Completing and posting the OSHA Form 300A between February 1 to April 30 is an annual ritual for organizations with at least 11 employees. This Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses is used to record work-related sickness and injuries mandated by the Occupational Safety and Health Act. The Form 300A, which human resources staff usually completes, provides a safety snapshot for an organization. The information it presents comes from Form 300 Log of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses that details each incident and employment data that, if not readily available from an HR report, can be estimated. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, you should allow nearly one hour to prepare the 300A.
Start Point: the 300 Log
The Society for Human Resource Management recommends following OSHA guidelines and making sure all incidents involving unconsciousness, job transfer, restricted job activity, medical treatment beyond basic first aid, and time away from work were recorded in the 300 Log. Use this time to correct any errors such as checking the wrong box or inconsistent injury and illness descriptions. Should OSHA audit your organization, it will review your record-keeping forms and may impose a fine if the forms are not accurate. Once your 300 Log is complete, you can begin to prepare Form 300A.
Incident Statistics Entries
The left column of Form 300A covers what you recorded on your 300 Log. The right side presents company employment information.
Transfer the totals from columns G to J on your 300 Log to the first section of the left column, Number of Cases. Confirm that your total number of cases includes all log pages if you have more than one page. Enter "0" if you had no recordable incidents during the calendar year. You are required to post the 300A even if your organization was accident-free. Failure to do so puts the company at risk for a $7,000 fine.
The next section summarizes the number of missed work days or the number of days during which affected employees were transferred to other positions or had work restrictions. You pull the figure for this Number of Days section of Form 300A from the totals for columns K and L on the log, again confirming that you include all pages. Write "0" if there were no applicable days.
The last section for incident statistics, Injury and Illness Types, asks for the totals from Section M of your 300 Log for each of six categories:
- Skin disorders
- Respiratory conditions
- Hearing loss
- All other illnesses
Check each page of your 300 Log to ensure you included every case. Indicate no injuries or illnesses for any of these six types with a "0."
The right side of your 300A is reserved for company information. Enter your organization's name, address, industry and either its two-, three- or four-digit SIC, or Standard Industrial Classification, or its two- to six-digit NAICS number, or North American Industrial Classification.
Some organizations with multiple locations provide their HR departments with the employment statistics needed for the section below the company data: Annual average number of employees and Total hours worked by all employees last year. OSHA has a worksheet to help you estimate these two employment figures, however. To determine what to use for the number of employees, follow these steps:
- Gather totals for each class of employee on the payroll during the year: Full-time, part-time, seasonal, temporary hourly and salaried.
- Note how many pay periods you had for the year.
- Divide total employees by the number of pay periods.
- Round your answer to the next whole number.
If your company had 350 employees and 12 pay periods, your average number of employees per pay period is 29.17 after dividing 350 by 12. You would enter 29 as the Annual average number of employees due to OSHA's rounding guideline.
Estimating the total hours worked is also a four-step process:
- Note the number of full-time employees.
- Multiply the number of full-time employees by the number of hours a full-time employee works in a year, excluding paid time off. You may have some workers who were hired mid-year; adjust your numbers accordingly.
- Add to this figure any overtime hours worked by all employees, including seasonal help, part-timers and temps.
- Round the answer up to the next whole number. For example, 65.6 becomes 66 total hours worked by all employees in the calendar year covered by the 300A. Enter this number on the form.
Consider a company that had 32 full-time employees who worked 40 hours a week for 49 weeks because they had two weeks of paid vacation and five paid holidays. No one on the payroll worked overtime. This means each employee worked 1,960 hours during the year. The person completing the 300A would multiply 32 times 1,960 to get 62,720 hours. Rounding to the next highest whole number, the correct entry becomes 63,000 Total hours worked by all employees last year.
Before posting your 300A Summary in the employee lounge or another area where employees can view it, an executive in the organization, such as a general manager, must sign and date it.