Myth: You need to be 100% fit to return to work

There are two common misconceptions about return to work after illness: 1) that you have to be fully recovered to return and 2) that you cannot return until a medical certificate runs out. Excluding contagious diseases or health and safety reasons barring a return, you don’t have to be 100% fit to return. “The earlier […]

Truth or myth? Work is bad for back problems

Bed rest was first advised as treatment for back problems in the 1720’s and it has been gradually questioned ever since. Whilst it should not be ruled out completely – some back problems, such as sciatica do require a temporary limiting of mobility – it should be restricted to 2 days at the most.

How to handle an employee with an addiction

Substance abuse is contentious issue in the workplace and managers often draw a hard line when it comes to addiction. Whether the problem relates to alcohol or drugs the workplace issues are generally similar, but many wrongly believe that substance abuse amounts as grounds for instant dismissal.

Myth: Contacting absent employees is harrassment

It is commonplace to think that if your employees are off sick, you should not ‘bug’ them with what could feel like ‘intrusive’ phone calls or e-mails. Some even think that it could be classed as harassment to keep in regular contact with a sick employee. This is a myth.

Myth: Employers are bound by suggestions on a fit note

Fit Note was introduced in 2010. Since then, many employers mistakenly think that they are obligated to implement suggestions made by a GP on a fit note. In fact, this is a myth. The Fit Note is intended to issue guidance on how an employee can return to work in the short term before they […]

How to manage a repeat offender like Annie Excuses?

Using every excuse under the sun, Annie is rarely seen at work. One day her back hurts, the next it’s migraines, or her all-time favourite: stress. When she does turn up, it’s with a multitude of explanations for why she hasn’t done the work she was meant to do. Her boss is keen to help […]

How to avoid getting blue while we wait for the longer spring days

Besides from the fun and festivities, many of us associate winter with the blues and low energy. A lack of sunlight, cold weather, slush and widespread winter related diseases all contribute to this and for some it develops into Seasonally Affected Disorder. Nonetheless, just because it is winter it doesn’t have to be the case […]

Myth: Sick pay is the only absence cost

Despite the fact that you may not have to pay the employee when they are off, there are other costs. When an employee is absent direct and indirect costs are incurred to the business. All absence carries direct and indirect costs

How to manage employees who pull sickies?

Managers may often feel that they ‘know’ when employees are faking an absence. The gut feeling may be based on their personal relationship with the employee or the fact that they have noticed patterns of absence e.g. repeatedly taking sick days on a Friday. Relying on instict is not an approach we recommend. This article […]

Managing complex absence triggers easily

Does your organisation have fiendishly complex absence triggers and policies? Do you need to juggle a combination of different terms and conditions for different staff members? Does the policy change based on length of service? Do you want to track pro-rata allowances for part-time employees? If you answered ‘yes’ to any of these questions, Engage […]