While it is true that a business will not suffer a great deal when an employee takes a day off for one reason or another, regular employee absences can bring confusion and disorder into the business. As most business owners and managers know, preventing every absence in the workplace is not possible; however, with the right strategies, it is still possible to improve workplace attendance.
The first step into improving employee attendance should be to implement an attendance tracking method that can easily and accurately detect employee absences, such as a time management app or a time management clock. This way, it will be easy for management to identify and deal with problematic employee absences before they get out of hand.
Creating an Attendance Law/ Policy
When a business doesn’t have a straightforward attendance law or policy, employees might not understand everything that is expected of them in terms of attendance and might take advantage of this to take unauthorized days off, or to show up whenever they wish. An attendance policy should be clear on what the company considers as an acceptable absence, and the disciplinary action/actions that the employees may face by abusing the policy. Thereafter, every employee in the business or company should be made to sign a copy of the policy for future references.
Improving Employee Morale
When employee morale is low, employees will not be eager to come to work and some will even look for lame excuses to miss work. Boosting employee morale can be done in several ways, such as organizing group lunches, offering prizes to employees who have shown some improvement, allowing them to work from home, and so on.
Reducing Workplace Stress
Having a huge workload is among the various factors that can create workplace stress for an employee. Workplace stress will not only encourage frequent absences; it will eventually cause stress-related illnesses, such as high blood pressure and heart attack. Poor working conditions can also cause frequent absences from work.
Identifying Personal Reasons for Absenteeism
Other than what we have already discussed, some employees might have their personal reasons for neglecting work. Some of the reasons may include the following:
- boredom or lack of interest with work
- alcohol or drug abuse
- family problems
- workplace conflicts
It is always a wise idea to speak with an employee who is always absent from work before taking a disciplinary action against them. As we saw at the beginning of this article, a time management app will make it quite easy for management to identify such an employee. Having a personal talk with an ever absent employee might uncover the root cause of the frequent absences, after which the manager or supervisor can determine the right way to handle the issue.
In most cases, the law allows an employee to be terminated from work if he or she has been continuously absent for 3 months or so without a valid reason. However, employers should always seek legal advice before terminating an employee.