Absenteeism is an issue for businesses across the globe, but punishing those guilty of missing days of work is not the way to tackle the issue.
Instead, managers should consider encouraging good attendance in order to reward their most committed and motivated members of staff.
Scrap the old-school approach
Many managers have the old-school belief that staff are paid to work and should be expected to have strong attendance, but this approach is now outdated.
In fact, the most effective absence policies tend to punish absenteeism while praising presenteeism.
Bosses should consider introducing:
• Cash rewards – a bonus for exceptional levels of presenteeism could incentivise those who are struggling with motivation.
• Flexible working – providing flexible working options to those who have strong attendance over a long period of time.
• Vouchers – introducing vouchers to those with 100% attendance for a year could send the right message to other members of the team.
Be considerate, sensitive and caring
Although good attendance should be encouraged, we're only human and there are many justifiable reasons for missing a day of work.
Senior members of staff should not place too much importance on presenteeism. After all, it's the contributions individuals make in the office that count. If employees have 100 per cent attendance and spend half of their day on Candy Crush, they should not be awarded.
On the other hand, managers should see fit when to step in and order their staff to rest, as figures suggest many people are attending work while ill.
Office for National Statistics figures show that over a third of people would rather use annual leave to recover in order to ensure they did not accumulate sick days.
Over a third of respondents claimed they had no one to turn to when they were ill and are unaware of employer support around sickness absence.
Use e-days to build morale
Being called into the manager's office for a discussion about absence can be a daunting experience but, with e-days, staff can work together to find the root of the problem and tackle it.
Using the e-days staff holiday planner, companies can pinpoint the exact days of absence and discuss the reasons behind the time off, allowing employees to start over and increase their morale.
Along with improving levels of attendance, this can help to develop a lasting bond between staff and their manager, potentially laying the foundations for a loyal relationship.