What to look for in a workers’ compensation provider

Workers’ compensation insurance is required for most employers, so you will have many options when choosing a workers’ compensation plan provider. However, the decision is not as straightforward as it seems, and it can have a big impact on your company’s future. Managing workers’ comp well can give you a financial advantage, but mismanaging it can bring your business to a standstill.

The purpose of workers’ comp is simple: to protect employees and employers. The required coverage protects both parties when an employee is injured on the job. It covers medical treatment for the injured worker and reimbursement for lost wages if they’re unable to return to work during recovery. In turn, the employer is protected against lawsuits due to injuries.

Every workers’ compensation company must conform to state statutes on coverage terms, limits of liability and benefits. To this extent, you’ll get the same insurance policy from any company you choose. Beyond that, however, there are many variables that determine the value you get for the premium you pay.

As a policyholder, you benefit the most when you choose a carrier that acts like a partner, invested in the success of your business. Workers’ comp is required, but it can be an advantage that protects your people and your bottom line.

To make the best decision, start by looking for these qualities in your workers’ compensation company:

1. Customer Service

Your provider should be easy to access when you have questions or concerns about claims, premium payments, workplace safety or anything else. You should have the option of online self-service, but you should also be able to easily reach a real person to help you when you need it. Your carrier should have a customer service line that you can call any time with questions. The customer service representative may connect you with another internal expert who can help.

2. Technology

As a business owner or manager, you have a lot on your plate. You don’t have hours to spend managing your work comp policy every day. Look for a provider with a solid customer portal, and online tools that let you:

  • Pay your bill
  • Report injuries
  • Manage claims
  • View reports

3. Expertise

Choose a company that specializes in workers compensation insurance. A specialized insurance provider can save you money in the long run. Its experts deeply understand the region’s workers’ comp laws and can better equip you to avoid lawsuits and other potential costs associated with workplace incidents. 

4. Safety resources and support

Your work comp carrier should share your goal of keeping your employees safe at work. After all, it’s in everyone’s interest – yours, your employees’, and the carrier’s – to prevent injuries in the first place rather than deal with the consequences of unsafe working conditions and practices. A valuable carrier will provide access to safety and risk management tools. Ask about an insurance provider’s safety support services. This might include a support center phone line, opportunities to speak with safety consultants or even in-field safety professionals who visit your workplace and provide personalized insight. If you don’t have a detailed safety program at your business, your workers’ compensation company should be equipped and willing to help you develop one.

5. Claims management support

If an injury does occur, successfully managing the claim will result in the best outcome for your employee and your business. Workers compensation companies are not out to avoid paying claim costs – they want successful outcomes, just like you and your employees. Ask what your carrier has in place to ensure an injured employee will get the best possible care as quickly as possible. A valuable carrier should also have resources to help you plan for an injured employee’s return to work. An earlier return to work is associated with better outcomes for the employee and your business.

Choose your workers’ compensation coverage provider wisely

The best way to reduce your work comp premium is to prevent injuries and effectively manage claims. A workers compensation company that genuinely seeks to partner with you will have lots of resources to help you do both. The coverage details of your policy will be similar from carrier to carrier. That’s why it’s crucial to find a workers’ comp provider like RMI that offers more than just a policy.

More articles on managing workers’ comp for your company: 

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