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Why Analyse Staff Absence Patterns?

Employers who manage attendance improve productivity and save money.  It is the best way to tell if your company has a staff absence problem.  Then you can assess why staff is absent, and what can be done about it. Only then can effective absence management solutions be initiated and absence rates diminished.

Reasons for Staff Absence

Absence can occur primarily for three main reasons.  The first is due to illness, which can include anything from a common cold to a chronic medical condition.  If the illness last for seven days or longer, a Statement of Fitness for Work is required.

The second reason people may be absent from work is through authorised absences, which include, training courses, maternity leave or scheduled holidays.

The third reason employees may be absent is that they do not wish to come into work.  This may be due to family responsibilities, workplace stress or simply because there is something else that they would rather be doing.  Repeated unauthorised absences are often addressed with disciplinary action.

Preventing Staff Absence

Most absence is due to short term illness.  According to the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas) short term absence accounts for 80% of all absences.  Absences are expensive because they often lead to paying for temporary replacement staff, missing deadlines, reduced customer satisfaction levels, dampened reputations and low staff morale.

What can be done about it? Absences can be controlled once they are efficiently monitored.  Many companies set triggers, or points in which absences are addressed with staff, both conversationally and in the form of some type of disciplinary action.  This very much depends on nature of the absence. Types of absence measurement tools include the ‘lost time rate’ and the ‘Bradford Index’.

One of the most important things a company can do is to record employee absences.  This includes sickness absence, holiday and other authorised absences such as jury duty.  Our Holiday Scheduler is a simple, low cost way of recording and managing absence.  For more information, contact MTIS or download your free trial today.