Workforce Management News: New UK Report Highlights Hidden Threats to Staff Wellness
Latest CIPD Survey Results Show Lowest Ever Absence Levels, but Presenteeism and Leavism Rising Unchecked
The Health and Well-Being at Work 2019 Report from the CIPD (Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development) shows that although traditional absenteeism is in decline, workforce issues still exist through less visible problems such as presenteeism and leavism, indicating a workforce still not reaching its potential.
The survey includes results from 1,078 organisations across the UK, referring to 3.2 million employees, and records an all-time-low absence level. This equates to 5.9 days per employee per year, or 2.6% working time lost. However, as the report goes on to highlight, this statistic doesn’t paint a complete picture of the workplace where other negative workforce issues are spreading.
Presenteeism is nothing new (describing the situation where staff are physically present but not working to their full productivity), but it’s still prevalent in the workplace, with 83% surveyed noticing it over the year. Whilst a quarter report this practice is on the rise, only 32% are actually taking steps to discourage it, and of those, just 30% are actually investigating its causes. The most commonly stated action to rectify presenteeism is managers sending home sick employees. However, this is somewhat impacted by only 37% of leaders setting a role-model for employees by not working when ill themselves.
Almost two thirds have observed ‘leavism’, employees either working extra hours or during annual leave to meet workload, or using holiday entitlement to recover when they are ill. Of those who have experienced it, only 28% are taking any steps to discourage it. Of that 28%, just over half are investigating potential causes, but the most popular step to alleviate the issue is offering employees better guidance.
This is a further sign that absence levels alone can no longer be an indicator of workforce productivity or wellbeing; the idea of every desk being staffed signalling peak efficiency must be relegated to the past. Organisations must find new methods of monitoring both presenteeism and leavism, and investigate their causes. The report concludes that staff wellbeing and productivity are intrinsically linked, and resolving these issues to provide a healthier workforce can only benefit both employee and employer.
Our Workforce Management Systems can provide you with statistical data to help detect such issues. Our Job Costing Software Module can provide an analysis of productivity levels, potentially revealing instances of presenteeism. When it comes to leavism, our Time & Attendance Systems can provide alerts for when members of staff are working additional hours, with your own customisable trigger thresholds.
If you would like more information on how our Workforce Management Systems can help you with productivity issues within your organisation, or a free demonstration, please contact us.