A postiit note with Absent written on it

The Cost of Absence

27 Feb
by Suzie Business Owner & Senior HRBP

One of the most important HR metrics to an employer is absence.

Data from a 2018 to 2022 study found that individuals aged 50-64 take the most sick days, averaging 6.1 days per worker annually, while younger workers aged 16-24 take significantly fewer days, averaging 2.7 days per worker. Women report more sick leave than men.

Leading causes of absences include minor illnesses like colds, accounting for 33 million lost workdays annually, and mental health issues, responsible for around 12% of lost working time.

Regional disparities exist, with the North-East reporting the highest absence rate.

Sick days can negatively impact job satisfaction, well-being, and productivity.

Monitoring employee absence levels provides valuable insights.

While it may not directly measure productivity during active hours, it does offer a clear indication of the time employees are dedicating to the business.

A robust HR system should provide tools for tracking absences effectively, such as utilising HR software to monitor employees’ Bradford Factor scores. This allows you to identify and address any concerning patterns of absence promptly.

For more support and guidance, head to our website and the free resources portal How to HR includes in the support section under Absence –  A line Managers guide to Absence (short and long term), plus AWOL 1st contact letter Template, Self Self-Certification Template, Return to Work Meeting template.

If you are looking at HR software, talk to Breathing Space about myHRIS, and please call a member of the Breathing Space team if you need further advice.

Book a free consultation