Good Hiring Practices May Expose Red Flags

Finding employees for the construction trades has become a real challenge, and even worse, finding skilled employees. Everyone is frustrated with the labor shortage, but cutting corners on sound hiring practices can lead to a worse situation than had you not hired at all. Every year, ROII can trace a large percentage of claim costs back to poor hiring practices.

Employees, unlike buying a used car from a dealer, do not come with a warranty. You take them as they are, and once you have signed on the dotted line, you now become responsible for their injuries and workers' comp claims, even "pre-existing" injuries. There are no guarantees when it comes to hiring, but there are steps in the hiring process that you can take to help minimize the odds of inheriting any baggage.

Work History

A complete work history can help in many ways and can also serve as a loss control tool for certain types of workers' comp claims. A work history from when the person first entered the workforce can be utilized to help with certain injury claim situations and expose gaps in employment. These gaps can sometimes be red flags, and determining what occurred during these gaps is crucial. This work history can also give you a chance to contact previous employers regarding past performance. Many millions of dollars could have been saved by employers had they just made one phone call to a previous employer.

Post Job Offer – Pre-Hire Physicals and Drug Screens

Pre-hire physicals and drug screens can also serve as deterrents for those who may have pre-existing injuries or choose to engage in drug activity in the workplace. Both can be a recipe for disaster and even lead to the loss of another valued employee. Hiring people who are not physically fit to do the type of work task that you are asking them to perform may also lead to an expensive workers' comp claim and the loss of an employee.

Background Checks

Background checks are another good hiring practice that should be added to your hiring checklist. Consulting with an employment attorney is always a good idea, but background checks can be worth their weight in gold. Avoiding just one bad hire can pay for a background check many times over.

Drug and Return-to-Work Policies

Drug and Return-to-work policies presented during the hiring process can also help deter those who may wish to engage in drug activity or file a misrepresented workers' comp claim. There are many company policies that can serve a wide range of situations and are very beneficial to your company.

Pre-Work Safety Training and Demonstration of Skills

We often see a large percentage of injuries that occur in the first thirty days of employment. Making sure an employee understands the company's safety expectations and demonstrates knowledge of skills, whether running equipment and tools or setting up fall protection, is paramount before your new hire goes out onto the worksite.

Obviously, no one likes to make hiring mistakes. A lot of time and money goes into finding the right employees for your workforce, so it's a terrible waste to overlook red flags – no matter how appealing a candidate is on paper. But good hires can make all the difference when it comes to keeping claim costs down and productivity up.

If learning more about protecting your company and employees while earning great refunds sounds interesting, our online Intro to Retro Refresher class may be a great idea for you.

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