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Pre-Employment Exams Benefit Both Employer and Employee

Proper expectations can help prepare employees, ease anxiety about exam

Block HSMASON, Ohio (October 5, 2015) – You’ve been through a grueling interview process and have finally been offered the job; however, one small step awaits: the pre-employment exam.

A pre-employment exam is an exam given by a medical professional to an employee who has accepted a position within the workplace. The exam helps employers identify mental and physical health issues that may indicate if an employee is not capable of performing the essential functions of the particular job. It also identifies what accommodations may be required in the employee’s work environment to assist the employee with performing those functions.

Dale Block, MD, a family physician with Premier Family Care of Mason, says those who have been ordered to receive a pre-employment exam should keep these key points in mind:

It’s a focused exam – A pre-employment exam is not a routine physical. The examiner will tailor the exam based on the description of the job that has been offered.

“The exam can’t focus on certain issues that aren’t part and parcel of the job where the employee would get disqualified,” says Dr. Block, who practices within Premier HealthNet. “If you’ve got an employee who was going to be doing an office job and does not have a lot of physical requirements, then you can’t have the employee do a lot of physical requirements during the exam that do not match the job.”

It requires preparation – An employee should prepare for their pre-employment exam just as if they were going to a regular physical. They should have a copy of their job description in case the examiner has not yet received it, and should be aware of what should be tested.

“Employees need to prepare for the pre-employment examination by making sure they understand what the job is and the requirements for the job be it physical or emotional so they know when they go to the exam what they should be tested on,” Dr. Block says. 

It benefits both parties – A pre-employment exam may be ordered by an employer, but the benefit extends to the employee as well. Its findings can protect an employee from taking on a job that they are not mentally or physically ready to handle or may identify potential limitations that require accommodations to assist the employee to perform the essential job functions. 

It offers a roadmap to solutions – Just because a health issue is discovered during a pre-employment exam does not mean the employee is not a good fit for the job. More often than not, it simply provides a blueprint that employers can use to make adjustments in the work environment to help that employee better succeed. 

“In today’s work environment, we are able to make numerous adjustments to help employees work to their best potential,” Dr. Block says. “We have desks that go up and down for people who need to stand periodically. We have other kinds of aids for individuals with hearing issues. These are all minor accommodations that most employers will make in order to accept an applicant.”

For more information on pre-employment exams or to find a Premier HealthNet provider near you, visit www.premierhealthnet.com/provider