Absenteeism

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Sample Leave Form

Sample Leave Form

27 Mar 2003

This form is a sample of a leave form which may be used for sick leave, annual leave or any other leave. You can use this as is or edit it to suit your particular needs.

Quick Facts

Minimise Absenteeism

Making the switch from school to work environment can be a big culture shock to some young workers, particularly when you consider that schools have twelve weeks annual leave each year, which is four times that of business. Schools also have looser restrictions on sick time and other leave, so there is some adjusting to do for the young person who has come straight from the school environment.

The following strategies below and those under Motivating Employees, may help you to make the transition smoother and minimise absenteeisms amongst your young staff.

Maintain Job Satisfaction - 'Keep them in the loop'

Dissatisfaction with a job can be a reason why sickies are taken. If a young worker feels they are not valued or needed at work, then they may also feel that there is no harm in taking a sickie.

Boredom is another common reason for absenteeism. You can help to alleviate this by keeping the duties varied - most people need variety in their job; especially young people. Variety can also help to make the job more enjoyable and fun.

The same applies for rosters – vary shifts and allow them to swap if necessary. Keep them aware of the bigger picture and let them know that ‘the customers depend upon us’. If you explain how it causes stress and worry if someone doesn’t show up, how their absence affects other areas of the business and puts pressure on other staff, they may think twice before taking time off unnecessarily.
Make sure that staff know how to cover for one anothers jobs in periods of absence - it makes life a lot easier and keeps customers happier if things flow as usual.

Keep Communication Flowing

Encourage open discussion. Young workers are often shy about talking to the boss and may not feel comfortable asking for a day off. Keep the communication flowing and where possible, try to accomodate their needs as it builds trust and respect.

Plan Ahead

Keep employees informed of busy days or periods, so they can try to avoid taking days off during these times.

Plan your rosters at least a month ahead for Christmas and other holiday periods. This way you can plan ways to cover for those staff that will be on leave.

Sometimes it just happens that staff are genuinely sick at inconvenient times. It's unavoidable, so try to be understanding and don't assume the worst.

Have a Policy on Leave

It’s a good idea to have a policy regarding leave and absenteeism, and remember to run through it at the Induction phase. The policy may include the following points:
  • Does the employee really need to take the whole day off?
  • Could the appointment be scheduled for before or after work hours?
  • Sick leave requirements and whether you require a doctors certificate (first be sure to check your local awards/legislation)
  • Information on when to phone in and to whom the sick employee should speak to. This avoids the worry that the employee has had an accident and allows you to re-organise the day, call in casual help etc.
  • Employees to keep you genuinely informed of their pending return so you can plan the workload
  • Being fair to workmates by not leaving them the extra workload.
  • If practical, include in the policy, the introduction of a rostered day off.

Allow Annual Leave

Be flexible with annual leave. It can help in reducing the amount of sick leave by allowing employees to take some of their annual leave if they need time off for a particular reason.

Complete a Leave Form

Don't lose track of your employee leave records. One approach is to have all employees complete and hand in a Leave Form to cover annual leave, sick leave and any other absenses.
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