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OSHA Clarifies Injury Reporting Process for Temp Staffers

June 24, 2014 | Staffing Blog


One of the tricky parts of the employer/staffing agency relationship could be determining which company is responsible for reporting any on-the-job injuries. Fortunately for both parties, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is pretty clear on the rules. 

Here are some key points to keep in mind: 

  • Illnesses and injuries should be recorded only on one employer’s injury log. Usually this is the host employer’s responsibility.
  • The final say on who has responsibility for record keeping comes down to supervision. Who is supervising the employee on a day-to-day basis? OSHA defines this day-to-day supervision as “in addition to specifying the output, product or result to be accomplished by the person’s work, the employer supervises the details, means, methods and processes by which the work is to be accomplished.” 
  • Even if the staffing agency has an on-site representative that person is probably not responsible for day-to-day supervision and most likely doesn’t have the same authority as the host employer’s management team and supervisors.
  • The staffing agency should regularly communicate with its workers and the host employer to stay abreast of any problems or to ensure any injuries and illnesses are recorded and reported. 
  • Both companies should establish an appropriate method of communication and spell out the details in the contract. Staffing agencies will want to know if a company is experiencing an unusually large number of injuries and could potentially be a hazardous place to work.

As part of OSHA’s Temporary Worker Initiative, it is providing a series of guidance documents to clarify safety and health requirements when temporary workers are employed by a staffing agency and a host employer.

These discussions began last summer as OSHA began to gather information on the use of temporary staffing and proper safety training. Injury reporting and record keeping was a big part of the conversation. At that time, Allegiance Staffing owner Tom Landry joined with other staffing companies and the American Staffing Association (ASA) for an initial meeting with OSHA representatives. 

This summer, we see OSHA is spelling out the rules. Read more about injury record-keeping and watch the Allegiance Blog for more updates and information.