Most employers know it’s their responsibility to keep their employees safe. But too many small businesses think that only applies to dangerous jobs like construction. Regardless of the industry in which you operate, your employees are at risk of being injured.
The best way to protect your employees and simultaneously ensure compliance is to partner with a Professional Employer Organization (PEO). A PEO handles risk management by giving you access to experts who can help you create and implement safety policies. When it comes to keeping workers safe, a PEO manages risks, audits, training, return to work programs, and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) compliance.
Risk management is a process through which you identify, test, and prioritize risks to your company’s workers, assets, and profits. With the right approach to risk management, you can keep your employees safe without ignoring your bottom line.
Effective risk management begins with your new hire training program. Even if your small business operates in an office setting, you still need to have a safety training program to ensure every employee understands how to stay safe on the job. Your safety training program is even more important if your small business operates in a high-risk environment like construction.
A PEO helps you set up and manage this training program, along with any others that may be needed. With compliance experts guiding you, your training program will help keep your employees safe.
Just as you may conduct a financial audit, you should also routinely conduct safety audits. You do this by reviewing your safety procedures and training programs to ensure that they provide your workers with the correct information.
Conducting a safety audit also ensures that your training programs are compliant. Audits can also uncover gaps in your company’s processes. Your PEO will do this audit for you and work with you to make any changes.
Safety training programs are vital to staying compliant and keeping your employees safe at work. The best training programs are also not done just once when you make a new hire but are a regular part of your company culture.
Best-in-class PEOs use online education combining text, video, and testing. Workers must complete these training programs regularly, at least once per year. Your PEO will also update the information as new laws are enacted and existing laws change.
OSHA has strict guidelines that must be followed to keep your workplace safe and your company compliant. Violations of OSHA regulations can result in serious injuries to your employees and extremely costly fines and penalties for your company.
OSHA regulations require employers to train employees on the use of certain equipment, use protective gear, among many other detailed and sometimes confusing regulations. Navigating and understanding the complex regulations creates unique challenges for small business owners, who must operate their business along with trying to figure out how to stay out of compliance trouble with OSHA.
A PEO will staff OSHA compliance experts who can provide you with all the information you need. They will help you navigate complex situations, ensure you have the required OSHA posters and notices and work diligently to ensure your company stays in compliance with all OSHA regulations.
Return to Work Program
A return to work program helps employees who have been injured get back to work faster. Return to work programs engage employees at work even if they are unable to get back to their full-time position. So long as their doctor approves it, you can have an employee come back to work in a less strenuous position, taking on light work duties that still allow them time to heal.
The biggest financial benefit is that it gets your employee off workers’ compensation while letting them start earning a salary again. This means your workers’ comp coverage may not cost you as much because their claim is less.
With a PEO, they help you manage your return to work program, making sure that employees are safe and do not re-injure themselves. But a PEO also provides you with access to potential workers’ compensation cost savings. PEO workers’ comp insurance comes with benefits such as pay-as-you-go premiums. Your PEO has also paid the upfront costs for workers’ comp coverage, which means you simply cover the monthly premiums, which could be less than what you could get on your own because your PEO may have a better claims history, resulting in lower premiums.
Don’t Settle for Substandard PEOs
PEOs are meant to make your life easier while growing your bottom line. If a PEO does not offer at least the above services to you, they are not worth your time. The best PEOs will provide you with access to compliance experts who help you avoid costly fines and penalties. These experts also work diligently to keep your employees safe on the job through training and return to work program. The right PEO for you will also give you access to immediate workers’ compensation insurance cost savings by joining their existing program, which may have a better claims history than your company.
It’s hard enough to operate your small business. Get the help and support you deserve by partnering with a PEO that has your company’s best interests in mind.