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Memo Workplace Illness Absence

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Memo Workplace Illness Absence

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  • November 2012
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BCOM 3950

Date:October 23, 2011



RE:How to handle workplace illness/absences

As you know, we have all been assigned a topic on an effective business behavior to research and do a presentation on. This is to further address the topic that was presented to you on how to handle workplace illness and absences. In my experience as a small business owner, employees missing work, for whatever reason, tended to be a costly headache. Being absent from work, even in the event of an illness, can be a big deal in most company cultures both large and small. There are many reasons why employees miss work, such as pregnancy, illness, death in family, etc. These reasons can be classified as pre-arranged or authorized absences such as pregnancy a call to jury-duty, and un-authorized absences, such as an unscheduled call-in. It is the employer’s responsibility to handle employee absences sensitively, but with the company’s best interest in mind.

Reasons for Being Absent
In her book, Diana Summers points out that most employees have or will be absent for work at some point in time for a reason other than the one they initially give. There are many reasons for doing so. Most reasons are beyond the employee’s control. The most used reason for missing work is that the employee has an illness of some sort, or an employee’s child has an illness. A death in the family is another reason beyond one’s control, and must be handled carefully. There are also pre-arranged reasons such as pregnancy or active-duty leave. The not-so-smart, or “fake” reasons, which surely you have all heard of or may have used yourself, are at the top of reasons for an employee to be absent for work. All of these reasons cost employer’s time and money. Two-thirds of employees in the US who call in sick to work at the last minute, are actually not truly sick, but are calling in for personal reasons. Most employees use their paid sick days...

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