The Leading News & Information Service For The Facilities, Workplace & Built Environment Community

Hi Ho, Hi Ho - It's Off To Home You Go - Send Sneezy Packing

Presenteeism
10 August 2018
 

Over 8 in 10 employees admit observing presenteeism in the workplace according to a Chartered Institute of Professional Development survey, when those that are ill should be encouraged to stay home and recuperate.

The number of lost working days due to absence has fallen to a record low number according to recent figures by ONS who had revealed UK workers have taken an average number of just 4.1 sick days in 2017, compared with 7.2 days in 1993.

The CIPD survey (conducted earlier this year) shows people who are coming into work when they are ill also known as ‘presenteeism’ has more than tripled since 2010, with 86% of employees admitting they had observed presenteeism in the workplace.

Research by the Centre of Mental Health shows presenteeism from mental health alone is estimated to cost the UK economy £15.1 billion per annum, compared to £8.4 billion per annum for absenteeism.

Following the findings, Ciara Morrison, Head of HR and Talent at Instant Offices has provided an insight into why more employees are committing presenteeism year on year.

 

Job security and labour policies are factors

The phenomenon itself is not new. Nonetheless, it has recently become the subject of interest in studies. According to Dr. Cary Cooper of Manchester University, who first used the term, it results from job insecurity brought on by the downsizing and restructuring in the 1990s. When employees believe they are at risk of losing their jobs, they feel an urgency to put in more hours, or at least appear to be working longer.

 

The cost of presenteeism

The Centre for Mental Health has stated that presenteeism from mental ill health alone costs the UK economy £15.1 billion per annum. They argue that the consensus reached in research is that the cost of presenteeism is larger than that of sickness absence. 

In the early stages mental illness, health problems often manifest themselves predominantly in the form of increased presenteeism. This then acts as a strong predictor of future sickness absence. The more presenteeism today will result in more absenteeism tomorrow. This form of loss in productivity is more likely to occur among white-collar workers, particularly professional and executive staff, rather than blue-collar workers.

Naturally, with more interest in the phenomenon by researchers, there are a range of solutions that have been suggested to overcome presenteeism. The best way to address presenteeism is to implement an effective health management strategy that engages employees and supports them in improving their well-being.

 

Management should go the extra mile

Management policy affects work culture, so it should be used to affect presenteeism. Policies that are put in place to address abuse of sick days can unknowingly encourage presenteeism. So, organisations need to make it clear where they stand on the matter. This can be accomplished by insisting on sending people home to fully recuperate or encouraging flexible work solutions in times of illness or personal trauma.

Picture: Don't come in you walking epidemic -  just one way to discourage presenteeism.

To find Instant Offices - Click Here

Article written by Ciara Morrison | Published 10 August 2018

Share



Related Articles

Statutory Sick Pay Needs Urgent Reform, Says CIPD

The Statutory Sick Pay system is broken and needs urgent reform, the CIPD, the professional body for HR and people development, is warning.   The call to...

 Read Full Article
Wellbeing and Mental Health Drops Down Business Agenda

Despite wellbeing remaining an ongoing concern for workers, CIPD research suggests that mental health is beginning to slip down the business agenda amongst...

 Read Full Article
The Right to Disconnect at Work – Is it A Legal Matter?

A European Parliament majority has voted for a law that grants workers the right to digitally disconnect from work without facing negative repercussions. MEPs are...

 Read Full Article
Home Working Highlights Culture of Presenteeism, says CIPD

77 per cent of employers have observed presenteeism in employees who are working from home in the last year, according to research by The Chartered...

 Read Full Article
Guidance To Help Tackle One-Sided Flexibility

Hot on the heels of a new government consultation to improve the rights of variable hours workers, the CIPD has launched employer guidance to help ensure such atypical...

 Read Full Article
Facing Up To Biometric Challenge

Innovise Software and FaceID Biometrics have joined forces to add face recognition technology to Innovise’s biometric portfolio. Face recognition technology...

 Read Full Article
World Day for Safety and Health at Work – The Cost of Construction Injuries

Research analysis demonstrates the impact of accidents in the construction industry and how workers and workplaces are being affected. This World Day for Safety and...

 Read Full Article
Why 2022 Could be the Year of Record Pay Rises

The Governor of the Bank of England recently said that we need to see “a moderation of wage rises” to stop rising inflation. However, employers in the UK...

 Read Full Article
It’s Now Illegal in Portugal for Your Boss To Text You After Work

We all have the right to disconnect from work – but the Portuguese government has gone a step further in ensuring this. Portugal's Socialist Party has...

 Read Full Article
Flexible Working to Become Day One Right Under UK Law

The government has announced plans to make the right to request flexible working a legal right from day one of employment. Every employee will be given the right to...

 Read Full Article