Top Reasons Why You Should Implement an Injury Management System in Your Organisation

Nobody says running a business was easy. From managing your employees (and contractors) to ensure your workplace is safe and compliant with all the necessary regulations, not to mention keeping a good eye on your finances, there are many moving parts to running a successful company.

However, one aspect of running a business that is often always overlooked, and yet essential, is injury management and return to work. Any business with employees is required to have an injury management system in place as well as an effective return to work program.

What is an Injury Management System and Return to Work Program?

An injury management system and a return to work program are the same. It is a requirement for all businesses, and it is designed to help injured workers make an early (and safe) return back into the workplace.

The system requires three entities to run smoothly. The first is the employer (your company), the second is a medical management team, and finally, the third is the insurer. All three parties must work together to ensure that employees are quickly reintegrated back into the workforce as soon as they are medically fit.

Benefits of Implementing an Injury Management System in Your Organisation

There are several benefits to implementing an injury management system in your organisation. Examples of these include:

  • The Ability to Retain Experienced Workers: The strength of any company lies in its workforce. Therefore, it is essential to do everything possible to keep highly motivated, top-performing employees in your company for as long as possible. Implementing an injury management system ensures that workers are quickly treated and integrated back into your workforce.
  • The Opportunity to Reduce Expenses: One of the secrets to growing any businesses is to reduce costs and increase profit. While it might seem like spending to take care of an injured employee is expensive, it is a cost-saving measure in the long term. This is because implementing an injury management system eliminates the need to hire and train a new employee as a replacement for the injured one. Additionally, it reduces the chances of paying high compensations costs to the injured worker.
  • It Helps Build Better Employee Relations: Employee-loyalty is quickly becoming outdated with more and more workers embracing the freelancing model. Unlike decades ago when companies expect employees to start and end their careers at their organisation, things are much different now. Implementing an injury management system in your organisation enables you to demonstrate to your employees that you can care about their welfare, thus eliciting loyalty from them.

Implementing an injury management system is no longer hard. This is because Beakon’s Injury Management System and Return to Work Module can be used to create, store and track all Workers Compensation information. It should be noted that this software could also be integrated with our Incident Reporting system, thus allowing companies to consolidate all documentation in a secure and confidential platform. You can grab a free trial here to see how this software can be quickly deployed across your organisation.

 

 

An Introduction to Incident Management

An Introduction to Incident Management

Incident management is one of the most critical IT support processes that an IT organization needs to get right. Service outages can be costly to the business and IT teams need an efficient way to respond to and resolve these issues quickly. According to a 2015 HDI study, incident management remains a top priority for 65% of IT teams around the world.

Incident management 101

Here’s how the IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL) defines an incident: “An unplanned interruption that causes, may cause, or reduces the quality of an IT Service.” Incident Management is an IT service management (ITSM) process that aims to restore normal service operation as fast as possible, minimizing the impact on the business and end user. A business application going down is an incident. The printer not working is also an incident.

A crawling-but-not-yet-dead web server can be an incident, too. It’s running slowly, and interfering with productivity. Worse yet, it poses the even greater risk of complete failure.” – Nick Wright, Service Operations Manager at Atlassian

Incident Management vs. Problem Management: A problem is just the not-yet-known root cause behind one or more incidents. In the incidents above where the printer is down and the network is creeping, a misconfigured router could be the underlying problem behind both. Incident management focuses on short-term solutions (not completing a root cause analysis to identify why an incident occurred) and on doing whatever is necessary to restore the service. We’ll talk about managing re-occurring incidents (underlying problems) in the problem management blog.

Mean time to resolution (MTTR)

Mean Time to Resolution (MTTR) is a service-level metric that measures the average elapsed time from when an incident is reported until the incident is resolved and is typically measured in business hours. MTTR is one of the key drivers of customer satisfaction, as users may be either completely down or forced to use workarounds until their incidents have been resolved.

Consequently, improving major incident response is one of the number one goals for IT teams, specifically around finding ways to lower MTTR and streamline the process of finding the root cause to prevent future outages. The below diagram outlines what’s included in the MTTR. A Forrester study found that most of the time is spent within the Investigation and Diagnosis phase. In fact it takes 70% of the time because IT teams find it difficult to collaborate and share valuable insights to quickly find an incident resolution.

Incident management priorities

So what are the key areas and priorities for incident management for IT teams?

  • Respond effectively so they can recover fast to define who is accountable for it.
  • Communicate clearly to their stakeholders, both service owners, those within the organization, but ultimately their customers.
  • Collaborate effectively to solve the issue faster as a team and remove barriers that prevent them from sharing and collaborating.
  • Continuously improve to learn from these outages and apply these lessons to improve a service or even refine the process in the future.
StatusPage: While every team uses different solutions for communication, we recommend a dedicated tool like StatusPage for incident communication. This provides a central source of truth for the current status of an incident as well as a record of past incident communication. Stakeholders can customize how they want to receive StatusPage updates; whether it’s over email, text message, or a ChatOps tool like HipChat.

 

Incident management process

An incident management process helps service desks investigate, record, and resolve service interruptions or outages. An Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) incident management workflow aims to reduce downtime and negative impacts. The IT Service Desk template comes with an incident management workflow, which ensures that you log, diagnose, and resolve incidents. We recommend you start with this workflow and adapt it to your business needs. When managed well, incident records can identify missing service requirements, potential improvements and future team member training.
An Introduction to Incident Management
The ITIL incident management process, in brief:

  1. Service end users, monitoring systems, or internal IT members report interruptions.
  2. The service desk describes and logs the incident. They link together all reports related to the service interruption.
  3. The service desk records the date and time, reporter name, and a unique ID for the incident. JIRA Service Desk does this automatically.
  4. A service desk agent labels the incidents with appropriate categorization. The team uses these categories during post-incident reviews and for reporting.
  5. A service desk agent prioritizes the incident based on impact and urgency.
  6. The team diagnoses the incident, the services effected, and possible solutions. Agents communicate with incident reporters to help complete this diagnosis.
  7. If needed, the service desk team escalates the incident to second-line support representatives. These are the people who works regularly on the effected systems.
  8. The service desk resolves the service interruption and verifies that the fix is successful. The resolution is fully documented for future reference.
  9. The service desk closes the incident.

Incident Management and its Importance

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The purpose of incident management is to reinstate normal service operations as fast as possible and mitigate the negative impact on business operations, thus making sure that the agreed levels of service quality are maintained. The operational state where CIs and services are performing within their agreed service parameters and operational levels is called ‘Normal service operation’.

There are two main aims of the incident management process:

– To restore services back to normal operation as fast as possible
– To mitigate the adverse effect of critical incidences on business operations.

ITIL Incident Management

According to ITIL terminology, an ‘incident’ is described as an unplanned interruption.

Incident management, as the name suggests, is the process that is used to manage the lifecycle of all incidents. Incidents can be identified by technical staff, reported and detected by event monitoring tools, be conveyed by communications from users (usually through a telephone call to the service desk), or reported by third-party suppliers and partners.

 

Objectives

The main objectives of the incident management process are as follows:

– Make sure that standardized procedures and methods are used for prompt and efficient response, documentation, analysis, reporting of incidents, and ongoing management.
– Improve the communication and visibility of incidents
– Improve the business perception of IT with the help of a professional approach, so that incidents will be resolved and reported quickly
– Line up incident management activities and prioritize them accordingly
– Enhance and maintain user satisfaction without losing the quality of IT services

Scope

Incident management includes any event which disrupts, or something which is capable of causing a disruption to the service. This includes events which are communicated directly by users – through an interface from event management to incident management tools – or through the service desk.

Value of incident management

– Ability to mitigate the risk of unplanned costs and labor for both  business and IT support staff
– Ability to detect and resolve incidents, which in turn results in lower downtime to the business, which means increased availability of the service
– Ability to line up IT activity to real-time business priorities
– Ability to identify the potential areas of improvement

 

Policies

– Incidents and their status must be reported in a timely manner.
– Incidents resolution should be within the timeframes acceptable to business.
– Maintaining Customer satisfaction is very important.
– Incident handling and processing should be in line with overall service levels and objectives
– All incidents should be managed and stored in a single management system
– All incidents should subscribe to a standard classification schema which is consistent across the business enterprise
– All incident records should be audited in regular intervals to ensure that entries are categorized correctly

Principles and Basic concepts

There are some basic things that need to be taken care of when considering incident management.

Timescales

Timescales should be agreed upon for all incident handling stages, based upon the overall incident response and the resolution targets within SLAs

Incident models

Many incidents are not new; there are some incidents which happen recurrently. For this reason, many organizations find it very helpful to predefine ‘standard’ incident models, so that they can be referred to when needed and applied to incidents as they occur.

The importance of having an incident management and reporting system

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You want to take your Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) responsibilities seriously, but how do you know you are meeting your obligations, and how do you prove it?

Is your workplace as safe as it could be? How well prepared is your organisation to prevent and manage incidents?

Such questions should always be fully and honestly answered by safety officers, and should always be matters for critical examination, specially in high-risk industries such as construction, Oil & Gas, Power plant, Roads & Buildings, chemicals and hazardous sectors.

An incident management/reporting system helps you answer these questions, and ensure that your company is always prepared to prevent and manage accidents, incidents, and near misses.

Incident Reporting is requirement of any occupational health and safety management system and when this is not done efficiently the flow on effect may result in excessive costs to the business.

A key element of an effective OHS system is a systematic approach to managing safety, including the necessary organisational structures, accountabilities, policies and procedures to create a Continuous Improvement Cycle.

An effective Safety Management System which can help to establish the framework of compliance with the two fundamental elements of most OHS legislation:

  • That employers provide and maintain a working environment that is safe and without risk
  • That employees take reasonable care for the health and safety of themselves and others

A systematic approach to incident reporting can help to identify trends in incident types and identify and maximise improvement opportunities across the whole system.

Also, periodic reviews of control measures and risk assessments should be conducted to ensure the control measures implemented are appropriate and effective and the risk assessments are still valid. This can be achieved through safety audits, regular workplace inspections, consultation with employees and review of incident investigations. Risk management should be built into all workplace activities that can give rise to safety issues.