This 2016 WCI session’s speaker was Bob Patterson, MPT, MBA, CAE, Executive Vice President/Co-Founder, Briotix Inc., Thousand Oaks, CA.
Pre-employment, post-offer (PEPO) candidate testing has proven to be an effective means of reducing incidence rates and workers’ compensation costs. This session highlighted the nature of this risk management tool with regard to legal issues, implementation strategies, expected outcomes, clinical relevance, and a review of some case studies.
Mr. Patterson discussed PEPO and its relevancy. Some of the reasons a company would want a PEPO testing are that the company might be experiencing the following:
- High injury rates
- High turnover
- Increased injury with new hires
- Higher workers’ compensation costs
The uses of functional employment testing were also discussed and are:
- Conditional offer of employment
- Fit for duty following an injury or loss
- Job transfer
- To obtain baseline data
- Job placement
A number of different legislation was passed that impacts PEPO. Some of these are The Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADAE). Perhaps the most significant, however, has been The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) which prohibits discrimination in the hiring of individuals with a disability. Here, among other factors, there must be a “reasonable accommodation” made that can make changes to the way the job is performed. (However, the courts’ interpretation of “reasonable” is sometimes difficult to interpret.)
Mr. Patterson presented several case studies that showed that return on investment can be dramatic with PEPO. While it has been shown to not predict injury, PEPO has been shown to reduce risk of injury and workers’ compensation costs. It was also pointed out that when using PEPO, it is important that job descriptions document all of the essential functions and critical demands of the job.
It may take time, even years, to see the benefits of PEPO, but for those that have used it and as pointed out in the case studies, quite dramatic results can be seen.