The Safe Work and Return to Work Awards are a great way to recognise the exceptional level of work by businesses and individuals.
Last year, there were three finalists in the Best individual contribution to rehabilitation and return to work category:
Congratulations to all the finalists, in particular Nancy Andrain who took out the title.
Nancy has been the Injury Care and Recovery Manager for Lendlease Queensland for the past six years, supporting 810 staff in their wellness journey and returning them to their best lifestyle after an injury or illness and ultimately back to work.
Nancy noted and took steps to address a disconnect between site personnel and corporate personnel. She set out to change the mindset of the managers to demonstrate genuine care for their employees and encourage and support them to participate in the rehabilitation and return to work planning process (e.g. by collaborating to develop suitable duties plans). So, when injured workers believe they’re legitimately cared for and supported, it motivates them to want to get better and to actively participate in their own recovery.
Nancy adopted and embraced an ethics-based philosophy on return to work, underpinned by science and knowledge. It involves three core pillars:
- Recognising that a business’ most valuable assets are its employees and they must commit to assisting them navigate the return-to-work process.
- Providing reasonable accommodations for individuals with a physical or mental health injury to enable them to perform the essential functions of their jobs or another appropriate job.
- Establishing an employer return to work program that is interactive, immersive, participatory and collaborative. This allows all stakeholders to explore options and arrive at the best outcomes for the employees.
Nancy’s greatest achievement in her role was designing, constructing and implementing an employee app called LEWI (Lendlease Employee Wellness Information). The app is a digital wellbeing toolkit that supports staff to take appropriate steps to ensure their physical and psychological safety at work. It acts as a gateway to resources, products and services related to wellness, mental health and psychological safety.
The app aims to empower people managers to seek support in managing and looking after the health, safety and wellbeing of their teams. It’s available to staff 24/7, which means staff can access support when they need it (even if it’s the middle of the night). It’s also a mechanism for our staff to be able to check in and monitor themselves and reach out for additional support if they need it.
Nancy finds that the most rewarding part of her role is supporting staff to get back to early and safe work and back to being independent and healthy. Nancy has made a positive impact on rehabilitation and return to work outcomes for the business including:
- halving the average cost of claims since 2018
- a stay at work rate of 80%
- 100% improvement of projected app adoption
- an average user rating 7.86 out of 10 for the app.