OSHA Electronic Reporting – It’s time!
By Sue Winkler, Manager, EngageHR
Published December 5, 2017
The deadline for many employers to submit certain electronic data to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is quickly approaching. As announced in our article earlier this year, OSHA is now requiring employers with more than 249 employees, and all employers with 20 or more employees who are in a high-risk industry to file their OSHA 300A Summary through the electronic portal. All data must be submitted by December 15, 2017, for covered employers.
Here is a recap of some of the important aspects of this new requirement.
- Employee count is based on individual locations and does include temporary employees. The only exception to counting temporary employees is if the temporary agency has a representative onsite managing those employees.
- Be sure you accurately record workplace incidents. Our supplier sponsor, U.S. Compliance Corp. has stated that the major issue they find when assisting clients with recordkeeping is that incidents are recorded that do not meet the definition of recordable under OSHA. Organizations are over-reporting, which can have negative implications, especially with the new electronic reporting. Including more, and improper data could result in elevated incident rates that are not accurate. This could put your organization under unwarranted scrutiny and could trigger an OSHA visit if the incident rate is above their threshold.
- If you are a public employer, you are exempt from the electronic reporting requirement for now. The Illinois state equivalent of OSHA, which has jurisdiction over public employers, has chosen NOT to follow this federal electronic reporting requirement.
- Confirm that your NAICS (North American Industry Classification System) codes are accurate. It is extremely important that your organization is categorized correctly. Not only do these codes determine if you are in a high-risk industry, but they contribute to your experience rating and, ultimately, the cost of your workers’ compensation insurance.
- To determine if you are considered a high-risk industry, you will need to know the first 4 digits of your NAICS code. OSHA has published a list of industry codes that fall into the high-risk category.
- Using the portal is fast and easy if you have your data organized. It should take approximately 15 minutes to enter the required information. But don’t wait until the last minute! Start planning now to ensure your data is accurate.
Our March 8, 2018 HR Conference will include a session on OSHA recordkeeping. We hope you will mark your calendar and plan to attend. Watch your email and our website www.hrsource.org for additional details on this information-packed day.
Our HR Hotline staff is always available to answer safety or any HR-related questions for Management Association members. Call 800-448-4584 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.