Managing sickness absence can be a productivity thief, cost you mega bucks each year, and send your employees’ morale spiralling… that’s why it’s so important to get it right.
It can easily get out of control. Nearly 60% of Americans between 18-30 years are taking at least five sick days a year, which translates to an estimated financial loss of more than $40 billion a year.
And if they don’t take a sick day, they might turn up to work anyway... something that more than half of frontline employees stated to be the case, because they can’t afford to take time off.
Either way isn't ideal when dealing with scheduling. But as a manager, you need to put the focus on what you can control - that is managing sickness absence as smoothly as possible. Follow these 3 steps to simplify the process, and to avoid extreme staff shortages and employee conflict.
Step 1: Make tech your assistant
Throw away your pen and paper, and your guesses! Instead team up with the right tool for managing sickness absence. It’s simpler, more effective and hassle-free. Just think of Harry Potter - without his magic wand, trusty sidekicks and flying broom - there’s no way he could beat Voldemort. Translate that to absence management, and Voldemort would run Hogwarts.
The awesomeness about WFM solutions is they collect country-wide, regional and employer-specific paid and unpaid leave policies.
By digitalizing (the otherwise traditional) leave management process, software makes sure that you get accurate reporting and full visibility when tracking and managing leave of absence.
Step 2: Team up and automate
Managing sickness absence through workforce management software will make it possible to:
- Facilitate real-time communication between managers and employees.
- Check absence balances (and ensure employees are not taking excess time off).
- Forecast future balances for regulations and planned leave usage, AND calculate the accrual of earned time off.
- Reduce the risk of noncompliance with automatic checks against working time directives and employee contracts.
- Ensure that all absences are paid out at the right rates.
Just imagine trying to do all of this in Excel?! 😅 No, let’s not even go there. Instead, say a "thank you" to your WFM tool and the data for helping you make better decisions for now and the future (because yes, you’ll be able to predict the future based on your historical data, and the patterns and trends you’ll explore)!
You can also integrate your tool with other HR systems, which creates even more magic. Quinyx for example, can easily be integrated with HRIS (Human Resource Information Systems) solutions like ADP and Workday. The end game equals flowing communication through API architecture.
Step 3: Maximize your employee experience
“It's much smarter to invest in strategy and tools that reinforce your culture and establish a relationship with your workers. Employee experience is about flexibility and agency over their work, career growth opportunities, communication channels, trust, and the tools your employees need to do their job”, stated Forrester’s Betsy Summers in The WFM Show.
A WFM tool will make your absence management better and easier to deal with…not only for you, but for your frontline workers. As well as sending leave requests directly through a dedicated WFM app, your employees can easily swap shifts with a simple swipe.
By investing in a WFM tool you show them you care and want to improve their employee experience. It won’t prevent them from catching a cold or being sick, but they’re more likely to stay with your organization and create better experiences for your customers.
Let’s sum it up.
Managers will, with the help of absence management solutions, keep productivity high and costs of absence low. Employees will get a better employee experience.