Employee absenteeism refers to the absence of employees from their regular work when they are typically scheduled to work.
It is not easy to show up for work every day. The companies recognize this fact, and in case of emergencies and health issues, they have leave policies for employees. But when those off days are frequent, it becomes a problem and is absenteeism.
The absence of employees is a serious concern. Employees who take large leaves and arrive late at work often add up to a high rate of absenteeism. Such conduct leads to a loss of productivity and low morale of employees. Yet companies fail to address this killer at the bottom of the track.
Here in this article, we'd cover how effective management and encouraging good health in the workplace can reduce employee absenteeism.
The Impact Of Transformational Leadership In Employee Absenteeism
Each organization has its way of doing things. It is on management how an organization runs and how its internal and external processes help the organization and grow and handle the immediate crisis. One such crisis is high employee absenteeism.
British researchers found that transformational leaders and managers, who put time and effort into knowing the employees at a personal level, are well equipped in handling employee absenteeism. Transformational managers are supportive, show an impeccable work ethic and behavior that sets an example for the employees to follow them.
When you know or try to know your employees, it builds good rapport and transparency. This practice gives them space to talk and understand the employees on their absences directly. And what measures should be adapted to cut the absenteeism rate down?
You definitely cannot ask or implement policies on absenteeism and work ethics when you do not follow the rules. Transformational managers have a goal to transform the culture and build a workspace where every member can thrive together. That is why the solution to employee absenteeism often lies in Employee Engagement and Employee Morale. Let's get to know how?
Employees who are disengaged frequently find ways to miss their work. Because they don't enjoy the work they do, or they don't feel appreciated, showing up becomes difficult for them. The fact that job satisfaction is essential for workers to succeed and remain engaged is purely psychological. Practicing, hearing, and strategizing a culture of transparency with employees is a great way to reduce absenteeism.
Give your employees the freedom to be able to decide themselves. Do not micromanage them. Motivate them to work harder and show them how their efforts add value to the company. Give them a sense of belonging, and you would have a team that is productive and engaged.
Related article: Employee Engagement: The Basics and Benefits
Through their job and work environment, workers seek satisfaction. It triggers them to take more absences when the morale of employees is low. Employee morale can now decline for a variety of reasons, but negative work culture is the most prevalent cause. A culture of work where team members don't get along or respect each other with time is unproductive and unhealthy.
Team building activities or team lunches can be arranged by managers to allow team members to gel together and create a good relationship.
Encourage Good Physical And Mental Health Of The Employees
Depression is the leading cause of absenteeism in the United States, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. Workloads, competitive culture of work, tight schedules of work can put a lot of pressure and depress employees.
Such factors not only psychologically affect the workers but also physically fatigue them, which eventually affects their productivity.
Also, corporate sedentary lifestyle and lack of physical activity weakens their health, leading to more sick days and then high absenteeism.
Effective measures to tackle this issue is in implementing the right strategies. The above problems can be addressed by providing flexible work schedules and implementing a wellness program.
Flexible work schedules
Flexible scheduling of work diminishes absenteeism as it allows workers to prepare their work accordingly. Employees have a different internal clock as well as out-of-work responsibilities. For some, the day starts late and early for some. Some like to leave early, and others want more balance between work and life.
Therefore, given the variety of needs, flex timing can have a positive impact on the workplace and absenteeism.
For everyone, the number of hours remains the same. Management that stresses getting the work done after specific scheduling of work has less absenteeism and more dedication.
Implementing a wellness program
Providing a wellness program to the employees is a great way to improve the health of the employees, promote camaraderie in the workplace, reduce tensions in the workplace, and absenteeism.
A wellness program is an organized and coordinated program that aims to enhance the physical, emotional, and mental health of a person.
The activities in the employee wellness programs such as weight-loss competitions, exercise, stress management or resiliency education, and smoking cessation programs can help employees to adapt to a healthy lifestyle and stay fit.
When employees are happy and healthy, they don't call in sick leaves, reduces absenteeism, and are engaged and productive. This is the reason why employers sponsor employee wellness programs to build a healthy work culture that thrives.
Wrapping it up
Absenteeism is a costly affair and a bottom-line killer. Therefore, when management tries to implement new policies for absenteeism, they must understand the work culture and the employees well. Often inefficiency of the management increases the absenteeism rate.
We hope the article helps you gather some perspective on that and help you become more mindful and make the right decisions.
Related article: The HR Professionals Guide to Tackle Employee Absenteeism