Next Monday (3rd February) has been dubbed National Sickie Day, as it’s the day people are most likely to take some unofficial time off, according to employment law expert ELAS.
National Sickie Day could cost businesses £30 million in wages, lost hours and overtime as workers are tempted to take a day off due to the pressures of miserable weather, commuting in the dark, and post-Christmas credit card bills.
In their research, ELAS found some outlandish excuses from employees taking unauthorised time off. One man said he couldn’t make it to work as his only work trousers were wet after his mum washed them, and another employee said she needed the day off as she was trying for a baby.
Pete Mooney, head of consultancy at ELAS, said “More and more bosses have drifted into accepting text messages and emails as confirmation that staff will not be heading into work, making it much easier to get away with a duvet day.”
He continued: “There are steps that businesses can take to mitigate high levels of absence and subsequent financial losses. It’s essential that companies have a clear absence policy in place before ensuring it is implemented properly and that disciplinary steps are taken, should the need arise.”