This month has seen the manufacturers’ organisation, the EEF, make a plea to the government to help businesses tackle sickness absence. They are wanting the government to consider subsidising private treatment for employees to reduce the burden on the NHS and help employers get employees back to work quicker.
Following the recent survey with Jelf on sickness absence, the EEF has felt it necessary to ask for consideration when the new Green Paper on workforce health is published later this year. The survey highlighted the increase in absence figures and costs within the manufacturing industry specifically but the worry is that this will translate across the wider workforce
The survey found:
- Over a quarter of respondents did not have processes in place to help employees with mental health issues
- 32% of companies do not measure the costs of sickness absence
- The manufacturing sector is estimated to be spending £0.6billion per year on sick pay alone.
While this survey concentrated on the manufacturing sector, many other areas recorded even higher absence rates in the CIPD Annual Absence Management Survey Report 2015.
Days lost per year per employee
|Finance, insurance and real estate||6.1|
|Transport, distribution and storage||6.6|
|Retail and wholesale||11.5|
So what can you do to monitor and reduce absence in your organisation? Do you know how much it costs you and should the Government help?
Making sure you have an absence policy in place and that it is up-to-date is essential. Having a process for dealing with sickness when employees are off, in terms of access to counselling and occupational health, can help you support staff and get them back to work quicker. Keeping accurate records and tracking where issues might occur can often shorten the absence incurred or even prevent it. A healthy workforce is much more productive.
If you need more help with managing staff absence, attendance clinics, occupational health or counselling referrals just give us a call on 01924 827869 or speak to your HR Advisor. Our support at FusionHR can help you remove the stress of staff absence and get staff back to work quicker. Taking a proactive approach can help prevent issues.