A good absence policy sets out acceptable levels of absence and guides managers to review absence patterns early on. It should also provide a clear guide for follow-up actions. When more serious consequences should follow from a poor attendance record. Quite often the first meeting or referral is not the end of the story. The condition may cause another absence further down the line. There may also be follow-up actions like workplace adjustments and risk assessments to complete as a result of the initial review. Managers should review regularly if the measures are working and check in with how the employee is doing, especially if they have a further absence from work.
The most common mistake we see in absence policies is unnecessary complexity. Honeydew’s mission is to make good absence management easy. In this article, we’ll go through the do’s and don’ts of writing absence policies. We will explain how to write a policy that is an effective tool for line managers.
You might think, as many do, that Return to Work (RTW) interviews are only necessary when an employee has been off work due to a serious illness or injury or for a long time. In fact, the opposite is true. Continue reading
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 with her health but the GP simply keeps signing her off work to rest. And that is just fine with Annie – sick pay is part of her contract, after all! Continue reading
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 explains the best practice for addressing absences that you think may not be genuine.
The autumn is upon us and so is the start of the flu season. To combat the illness, every year a flu vaccine is put together to fight the current known strains of flu. In the UK, the flu jab is only offered free of charge to people in known risk groups but individuals can buy a shot in a pharmacy. Many employers also choose to offer the vaccine at work to help their staff stay healthy through the winter. If you’re unsure whether it is safe to have a flu jab or not, read on for more information. Continue reading
Rio Summer Olympics 2016 are fast approaching. The games officially start on 5th August and the closing ceremony takes place in the very early hours of Monday 22nd August UK time. As with any major sporting event, the likelihood that employees will want to catch some of the action is high. Due to the time difference, all the events take place in the afternoon or evening. This means that skiving off during office hours is less likely, although some bleary-eyed employees might be spotted especially after the opening and closing ceremonies that both finish around 2am GMT.
Whilst absence triggers can be highly effective in cutting your absence levels, the way you set them is critical to their success. Understand how your absence policy works in real life when employees start to take advantage of loopholes. Continue reading
Return to Work (RTW) interviews have proven to be an effective absence management tool. Many companies have already incorporated the practce of conducting RTW Interviews into their absence management policies. However, many managers still struggle to undertake effective interviews – or even to find the time to carry them out at all. Continue reading
Buffalo Skiver is one of the Usual Suspects of poor attendance. He is the one who leaves early on a Friday and takes Mondays off to recover from a busy weekend. He will stretch his lunch break an extra half an hour whenever he can and slip off early when no-one is looking. Continue reading