Absenteeism can be intentional on the part of the employee, especially if the workplace is too stressful or if they want to avoid difficult coworkers or bosses. Some employees may also have personal problems or obligations outside work (such as caring for a child or an elderly family member), which compel them to take a leave.
However, in some cases, habitual absence from work is not necessarily deliberate. Some workers may be nursing injuries that have recurring effects (like back pain). Some employees may also neglect their general health, which makes them easy to catch bugs. Other times, there may be a dramatic spike in absenteeism when there is an outbreak of the flu, a viral illness, or some other contagious disease in the workplace.
Possible Effects of Workplace Absenteeism
According to a Forbes article, workplace absenteeism can cost a company as much as “$3,600 per year for each hourly worker and $2,650 each year for salaried employees. The costs can be attributed to many factors including:
- Wages paid to absent employees
- High-cost replacement workers (overtime pay for other employees and/or temporary workers)
- Administrative costs of managing absenteeism”
The article further cited that the problem can result in inefficient services, poor quality of goods produced, and safety issues because of worker fatigue and understaffing (since some employees would have to cover for the coworkers with unscheduled absences.)
Solutions to Reduce Employee Absenteeism
For some managers or company owners, incentive programs help in encouraging employees to come to work. Some may reward perfect attendance with bonuses. Some would also offer simple perks at work and hold events like lotteries, especially during holidays and other special dates for the company.
On the other hand, there are firms who see the benefits of a worksite clinic. This proactive approach to the health of individual employees can work in the following ways:
- Each worker’s physical and psychological health can be assessed periodically.
- Any health concern can be addressed right away.
- The onsite nurse can do initial assessments if an employee suddenly feels sick at work and recommend preventive measures, so the problem doesn’t escalate.
- A doctor can prescribe and dispense medications to manageable conditions, as needed.
- Some companies can have rehabilitation services provided in the worksite clinic.
These can help reduce the occurrence or spread of illnesses. Employees won’t need to take a whole days off for an appointment with a doctor or a therapist, either. Ultimately, there will be a reduction in employee absenteeism, and the change can even improve the morale and productivity of the workforce (i.e. you can have healthier, happier, more motivated workers)
The bottom line is that an onsite clinic can be good for business, but you need to get the services of a reputable company, such as U.S. HealthWorks. With an expert partner, you can tailor the worksite clinic based on your company’s needs and goals, provide efficient medical care to your staff, and contain the costs of employee absenteeism.
The Causes And Costs Of Absenteeism In The Workplace, Forbes
Onsite Health Clinics Improve Employee Health, Reduce Absenteeism, Horton
Large employers look to on-site health clinics to reduce costs and absenteeism, The Washington Post