Supply chain solutions have never been more important than in today’s increasingly connected and online economy. Logistics—the art and science of getting products from here to there, on time, with thorough tracking and accounting—makes business happen these days. This time-critical work is what J.B. Hunt does.
Began as a trucking company in 1961, J.B. Hunt today embraces all aspects, and challenges, of a full-service logistics service, connecting products with people across the U.S. While it started with two brothers in Arkansas, J.B. Hunt now employs more than 30,000 people, approximately 20,000 of whom are truck drivers, all over the country.
Taking care of these people, at the core of their business’ success, is the job of Greer Woodruff, senior vice president of safety, security and personnel at J.B. Hunt.
“We started working with Emerge Diagnostics in 2016 as a pilot program,” says Woodruff. “We used a post-offer, pre-placement functional capacity test. Essentially, it’s a test that’s supposed to simulate job activities: stooping, bending, lifting, placing items, and so forth. It simulates the job. If someone can’t perform these duties, they would be disqualified from hiring.”
“If it is a work-related injury, it allows us to get the best medical care available for our employees.”
Post-offer, pre-employment functional capacity testing is common in the industry. After all, trucking involves a lot of sitting but also occasional lifting, bending, and twisting. There are a variety of means and measures for evaluating potential employees. “Emerge, with its technology, really stood out from the crowd.”
Pilot programs began in California and Illinois. “Over a short period it became clear that Emerge Diagnostics was more effective,” says Woodruff.
“Many of the claims are for neck, back, or shoulder pain,” Woodruff says. “Emerge allows us to determine whether there is an injury and whether it’s work-related. And if it is a work-related injury, it allows us to get the best medical care available for our employees.”
Most employees don’t think they’ll be injured on the job, he says: “Injury is something that happens to other people.”
“Emerge assists us in managing the health of our employees and keep them healthy on the job—which allows us to serve our customers even better.”
But injuries are a fact of business and a fact of life. “Emerge Diagnostics’ technology has assisted us as a company to reduce recordable-injury rates and loss-time due to injury.” Both recordable-injury and loss-time have declined by nearly half since implementing this technology.
Supply chain solutions operate on razor-thin thresholds. Healthy and capable employees are the heart of getting this essential work done.
“Emerge assists us in managing the health of our employees,” says Woodruff, “and keep them healthy on the job—which allows us to serve our customers even better.”