Workers’ compensation claims are more vital towards the contemporary economy than ever before, with many businesses of all shapes and sizes seeing a notable increase in the amount of claims they have to handle. Despite the fact that effectively managing workers’ comp claims is a fundamental aspect of business success, many entrepreneurs and business managers are struggling and failing when it comes to expediting the process.
Luckily, a basic reminder of how your HR department handles workers’ comp claims can help managers and everyday employees alike when it comes to explaining the basics of this issue. Here’s everything you need to know about HR and workers’ comp claims.
HR is almost always involved
Some companies manage to handle workers’ comp claims without the involvement of HR, but this is almost universally in cases where those businesses are so small that they’re almost entirely managed by their owners. For sizable businesses and corporations in particular, it’s almost a matter of fact that workers’ comp claims will be managed by HR, which is typically charged with guaranteeing employees get what’s owed to them while ensuring all worker safety laws are being followed.
The basic duty of HR insofar as it pertains to workers’ comp claims is the managing of employee concerns about safety, the disbursing of payments in the event of a successful claim, and the re-training of workers to enable them to rejoin the workplace after an injury temporarily knocked them out of the ballgame.
That first point is one of the most essential; HR companies that don’t manage worker expectations about safety are staring a lawsuit in the face, and are failing their human capital by not maintaining ideal working conditions that enable greater (and safe) productivity.
One way that many businesses approach making the workplace more safe and workers’ comp claims more manageable is by employing the advocacy approach, which posits that businesses should embrace rather than flee from workers’ comp claims. Similarly, today’s HR professionals who are struggling to deal with workers’ comp claims are regularly advised to digitize their operations, which greatly cuts the costs of doing business while optimizing the entire compensation process.
Some companies have already tapped into the power of big data to gain expert insights into their workers’ compensation claims, for instance. These firms usually try to predict trends in employee health to ascertain when certain workers may need healthcare or a vacation and can eliminate unsafe practices by using algorithms and data to discern which business operations are the most dangerous for workers’ health.
What workers should know
The HR department isn’t the only actor involved in workers’ comp claims; employees obviously have a vested interest in understanding how HR officials operate if they’re trying to file a claim. A number of tips for workers who are dealing with workers’ comp claims can help you better understand this often-dizzying process that’s seldom fun but virtually always necessary. It’s imperative to properly document every injury and to report them in a timely manner, for instance, if you don’t want HR officials to shoot down your comp claim. As a worker, if you feel that your employer is not handling your claim properly, you should seek out the advice of an experienced workers’ compensation attorney.
HR officials are usually tasked with investigating the claims of workers, though these are by no means exhaustive and prying looks into the personal lives of employees. Rather, they’re often small operations wherein HR professionals ascertain the validity of claims by double checking medical records and surveillance footage.
Ultimately, skilled HR teams understand that workers’ comp is ultimately something that benefits companies rather than something which should be shunned and stunted at every available opportunity to do so.