Corporate financial decision-makers' perceptions of workplace safety

Accid Anal Prev. 2007 Jul;39(4):767-75. doi: 10.1016/j.aap.2006.11.007. Epub 2007 Jan 9.


This study, through a random national survey, explored how senior financial executives or managers (those who determined high-level budget, resource allocation, and corporate priorities) of medium-to-large companies perceive important workplace safety issues. The three top-rated safety priorities in resource allocation reported by the participants (overexertion, repetitive motion, and bodily reaction) were consistent with the top three perceived causes of workers' compensation losses. The greatest single safety concerns reported were overexertion, repetitive motion, highway accidents, falling on the same level and bodily reaction. A majority of participants believed that the indirect costs associated with workplace injury were higher than the direct costs. Our participants believed that money spent improving workplace safety would have significant returns. The perceived top benefits of an effective workplace safety program were increased productivity, reduced cost, retention, and increased satisfaction among employees. The perceived most important safety modification was safety training. The top reasons senior financial executives gave for believing their safety programs were better than those at other companies were that their companies paid more attention to and emphasized safety, they had better classes and training focused on safety, and they had teams/individuals focused specifically on safety.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Accident Prevention / economics*
  • Administrative Personnel / economics
  • Administrative Personnel / psychology*
  • Cost-Benefit Analysis*
  • Data Collection
  • Female
  • Financial Management*
  • Humans
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Male
  • Perception*
  • Professional Corporations
  • Safety Management*
  • United States
  • Workers' Compensation
  • Workplace