Do you need a sickness absence policy?
Here are just a few of the reasons you might need a policy to deal with sickness absence
- To tell staff what you expect of them (i.e. regular and punctual attendance)
- To tell staff that you will support them if there are genuine reasons for their absence
- To remind employees that unexplained absence is not acceptable
- To tell them that you are monitoring their sickness absence and keeping records (this may be sufficient to deter a member of staff from taking a sickie!)
- To explain that you will keep their sickness records confidential
- To allow you to manage sickness absence and to proactively deal with any issues that may arise with an individual’s sickness record
- To help you to spot patterns in an employee’s sickness record – you may have an employee who takes every Friday off (to get ready for the weekend) and every Monday off (to recover from the weekend)
- To explain to managers how to support an employee who is off sick
- To explain an employee’s rights to Statutory Sick Pay (SSP)
- To explain your company sick pay scheme (if you have one in addition to SSP)
What does a simple sickness absence policy cover?
A sickness absence policy doesn’t need to be complicated but it does need to include the following points:
- Clear absence notification procedures – tell staff how you expect them to notify you (usually by telephone) and by what time, giving a clear time limit
- Contact during sickness absence – tell them how often they need to phone in with updates
- Details of the information your employees need to provide in order to support their absence
- Information about fit notes and how they work
- Information about return to work interviews
- Confirmation that you may need to consult the employee's doctor or to ask the employee to attend an independent medical examination
- Rules about payment during absence, including an explanation of Statutory Sick Pay (SSP)
- Confirmation that failure to follow the procedures could result in loss of sick pay and disciplinary action
To get a simple sickness absence policy for your business, contact us.