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Injury Claims by First-Year Employees Has Increased

Injury Claims by First-Year Employees has Increased

April 27, 2022
In the manufacturing and warehouse sectors, 42% of workers' compensation claims were filed by first-year employees in 2021 versus 31% in 2011.

Looking at the past 10 years of workers' compensation claims, a survey released last month by Selective Insurance found that employees in 2021 reported workplace-related injuries 18% earlier in their tenure than employees in 2011 – after 5.2 years of service compared to 6.4 years.

Reported injuries in an employee's first year on the job have also increased between 2011 and 2021, with 38% of workers' compensation claims filed by first-year employees in 2021 versus 32% of first-year employees filing claims in 2011.

"Our long- and short-term data about employees' tenure at the time of workplace injury demonstrates the importance of ongoing and effective employee training and safety management across all industries," said Paul Kush, executive vice president, Chief Claims Officer, Selective Insurance, in a statement.

"With labor shortages and the challenging hiring environment, tenured employees may be taking on additional responsibilities which are why workplace injury prevention strategies to help employees stay safe should be top-of-mind for businesses," Kush added.

Workplace Injury Trends By Industry and First Year on the Job

Between 2011 and 2021, the percentage of reported first-year employee injuries has gradually increased across industries that Selective monitors, aside from construction contractors, according to its workers' compensation claims data:

  • Nonprofit, Education, Religious, and Municipal Organizations: 28% of workers' compensation claims were filed by first-year employees in 2021 versus 19% in 2011.
  • Manufacturing and Wholesalers: 42% of workers' compensation claims were filed by first-year employees in 2021 versus 31% of claims filed by first-year employees in 2011.
  • Retail and Professional Services: 43% of workers' compensation claims were filed by first-year employees in 2021 versus 36% of claims filed by first-year employees in 2011.
  • Construction Contractors: 40% of workers' compensation claims were filed by first-year employees in 2021 versus 40% of claims filed by first-year employees in 2011.

"The incidence of first-year employee injuries at many types of companies reveals that no business or entity is immune from the need for a safety orientation process for people new to their job. To minimize risks, all employers must ensure new employees receive orientation on workplace risk management including safety hazards, emergency response plans, and safe driving expectations if company vehicles are operated," said Scott Smith, vice president, Director of Safety Management, Selective Insurance, in a statement.

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