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Managing absenteeism 2019

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Training for supervisors at Williams College on how to manage absenteeism.

Published in: Leadership & Management
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Managing absenteeism 2019

  1. 1. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 dg3@Williams.edu | ext 3129 Director of Human Resources Danielle Gonzalez Managing Absenteeism
  2. 2. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 1. Importance of dealing with chronic or excessive absenteeism 2. Step by step strategy 3. When and how to refer employees to other resources 4. Case studies 5. Dos and Don’ts Agenda
  3. 3. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 • Direct and indirect costs • Lost productivity Employee’s work Other employees being pulled away from other duties • Impact on morale On workers with strong work ethics and good attendance Impacts of Absenteeism
  4. 4. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 • Sorry, there’s no magic number! • However, if they are using sick days as fast as they earn them, or they have many years of service and have no time available… you might have a problem. How many absences are too many?
  5. 5. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 • How many times has the employee been out in the last month? In the last year? Is this new behavior? • Are there patterns? Extending their weekend? Absent the day after their weekly bowling league? • What have been the impacts of the employee’s absences? Increased workload to others? Increase temp hiring? • Are you holding all of your staff to the same standards? Do your research
  6. 6. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 • Schedule a private conversation • Factually describe the number of absences and the impact on the work and on coworkers • Ask an open-ended question: “What’s going on?” “Is everything okay?” • Remind them that EAP provides a range of services Initial Conversation
  7. 7. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 Informal Feedback • Emphasize importance of improving attendance and the impact on others • Consider creating a goal for measurable improvement i.e. “no more than 1 unscheduled absence per quarter” • Set a follow up meeting to check in on progress • Keep notes about your conversation
  8. 8. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 • Whether it be their own or a family member’s, time may be protected under the Family Medical Leave Act. • Absences covered by FMLA can not be considered when discussing absenteeism or performance conversations. • Managers or employees can contact HR for info on applying for FMLA. • Make notes on the conversation, follow up with an email to the employee summarizing aspects of the conversation. • Follow up to ensure FMLA is requested and approved. If Your Employee Mentions Illness
  9. 9. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 • Don’t accept medical documentation from employee, employee should give directly to HR • Don’t ask questions about employee’s medical condition • If FMLA is approved, be sure you know which absences are covered by FMLA and which ones are not. FMLA
  10. 10. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 • Refer employee to the Employee Assistance Program • Managers can also contact the e4health Management Consulting and Support (MCS) line to discuss workplace challenges. 877-267-1585 | 24/7, 1:1 If Employee Mentions Other Personal Problems
  11. 11. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 • Presentism is showing up to work overly fatigued or otherwise not operating at normal levels of productivity. • The impact can be the same as absenteeism. • Check in and ask if they are okay. “You don’t seem yourself lately...” • Remind them about appropriate leave benefits. • Reinforce the importance of wellness and self care before complete burn out. Presentism
  12. 12. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 • Establish clear goals • Emphasize proactive communication • Monitor work volume and quality • Create agreed upon deadlines, hold employee accountable • Follow through Managing the Performance Aspect of Absenteeism
  13. 13. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 • Acknowledge improvement, show appreciation • If there’s not: Draft a written warning and ask HR to review Written warning should include:  history so far,  measurable expected progress  date for follow up  consequences for not improving Explain you haven’t seen progress and give employee the written warning Follow Up Meeting
  14. 14. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 If no progress after first written warning: • Draft a final written warning • Have it reviewed by HR • Meet with employee to review lack of progress • Give final written warning to employee Final Written Warning
  15. 15. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 If no progress after final written warning, consult with HR for advice on termination procedures. Discharge
  16. 16. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 What would you do? Quick Case Study
  17. 17. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 • Administrative assistant since 2008 • Has had a perfect attendance record until recently • Called out a couple of times this past fall, and four times since the beginning of the year • Sick days are on different days of the week, no pattern • Her energy has been low, often takes naps in her car during her break • Given her years of service, she has ample sick time available Violet Parr
  18. 18. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 • Assistant director, office for student life, hired in 2015 • Has called out five times in the past eight months, always on Fridays • It is common knowledge that Miguel is in a band • Many of his coworkers follow his band on social media and have pointed out he calls out sick when his band has an out of town gig • Miguel seems to get most of his work done in a timely fashion, with the exception that his colleagues have had to cover multiple Friday night events that would normally be his responsibility Miguel Rivera
  19. 19. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 • Cook at Mission Park since 1998 • Bob has FMLA in place for his daughter Tina • FMLA covers one absence per month to take her to doctor’s appointments • Bob missed a total 3 days in December, two days in January, and called out twice in February • Bob regularly picks up additional shifts on his days off which are paid at time and half Bob Belcher
  20. 20. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 • Preschool Teacher since 2016 • Roberta started out as a stellar employee, she brought great creativity and enthusiasm to the classroom • Last summer, her demeanor changed and she has become more negative towards her coworkers • On Jan 4th she went home sick at 9am, then called in Jan 5th & 6th • Her supervisor spoke to her on Jan 9th, she said everything was fine, she just had a stomach bug • Roberta proceed to call out Jan 28th and went home earlier on the 29th • She has been offer FMLA and EAP Roberta Tubbs
  21. 21. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 Managing Absenteeism Process Overview Research Conversation Mentions Illness? Offer FMLA FMLA Approved Track FMLA covered absences Mentions Personal Problems? Refer to EAP Set expectations and time to check on progress Progress? Show appreciation 1st Written Warning 2nd Written Warning Progress? Progress? Termination Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No No No No
  22. 22. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 Do’s and Don’ts Do Don’t Check in when you see early signs Ignore the signs and patterns Give praise to employees with great attendance Give feedback publically to employees on attendance Treat employees equitably with regard to attendance Single out employees for feedback on attendance Have the informal feedback discussion promptly Wait for the performance review to give feedback Maintain confidentiality about any medical information shared with you Accept medical documentation directly from employees Manage performance and attendance Let others think its okay to have excessive absences Refer employees liberally to HR, EAP, OIDE Don’t feel alone in managing these issues
  23. 23. Managing Absenteeism Danielle Gonzalez, Director· Office of Human Resources · dg3@williams.edu · x 3129 • Each employee and their situation is unique • Consult with other managers in your area to see how they have handled similar cases • Contact HR or the e4health Management Consultation and Support Line for advice (877)267-1584 One Size Does Not Fit All

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