It is estimated that unauthorised absence costs the UK economy around £10bn-£12bn every year with employees failing to come to work for no good reason an average of 8 days each. With the Olympics just a few short weeks away, and an expected rise is unauthorised absence predicted it important that you plan ahead to avoid unauthorised absence.
To stay on top of unauthorised absence you must put in place thorough absence policy that includes how absence will be managed; states clearly what absence is and is not permitted; details of how absence will be recorded and monitored; reporting lines and disciplinary procedures.
When you suspect an employee is taking an unauthorised day off you should:
- Make contact on day 1 to establish the reason for the absence
- If you are not satisfied that the reason for absence is genuine follow up with a letter on day 2
- If the employee does not make contact and remains absent from work without notice you may have cause to assume resignation and formalise the appropriate procedures
- If the employee returns to work you should always conduct further investigation in order to prevent a similar absence from occurring in the future and where necessary invoke a formal disciplinary process
- If an employee takes annual leave despite being previously refused you must contact them immediately in writing and again invoke a formal disciplinary process.
Having in place a robust absence management policy will reap long term rewards by: –
- Identifying the causes of poor attendance.
- Providing support.
- Increasing loyalty and motivation.
- Deterring casual absence.
- Identifying problems at work.
- Improving morale and motivation.
- Leading to reduction in absence.
- Improving productivity.