Skip to main content

Absenteeism and Presenteeism

Everybody knows that absent means not there, but there are many ways of being absent, some while actually present.

When we are implementing time and attendance systems, we regularly find that absence from the workplace has a number of processes already in place, but there are a whole lot of other issues that management wants to get a handle on.

Absenteeism

  • Consistent late arrivals - simply put, if the employee is not on the premises, he is absent.
  • Downing tools early and spending 10 to 15 minutes in the restrooms, getting ready to leave
  • Absence from the workstation to smoke, make tea, have a chat
  • Regular, long bathroom breaks
  • When collecting stationery or tools, taking a lo..o...ong time to do it.
  • Treating sick leave as a target

Presenteeism
  • Extended personal telephone calls 
  • Playing computer games or social networking
  • Dragging out projects and work, not meeting deadlines, but doing just enough to stay under the radar
It is true that presenteeism is also defined as coming to work when ill, and generously spreading the illness, leading to genuine absenteeism!  However, there are people who have conditions which are not enough to get them medically signed off, but not well enough to perform at an optimal level and this is also defined as presenteeism.

I have always preferred to think of it as per the list above, coming to work, being present, but really not adding real value.

Unfortunately, as we all know, the knock on impact of absenteeism in a business is deep.  The time it takes to re-organise resources, manage productivity and client expectations is one aspect, the increased stress on the people who are present, and management is significant.

While there is a great deal of research and advice around how to handle absenteeism, much of which includes a combination of Time and Attendance systems and a structured management approach, there are very clear indications that implementing wellness programs and focusing on improving levels of employee engagement, will have a very positive effect.

Popular posts from this blog

Resignation - keep building relationships

Resignation – avoid burning those bridges It has been a great pleasure working with a colleague like you. Now, you are off to your next big challenge! Good luck and farewell!
Isn’t that what we all want to hear when we leave?  We were appreciated and we will be missed.
The need for all parties to maintain professional conduct in the event of resignation is critical, particularly now when we are working within an unsettled socio-economic climate. Employees should avoid damaging relationships, and employers need to adopt a neutral approach and ensure that there are policies and processes that enable the separation to be objectively handled.  For example: ·A formal resignation letter is required·A formal acceptance of resignation is issued confirming any special conditions·An exit interview takes place·Handovers are planned and executed
Our HR team advise those who resign their position to adhere to a few golden rules. Failure to do so could harm whatever bonds have been formed at the workpla…

Favourite Words

Shambolic – it simply sounds better to me than chaotic.. Do lots of people have favourite words or just a few of us nerds? As everybody is starting to think holidays (or maybe you prefer to vacation), it seemed a good time for a different type of blog. Have you noticed how many words with pleasant associations sound more attractive than those that describe the negative. Watching a TV quiz show the other night made me wonder. The contestant hated bulbous and gusset! There have always been some words that appeal to me, triskaidekaphobia being one. I now know that I had the meaning wrong! I thought it meant fear of Friday the 13th, but it is simply a fear of the number 13, so how does paraskevidekatriaphobia grab you? That is the real word for fear of Friday the 13th. Love it! Now I prefer rural to bucolic, but Robert Beard (see below) selected the latter as one of his favourites. Effervescent is a gorgeous word, so descriptive and onomatopoeic while ethereal makes me think of gossamer and fairie…

What I learned from the snake queue...

The lesson of the snake queue
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it or Leave well enough alone.  But do we?  Oh no, we are always trying to improve on things, no matter how well they work.
Progress does come from constant improvement, but it needs to be an improvement!
Hence the lesson of the snake queue… I know that life isn’t always fair, I also don’t believe that everything happens for a reason (see below). However, the advent of the snake queue made me feel so happy.  I knew that, once I was in it, I would get served next.  I didn’t have to decide which shopping trolleys in front of me had more items, and pick a line accordingly, I simply joined at the rear and waited my turn. Those stores who have duplicate snakes facing each other do add a small element of stress in terms of which one to select, but I cope quite well with this one if I have my Kindle…. The same at airports, pharmacies and banks, such a fair system. Then, a colleague and I went to the USA and arrived at Washington Airport with…