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All business owners dread the words “workman’s compensation.” For some (factory owners, construction company owners, etc.), it’s a constant concern, while for others (business owners located in offices), it’s just a vague fear in the back of their minds.

That’s not to say workman’s compensation is evil, no one would argue that. Instead, the problem is how much it costs. In serious cases, insurance rates will go up for the company, some many may come out of pocket for the company, and there may be a long-term absence, an employee who may be crucial but whom you can’t permanently replace.

To lower the chances of such a high cost, the best option is to limit the chance of accidents in your business. This is easier for some than for others, but try to look out for these five potential issues at your place of work.

  • Slips

You may think some businesses are in the clear on this one, but slips can happen anywhere. In order to avoid the potential for injury, keep any potential spill areas well-marked. Educate your employees on the need to immediately clean up anything that spills on the floor. Ideally, in an office, use carpet everywhere and remove anything like sockets that might stick out from the wall. In warehouse, factories, and similar locations, it is insisted that all employees wear shoes with a strong grip and that they drink liquids in set, clearly marked locations.

  • Overexertion

This is one we’ve probably all had some training in, but we must remind employees to use common sense at all times. Don’t lift heavy objects without taking proper precautions. Get others to help if it feels too heavy. Lift with the legs. These simple points, illustrated in diagrams on the wall, ideally, can keep employees watchful of situations that might expose them to injury.

  • Being struck by an object

In a factory, this is a constant concern, but problems can arise in offices as well, where unsecured computers or even office supplies can strike employees. Insist that all heavy objects are securely stationed and that no one puts anything heavy on a high shelf or windowsill.

  • Repetitive motion

Whether it’s the same motion on the assembly line or the same movement of the mouse for hours every day, repetitive motion can cause longterm injuries. The best way to avoid these problems is to insist employees get up regularly to stretch and move around. That way their motions change up and give their bodies a chance to recover.

  • Workplace violence

It’s rare, but it does happen. Make sure to offer your employees an open-door policy when it comes to confrontation with their fellow workers. Giving employees every option to avoid violence is key to keeping the workplace not just safe but happy.

These points are all important to keeping the workplace safe and productive. And a word of warning, don’t think that it’s easier to simply outsmart employees when it comes to workman’s comp instead of putting in the effort beforehand. While this is a common technique among the less ethical business owners, sophisticated lawyers make very good careers out of making examples of such entrepreneurs. It’s better to avoid the problem now instead of trying to avoid responsibility later.

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