A recent review of councils in Northern Ireland revealed a worrying trend around growing numbers of staff absenteeism. The assessment found that sickness absence rates among council staff are at their highest since 1990.
According to the local government auditor for Northern Ireland, an average of 15 days was lost per employee during 2017-18; the majority of which was due to longer-term conditions, such as severe depression, musculoskeletal problems and stress.
But it’s not just Northern Ireland experiencing an absence crisis; staff sickness rates at the City of York Council have risen even further – after it was revealed that 23,000 working days were lost to absence in 2018. The same is true for council staff in Wrexham, where a jaw-dropping 50,000 sick days were reported last year!
These revelations prompt the questions, “Why and how can we manage this?”
Mental health clearly plays a huge influence and is an ever-growing, ongoing issue; which, as reported in our last article, organisations are desperately trying to tackle through a variety of innovations, including implementing shorter working weeks, wellbeing hours and encouraging staff to exercise more.
These trends and insights can only come about by monitoring absence and absence management systems that enable this have proven to be an invaluable investment for all types of organisations and businesses. Simple features, like downloadable reports, allow senior staff members to keep track of staff absences, monitor causes and develop strategies and policies to combat the issues.
Keen to be able to monitor staff absence in your organisation? Start your free 30-day LeavePlanner trial today.