It’s common sense that a good safety culture can reduce accidents and time lost due to injuries. It can also improve employee productivity and morale. But how can you prove that the money spent on safety will provide greater savings down the line? Experts say the savings do exist, and looking at the actual costs of an injury would make a good case for investing in safety now.
Knowing how much workplace injuries cost is crucial in determining safety’s ROI, and could help convince upper management to invest more in safety.
Most estimates on the cost of injuries are much lower than what an injury or death would actually cost. This is because those estimates only take into account the direct costs (workers’ comp, medical costs, and indemnity payments) associated with the injury. However, there are also indirect costs related to all accidents. Indirect costs include loss of productivity, workplace disruptions, clean-up time, training new employees, legal fees, and an increase in insurance premiums.
According to the National Safety Council (NSC), indirect costs could be more then double the direct costs of an injury – and that’s on the low end of the scale. Other studies have claimed that indirect costs of injuries can be as much as 17 times the direct costs.
OSHA’s $afety Pays Program is a free tool that employers can use to assess the impact of occupational injuries and illnesses on their profitability, and to determine how much accidents are costing their company. According to one OSHA study, a good safety and health program can save $4 to $6 for every $1 invested.
Safety is an investment, not an expense, and it will result in savings down the line.