Characteristics of Successful Disability Management Programs

Research shows that successful disability management programs in organizations are characterized by:

  • Effective safety programs and working injury prevention approaches
  • A strong focus on health promotion and wellness programs, supported by the organization
  • Early intervention when a worker becomes ill or injured, combined with formal return-to-work programs that are supported by policies and procedures
  • Collaboration and cooperation between labour and management in support of retention policies, procedures and protocol
  • Effective and efficient communication systems within the organization, as well as between it and external community and government resources
  • Benefit programs that reward return-to-work activities instead of encouraging an ongoing disability status
  • Clearly identified disability management personnel
  • Competent disability management practitioners with specific education in disability management competencies and best practices
  • Creative use of transitional work options to address the individual needs of workers with disabilities during the return-to-work process
  • Adaptation and accommodation to ensure full participation in the workplace for all workers with disabilities
  • Ongoing evaluation and accountability of the program
  • A corporate culture that values employing, accommodating and retaining workers with disabilities