How do you manage employee absences and last-minute unavailability?

Gestion des absences de dernière minute - Shyfter

Managing last-minute absences and unavailabilities can be a real challenge for companies. Prolonged sick leave and unjustified absences impact on productivity and the smooth running of an organization. Employers need to assess the reasons for and frequency of absences, and take steps to limit them by adopting measures to improve their employees’ working conditions. The use of leave and absence management software enables you toanalyze your company’s absenteeism rate and quickly find staff to make up for last-minute unavailability.

What are the main causes of absenteeism in the workplace?

Absenteeism in the workplace refers to the sudden absence of one or more employees for one of the following reasons:

  • Sick leave
  • Unjustified absence
  • Work accident

Absenteeism in the workplace can have several causes:

  • Illness and health problems: health problems, whether physical or psychological, are a major cause of absenteeism in the workplace. Chronic or occasional illnesses or mental health problems can lead employees to take medical leave.
  • Personal problems: unjustified absences can be caused by personal problems (family conflict, death of a close relative, new responsibilities).
  • Working conditions: strained relations with colleagues or superiors, difficult working hours or physically demanding working conditions are all factors contributing to absenteeism.

Analyze absenteeism in your company to find better solutions

To remedy a high absenteeism rate and ensure good absence management, it is necessary to know the causes, frequency and duration of absences. Drawing up a detailed analysis is a good way of identifying the type of absenteeism prevailing within your company, and thus solving the problem.

To carry out this assessment and collect figures, it is essential to create a personnel file. This will bring together all the information relating to each employee (surname, first name, age, function, schedule) and to periods of absence (duration, reason, dates). The table makes it possible to track theevolution of absences over a long period, and to draw conclusions. The company can then implement new guidelines and take decisions to limit absences.

This assessment, often necessary, is also complex. To facilitate the analysis process, we recommend theuse of online personnel management tools. These software programs generally feature a dashboard area dedicated to the study and evolution of the company’s absenteeism rate. The results are generated automatically from information supplied by the human resources department. This saves time and provides reliable data.

Solutions for limiting employee absences

Individual interviews after an absence

To better understand the reasons for an absence, you might consider calling the employee in for a personal interview as soon as he or she returns. The aim is to identify any problems and help the employee reintegrate with his or her colleagues.

Medical check-ups

The company can ask a medical service provider to check whether sick leave is really justified. The purpose of this measure is to discourage abuse.

Attendance bonus

The attendance bonus rewards the punctuality and commitment of a company’s employees. The aim is to encourage staff to be as present as possible at work. In the event of absence, even justified, the bonus may be reduced or cancelled.

Ensure that staff work in good conditions

Poor working conditions will ultimately lead to absenteeism among a company’s employees. Stress, burn-out or severe fatigue are often the cause of prolonged sick leave orunjustified absences. That’s why it’s so important to ensure that your company’s staff are working under the right conditions.

The rules governing working hours and rest periods for employees stipulate that a working day must not exceed 10h (sometimes 12h, depending on the collective bargaining agreement concerned). An employee may not work more than 48 hours a week. Breaks of at least 20 minutes are granted every 6 hours, and a weekly rest period of 35 consecutive hours is mandatory. This law ensures the health and well-being of company employees.

Taking into account employees’ unavailability and vacation wishes is also a good way of limiting absences. Employees will be less inclined to take time off if the dates they have proposed are accepted. In this way, they can better reconcile their personal and professional lives. But if need be, can an employer refuse leave? Yes, they can. In exceptional circumstances, to ensure continuity of service or to cope with an increase in activity. The employer’s refusal must not be abusive.

Using HR software

Designing work schedules using HR management software is the best way to manage absences and schedule modulations. Entering all the information manually every day on an Excel spreadsheet is time-consuming and can lead to errors. With an online planning tool, you can better structure the management of leave and absences in your company. Teams can view their calendar at any time and modify it more independently. In particular, they can position themselves directly on work slots or quickly inform the HR department of last-minute unavailability.

Coping with last-minute absences

Create a database of potential candidates

When a last-minute absence occurs, it’s often difficult to find a qualified person who’s immediately available to replace you. The best approach is to anticipate the unexpected by creating a contact list of potential candidates. Over the months and years, a company often accumulates applications. You can keep interesting profiles and enter their contact details in your database, so that you can contact them if the need arises.

Looking for an in-house replacement

Launching an internal appeal is also a very effective way of finding a replacement. The volunteer can work overtime to make up for the absence of an employeeHR management software is very useful for finding an available person within the company. It enables you to view the schedules of all your staff and communicate your needs quickly and efficiently. Once validated, the HR department can easily modify schedules, without fear of making mistakes.

Repeated absences or last-minute unavailability can have serious consequences for a company’s productivity. Employers need to quickly identify the causes of excessive absenteeism, so they can take action. To do this, it is advisable to use HR management software. These online tools provide an analysis of absenteeism within the organization, and enable you to view all the staff available to meet an urgent replacement requirement.