Disability Management: Opportunities for Employer Action

The Conference Board of Canada, 63 pages, October 28, 2013
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This report offers the perspectives of employees and supervisors on their organizations’ disability management programs, and provides employers with advice and guidance on how to manage absenteeism more effectively.

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Document Highlights

Disability Management: Opportunities for Employer Action explores how employers can avoid employee absences by implementing prevention initiatives, wellness programs and supports, stay-at-work programs, and appropriate accommodation and return-to-work practices. The report also presents information on the types of disability management practices in place in Canadian workplaces, including sick leave and disability coverage. The research is based on a national survey, which was conducted by The Conference Board of Canada between February and March 2013 of 2,004 individuals currently employed on either a part- or full-time basis, including 727 front line managers who supervise or manage other people in the workplace. The research highlights the actual experiences of employees who have taken a short- or long-term leave of absence from work and the front line managers, who are responsible for supporting these employees.

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Table of Contents

Executive Summary

Chapter 1—Introduction

  • Purpose of the Report

Chapter 2—Disability Prevention

  • Accident Prevention and Safety Programs
  • Identifying and Addressing Physical and Psychological Hazards in the Workplace

Chapter 3—Wellness Programs and Supports

  • Programs Offered to Support Employees’Physical and Mental Health
  • Employee Knowledge of How to Access Supports
  • Efficacy of Supports
  • Assisting Employees Most in Need

Chapter 4—Stay-at-Work Programs

  • Stay-at-Work Program Design
  • Prevalence of Stay-at-Work Programs
  • Employee Uptake of Stay-at-Work Programs

Chapter 5—Sick Leave and Disability Coverage

  • Employee Coverage for Medical Absences
  • Benefit Coverage

Chapter 6—Disability Management Practices

  • Written Procedures for Medical Leaves
  • Nature of Policies
  • Adherence to Policies
  • Communicating Disability Management Policies and Procedures

Chapter 7—The Employee Experience

  • Prevalence of Health-Related Leaves of Absence From Work
  • Type of Health-Related Leaves of Absence From Work
  • Length of Health-Related Leaves of Absence From Work
  • Difficulties in Getting Medical Treatment When an Employee Experiences Health Issues
  • Could the Leave of Absence From Work Have Been Avoided?
  • Medical Information Provided by Employees During a Leave of Absence From Work
  • Challenges Faced by Employees to Provide Regular Medical Information
  • The Use of Independent Medical Examinations
  • Remaining in Contact While the Employee Is on Leave
  • Impact of Medical Leave on Career Success

Chapter 8—The Role of Managers in Effective Disability Management

  • Preparing Managers for Their Role
  • Are Managers Equipped to Support Employees?

Chapter 9—Accommodation and Return to Work

  • Return to Work

Chapter 10—Conclusion

Appendix A—Methodology and Respondent Profile

Appendix B—Bibliography

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