putting a chair on wheels, the employee simply sits and presses a button as the box goes by.

Result Self insuring the light duty on one case alone, the $4000 in indemnity saved $20,000 in a total premium over a 3-year period.

Economic Benefits of a Back-on-the-Job Program

  • Reduced workers’ compensation costs
  • Lower loss ratios and experience modifiers help control premiums
  • Lower medical costs and faster recovery time
  • No wage and training costs for substitute employees
  • Less overtime to make up for lost production
  • Elimination of work delays when experienced worker returns
  • Reduced stress on co-workers who were expected to perform additional duties
  • Improved employee/management relationships
  • Litigation is often avoided
  • Discourages fraudulent claims
  • Identifies cross-training opportunities

How Employees Benefit from a Back-on-the- Job Program

  • Maintains the employment relationship, which provides job security and financial independence
  • Minimizes the loss of physical fitness and muscle tone due to inactivity
  • Maintains employer pension plans, medical benefits, dental plans, and group life insurance
  • Maintains vacation/sick day benefits
  • Maintains contact with co-workers and friends
  • Focuses interest in the workplace and not the disability
  • Maintains dignity and self-worth by remaining productive
  • Maintains necessary job skills
  • Alleviates feelings of dependency and lack of control
  • Being able to return earlier to a healthy and productive life


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