Is your business overlooking the cost impact of employee absences?

A recent report has found that more than half of the UK’s employers either do not know or do not record the percentage of payroll represented by sickness absence cost per annum.
The report found that only 45 per cent of those polled knew how much sickness absence costs their organisation in 2018, although that figure has risen from 39 per cent last year.
Meanwhile, only seven per cent of those who do measure the costs said that sickness absence represents less than one per cent of payroll, while 11 per cent said it equates to five per cent of payroll.
While the proportion of businesses that measure their sickness absence levels has not changed significantly since 2017, falling from 70 per cent to 64 per cent, this decrease appears to be part of an ongoing trend since 2010, when the number was closer to 80 per cent.
The amount of sickness time taken by employees varies too, with 36 per cent of employees taking between three and five days, although this is down from 41 per cent last year. Interestingly, the number of employees taking more than 15 sick days per year has more than halved in a year, from three per cent in 2017 to one per cent in 2018.
The report also points out that around 70 million working days are lost every year due to poor mental health, costing the UK up to £100 billion. It is therefore vital that time and effort is allocated to look after employees’ mental health and to spot the warning signs early.
If you are unsure of the rules surrounding long-term staff illness, please contact our experienced team today.

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