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How to Reduce Employee Absenteeism

We all know things happen. Maybe the kids are sick, you have a broken water pipe in your house, or the dog got out and is running wild through the neighborhood.  This always seem to happen five minutes before you have to leave for work.  Employee absenteeism is something that plagues most businesses.  It is also something that most employers are not quite sure how to handle or where to start.  When employees aren’t at work, it affects not only productivity, but also morale.  According to a Mercer study, 35% of employers’ payroll goes to employee absenteeism and 8.7% of the payroll is for unexplained absences such as FMLA and temporary disability.

Time lost includes on the job injury, short term disability and family/medical leave.  There are several ways that you can help to control employees’ absences, perhaps the most important of those is communication.  There should be policies in place clearly describing what is expected out of the employee and make sure the employee understands the expectations.  If the employee does not comply, there should be a conversation with the employee to reiterate the guidelines and that they were not in compliance.  This way, there is no misunderstandings if it does continue to happen.

PTO plans are another way to help the employee build a bank of paid leave to be used for various reasons.  By doing this, you are not only setting the expectation of how often you expect the employee to be at work, but the employee understands how much time you are willing to give them to take off of work.

Finally there is a direct correlation to employee absenteeism/productivity to their healthcare.  If an employee is not well there are two common scenarios; the employee stays home to get better and is not productive at all or they still go to work and are certainly not as productive, but could also spread their illness to others, neither option is ideal.  That is why Wellness programs have been implemented in several organizations to spread the knowledge of healthy living and to prevent chronic conditions.

If you feel like you are having problems controlling employee attendance and would like to discuss further options, call us at 281-469-1800 to speak with one of our HR Consultants.
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