08 April 2016

Understanding the economic impact of injuries in the workplace

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It is estimated workplace injuries negatively impact the Australian economy to the tune of over $60 billion per year, or over 4 per cent of the nation’s GDP.

Safe Work Australia has provided a snap shot of the Australian workshops compensation landscape in the 2012-13 Australian Workers’ Compensation Statistics report.

According to the report, a staggering 1.5 million collective weeks of work were lost in that period, undoubtedly having a significant impact on productivity across Australia, as well as Gross Domestic Profits.

Experts across the country agree, when it comes to managing workplace injuries the sooner you act the sooner your employee can return to work. 

With an estimate cost of $1000 per absent worker it makes sense both from an economic and organisational perspective that a company must be constantly reviewing their policies and procedures to ensure a smooth transition back into the workplace for their injured workers.

In an exclusive interview with Belinda Ayres, Manager People and Culture from the City of Kingston, we asked for her insights on her company’s workplace safety program.  

What advice would you give yourself if you could start your workplace safety program again?  

The advice I would give myself if I were looking to start a workplace safety program is to allow additional time to engage stakeholders in the change management process.  The differing levels of knowledge and understanding of both strategic and operational risks which occurs across an organisation with key stakeholders cannot be underestimated in terms of engagement and understanding the rationale for a workplace safety program.

Do you have 3 tips for those looking to reduce claims? 

  • Understand your strategic and operational organisational risks
  • Establish a panel of preferred allied health professionals who understand your business and the philosophy of your injury management and rehabilitation process
  • Seek to adopt a ‘preventative’ approach to injury management and rehabilitation is key

What is your biggest priority for the next 12 months?

Evidenced based decision making based on the future demography of Council and planning to address these challenges.

Akolade has just released their upcoming Injury Prevention Conference that will be held in Sydney this June. This conference offers a holistic approach to reducing workplace injuries and insurance costs. For more information, please click here.

Being brought up in a typical Chinese family in Australia, Vivian takes pride as an ABC (Australia-born Chinese) where she happily embraces both the Chinese and Australian cultures. 

In high school, Vivian wanted to become a fashion designer, however she has developed a passion for running events after working backstage for multiple live shows. Prior to starting at Akolade, Vivian worked 4 years in the wine industry and she misses the wine tasting sessions and openly drinking on the job. As the Marketing Coordinator, Vivian enjoys using her creativity to design unique and fun campaigns for each event. In her spare time, Vivian loves to spend time with her two adorable cat and dog. 

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