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How Poor Employee Attendance Erodes Profit – and How to Fix It


Poor Employee Attendance

Recent workplace statistics point to a steady rise in cases of absenteeism among employees; this is causing many American companies to lose huge amounts of money every year. According the headhunting firm OnForce, Inc, absenteeism at the workplace doesn’t only affect the workers; its ripple effects can lead to loss of performance and productivity. To counter this growing problem, companies must come up with strategies for improving the work culture and employee morale while acknowledging the problems caused by absenteeism.

Consequences of poor employee attendance

Poor employee attendance cost companies millions of dollars. To add to this reality, studies have shown that 1/3 to 2/3 of all off work, illness excuses are disingenuous. In addition, half of the days taken off by workers are spent attending other matters unrelated to illness. The resulting effect is companies losing money, increase in backlog and the tightening of the loopholes employees use for terminations. Absenteeism can also compromise work quality and lead to an increase in employee turnover in the long-term.


Causes of absenteeism

Causes of absenteeism

There are many reasons advanced by various experts for growing cases of casual absenteeism. The problem became more evident in the early nineties and this can be traced to workplace boredom and low morale. Another school of thought holds that the problem began when employers began issuing voluntary overtime to workers, but this gesture took an opposite turn when employees took it upon them to leave work un-procedurally to attend personal matters.

In return, the guilt of leaving unfinished work pushed employees to look for reprieve elsewhere by abusing the provisions of personal time. The consequence of the excuses then breeds workplace crisis, job burnout, low employee morale and general absence. According to Creative Business Resources website, the top 6 things the management departments can do to prevent the absenteeism include:


Work-Life Balance

1. Ensure proper work-life balance

First thing employers need to do to counter growing cases of absenteeism is create a good work-life balance by not infringing on the employees time and ultimately making sure employees do not abuse the employers time.

2. Improve relationship between employees and supervisor

One of the reasons often cited by workers for leaving their jobs early is a bad relationship between them and their supervisors. The management can solve this problem by encouraging supervisors and employees to participate in group and fun activities such as communal and recreational events to promote social cohesion and mutual understanding.

3. Break up work schedule

Non-compromising and difficult work schedules contribute a lot to rising cases of absenteeism. The management can solve this problem by; breaking the work schedules into small bits; paying more attention to work-life balance and intervening to reduce workplace boredom and strain caused by overbearing activities.

4. Solve the transportation issue

Transportation is always a big concern in the workplace because it can lead to loss of time and money. Since employees come from different places, the management can encourage car-pooling and van commuting to reduce tardiness and absenteeism.

5. Promote healthy workforce

Employers should always strive to have a healthy workforce and work out strategies to regain lost hours. Health issues like smoking should be curtailed to minimize loss of time and prevent future illnesses. Employers can promote healthy living by instituting an exercise studio membership, promoting weight loss contests and sanctioning the selling of fresh fruits in the office.

6. Build a positive work culture

Employers can encourage workers to appreciate and put more effort in their work by building a positive work culture. This can be achieved by promoting freedom, social interaction, friendship and adding periodical breaks.


Overcome absenteeism

How employees can overcome absenteeism

Employees on their part can help solve the problem of poor attendance by:

1. Encouraging positive attitude

Employees need to be positive by cultivating a positive attitude towards work. The management can also come in by helping employees with low morale or those who spend a lot of time commiserating over issues affecting them.

2. Attending time management seminars

Employees trained on the importance of time management often exude a great sense of pride and accomplishment. Time management seminars for workers can also go a long way to reassure the employees that the management cares about them.

3. Placing high value on time

Employees should know and appreciate the true value of time by being punctual at all times. They should also know that attendance and absenteeism can directly affect productivity in the entire workplace.


It is incumbent upon HR departments and HR outsourcing firms to find the reasons causing poor employees attendance in their respective stations and prevent them in order to improve the company’s bottom line. These solutions must include an avenue for employees to address their issues while encouraging prudent time keeping strategies. Employers should also review how the jobs are structured and pay attention to workers entitlements in order to challenge and motivate employees accordingly.



Content courtesy of Neches FCU, an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer.

Neches FCU is one of the top Texas credit unions and has an attentive team of professionals ready to service all members. When their doors open at any of the 9 locations, the core objective of “Ultimate Member Satisfaction” becomes the sole focus for every representative. They are well-respected for a personal, dynamic and enthusiastic work atmosphere, providing a memorable service experience, and where all members are known by name. Neches FCU has approx. $438 Million in assets with over 45,000 members. Neches is acknowledged by members and the business community as one of the top credit unions in Texas and an actively involved partner, helping our Family, Friends and Community!

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