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Do you struggle to record who on your payroll is isolating, shielding, furloughed or recently reported possible Covid-19 symptoms? Are you tired of keeping your teams updated with ever-changing public health advice? Is your company balancing the tightrope between safeguarding staff whilst staying in business? If so, you are definitely not alone. The good news is that a robust absence management system can help make these tasks easier. Below are a few points to illustrate why absence management is essential work in the era of Coronavirus, especially for those employing essential workers.
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Absence is a management issue, not a medical one. That is why similar organisations with similar work profiles can have very different absence levels. The difference is not that the employees in one company are more ill. The difference is that one company is managing absence better than the other one.

Any absence is a cost to the employer, regardless what the line of work or sick pay policies. And if absence is not measured, it can’t be managed. Therefore, it’s always recommended to start recording absence ideally before it becomes a problem. However, if you’re looking for a solution to turn around a culture of poor attendance, it is never too late to start.


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More new features to announce: the new employee form has been updated and simplified. This will be welcome news for any new administrators since the new form is even easier to fill in than before. The changes improve the form’s usability and guide the user to enter the correct details without making mistakes. Click on the image to watch a short tutorial video to see what is new:
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Early intervention has always been our mantra. The sooner an absence is reviewed and the appropriate action taken to put a plan in place for a return to work, the better the outcomes. Short of spotting any warning signs for problem before it escalates to an absence, there’s no better time for early intervention than the first day of absence. We’ve shared some scary stats in the past that should give us enough reason not to be idle while an absence gradually becomes long term, but if you were wondering how to achieve this in practice, Day-1 OH could be the solution you’ve been looking for.
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New feature alert!

Great news for all absence managers, who are keen to dive deeper into their absence data. Engage now offers a fully customisable report option where you can filter the columns before you export the data set, to save time editing the spreadsheet manually.

The Custom Data Table offers all the same fields as the Comprehensive Absence Summary. Select from basic absentee details, like start and end dates, reason and duration as well as 12-month personal absence metrics. The report can also show what policy triggers have been hit and if any management action has been taken to follow up. Additionally, you can now include Employment terms – another new feature – and Cost per absence day in the same report.
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Many businesses across England are resuming operations after almost seven weeks in lockdown, employees are being encouraged to return to work, providing working from home is not possible; whilst employers are now required by law to comply with government sector specific guidelines to ensure the workplace is COVID-19 secure and with the necessary precautionary measures in place.
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If you are fit and healthy, many of you are hopefully still able to work, whether remotely from home or in the workplace if you are an essential worker. However, if you or your family are unwell or have any symptoms associated with Coronavirus, you will need to self-isolate and remain at home for the time currently stipulated by the government at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/self-isolation-advice/. We have created this list of Coronavirus top tips for health in isolation to help you through this.
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Hello 2019! New Year is a good time for a clearout and we’ve done just that in Engage this January. We start this new year by refreshing the look of our reports and by adding a script that automatically deletes old tasks that are more than 3 months overdue.
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Dashboard upgrade

September 20, 2018

Engage interactive absence dashboard has had a major overhaul. We now bring even more data and analytics to our users right on the home screen. Here’s what’s new:
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We recently attended the Health and Wellbeing @Work conference in Birmingham where Senior Researcher from Tilburg University Dr Margot Joosen presented her findings from a study focusing on returning employees to work who were or had been absent with a mental health issue.
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