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Case Study: Employee Safety With Superior Support

How would you manage the safety and well-being of more than 4,000 employees in 140 offices nationwide? That's exactly what Terracon, an employee-owned engineering consulting firm, must do every day. Given the firm’s considerable number of employees, Terracon needed a program to better protect its employees — both on and off the job.

The Challenge

Terracon had experienced a high rate of short-term disability claims in its various locations. The organization’s direct supervisors also had little experience navigating the short-term disability landscape, including providing stay-at-work and return-to-work support. Given that employee safety is a core value for Terracon, the firm was interested in finding a disability program that matched its commitment to ensuring all employees go home safely to their families every night.

Terracon needed to implement a disability management program that would:

  • Fit its specific needs and internal processes
  • Align with its core values
  • Provide employees with assistance to stay at work and avoid disability claims when possible
  • Help employees get back to work after a disability leave
  • Allow employees to stay productive at work and avoid leave when possible

Tailored Solutions

Terracon turned to the Workplace PossibilitiesSM program, which adapted to the firm’s structure and complemented its existing internal safety program. The Workplace Possibilities team learned about Terracon’s culture and analyzed its current disability management process before rolling out an approach. This helped them address health-related challenges on a case-by-case basis, rather than rolling out the program to all 4,000-plus employees at one time.

The program also helped Terracon’s HR team navigate and document accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA). Workplace Possibilities consultants assist Terracon teams in communicating with the employee and documenting necessary information to comply with ADAAA regulations.

Results That Work

The expertise provided by the Workplace Possibilities program helped Terracon better manage its short-term disability leaves. Access to the vocational, nurse and behavioral health experts help inform supervisors about how to best interact with and support employees. It also helps employees get back to work or stay at work with tailored accommodations.

Our collaboration with Terracon has also helped reduce stress on employees who are on leave or returning from it. Terracon’s HR team has noted that the program helps employees understand that they aren’t “just a number” but rather a key driver in the firm’s success. This support extends to supervisors who are better able to manage employees on leave and have support from experts in navigating the process.

With the use of the Workplace Possibilities program, Terracon has saved on costs due to short disability durations. Accommodations provided by Workplace Possibilities consultants have had a significant impact in getting employees back to work sooner than expected. These shorter disability durations have been key in reducing Terracon’s overall benefits costs as well.

When implementing the Workplace Possibilities program, employers can do it in a way that fits their unique needs. Terracon is a perfect example of how a customized approach to disability management can make all the difference.

More Information

See more about how The Standard helped Terracon to create a program that reduced disability leaves while supporting their culture of employee safety. Read another Terracon case study, Proactive Support Boosts Outcomes for Disability.

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