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Simple ways to lower sick days


Is your staff taking sick days starting to impact your business? 141.4 million sick days were taken in 2018 (source: Office for National Statistics). That’s 7% more than in 2018. If your business is also experiencing a rise in sick days, here are a few ideas that will help you tackle the issue.

Allow employees to work from home
The most common cause for taking a sick day is a minor illness such as a cough and cold. They’re responsible for 27.2% of days lost. If you’ve got an employee with a cough or a cold, they might not take a sick day straight away. But if they come into the office, other employees are likely to catch their virus. This means they are then more likely to take sick days. By allowing your employees to work from home once in a while, you’ll keep the cold virus out of the office, which is best for everyone. Employees might also feel too ill to come into the office, but would be quite happy to work from home, wrapped in a blanket on the couch.

Reduce their stress level
The 4th most common cause for sickness absence is a mental health condition, including stress, anxiety and depression. This causes 12.4% of sickness absences. Start by finding out how stressed your employees are. Not all employees will be comfortable sharing their stress levels so you might want to try a quick anonymous survey. It’s a good idea to ask about stress levels, cause for stress and ideas on what could help. Once you know where you stand, you can address the problem head on. We’ve got a few suggestions on how to help your employees reduce their stress level on the blog here, including a 5-minute tip that works a treat. We also offer short training courses for employees to build skills like resilience and assertiveness, which are proven to help reduce stress.

Caring for your employees’ health is a no brainer. It will help increase their performance in two ways. Showing them that you care will increase their motivation, and reducing sick days will mean they are getting more done. Let’s get to it and get that national average down for 2020!