Impact of absenteeism

Impact of absenteeism

A study conducted by Attentia between 2017 and 2023 among approximately 120,000 workers spread across 225 employers revealed that in 2023, total absences due to illness accounted for nearly 10% of the total working time of these workers. This significant increase is primarily attributed to medium and long-term absenteeism, which reached record levels. Several factors explain this trend, and measures can be taken by employers to address it.

The aging population is a major cause of long-term absenteeism, as workers must stay longer in the workforce due to increased retirement age and restrictions on early retirement. Additionally, increasing workload can lead to excessive pressure, driving some workers to be absent for extended periods. The culture of constant accessibility also contributes to blurring the boundaries between private life and work, which can increase stress and burnout.

One-fourth of long-term sick leave cases are related to burnout, reflecting a growing awareness of mental health among workers. The study also reveals that medium-term absenteeism is higher among workers aged 50 to 59 and more frequent among laborers than among employees, due to the physically demanding nature of labor jobs.

Regarding short-term absences, they did not increase in 2023 following a new rule abolishing the requirement for a medical certificate for a single day of illness. However, the number of workers sick for just one day has increased.

The impact of absenteeism is significant, affecting not only the worker but also their colleagues and the organization as a whole. Clients may also be dissatisfied if their usual contacts are absent or if delivery times are affected.

To prevent long-term absenteeism, companies must implement clear and effective prevention policies, focusing on communication and support for workers. It is essential to maintain regular contact with sick workers to facilitate their reintegration and avoid isolation. Open communication before issues become critical can help identify risks and intervene in a timely manner.

Lastly, companies must also be prepared to take punitive measures to combat unjustified absenteeism, using tools such as the Bradford Factor to identify trends and engage in constructive discussions with affected workers.

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