Reviewed by Sep 30, 2020| Updated on
Absenteeism is a regular practice of absence from a duty or responsibility but for not a good purpose. The absenteeism is usually unplanned absences. Absenteeism was seen as an indication of poor individual performance and as a breach of an implied bond between employee and employer. This is seen as a question of management and is framed in economic or quasi-economic terms. More recent scholarship attempts to see absenteeism as an indication of occupational psychological, medical, or social change.
High workplace absenteeism can be indicative of low morale, but workplace hazards or sick building syndrome may also cause absences. Measures, such as the Bradford Factor, are a measuring tool for assessing absenteeism. It demonstrates that short, unplanned absences have more impact on the working group than long-term absences. The measure does not differentiate between absence for legitimate reasons of illness and absence for reasons related to non-illness.
Methods of measurement are not reliable and all-encompassing resulting in distorted tests, depending on the variables found. As a result, workers may feel obligated to come to work when they are sick and spread communicable diseases to their colleagues. This leads to even higher absenteeism among other workers and a decrease in productivity.
Absenteeism is a common phenomenon associated with emotional thinking about work and personal stuff. However, attempts are being made to find ways to mitigate the cause. Kelley et al. (2016) state that stress accounts for twelve per cent of the workplace absenteeism a year, which is a situation in which the employer has to remain in contact with the employee and work towards a solution.
A great example of finding progress is forming an employee assistance program (EAP). This is a strategy to help workers deal with issues outside of work that employees bring to the workplace. The program looks to solve not only stress but also other mental health factors that staff find deserving of consideration.