Have a question about pre/post-employment testing programs? See our list of frequently asked questions below.
What is the purpose of a pre-placement exam?
A pre-placement exam is used after an offer is made to a candidate/new hire, an employer may require a medical examination to do the following:
- Compare the individual’s compatibility with the demands of the job
- Establish a baseline health status data for future comparison
- Determine pre-existing or concurrent health-related problems
- Identify any working conditions that may have an impact on the worker’s health and safety
- Proper placement of individuals into suitable positions without risk to worker or coworkers
What is a pre-placement functional exam?
A company may also choose to go a step further and request a functional assessment exam. This exam assists employers in placing employees in jobs that are physically suitable. Each assessment is tailored to the type of work to be performed. For instance, the job may require repetitive lifting, climbing, or other specialized physical or mental demands. These specific activities can be replicated in a testing facility and employees evaluated on their capabilities to perform the essentials of the job safely. Because exams can be specifically focused, it may eliminate potential occupational injuries and illnesses from occurring due to inappropriate job placement.
What are the benefits to using a pre-placement exam?
In addition to providing guidance to the employer about whether a job candidate is physically suited for a particular job, pre-placement physical exams also provide baseline data that may prove helpful if a worker’s comp claim is filed later. Worker’s comp laws require rehabilitation only to the level of physical functioning prior to a job-related injury or illness.
What is the procedure for a pre-placement exam?
The physical exam involves the following:
- Medical and health history questionnaire – completed by the individual prior to the actual team and reviewed with the individual by the examiner
- Physical exam by medical provider
- Functional assessment (optional)
The medical provider then makes the determination as to whether the applicant is qualified to do the essential functions of the job by comparing it with the job description/demands. This can be especially beneficial when considering individuals for safety sensitive jobs, like climbing, needing use of depth perception, operating dangerous equipment, and repetitive heavy lifting.