|Employers see rise in bogus sick days|
|Written by Erin Hogg, Daily Vidette Staff Writer|
|Thursday, 11 November 2010 00:16|
Calling in sick to work to take a mental day off is not something new, but employers are reporting that more employees are calling in bogus excuses for not coming into the office, a Chicago Tribune article said.
CareerBuilder.com reported three in 10 employees are calling in sick when they could come in to work, and 16 percent of bosses fire workers who miss a day of work without a valid excuse.
Mark Hoelscher, professor for the Institute of Entrepreneurial Studies and former business owner, explained in times of economic hardships, employees will take more time off from work.
“In these times, people are working with more for less and there is a constant threat of being laid off from a job. When there is an increase of work, it increases the stress level of the employee and they are more likely to take a day off for themselves,” Hoelscher said.
Most employees experiencing stress from work usually are so stressed they cannot eat or sleep.
“There is mental and physical deterioration when employees are stressed constantly from work; they are definitely not faking it,” he said.
To reduce the stress at work from the threat of layoffs, employers need to address the issue and remember there is a human capacity to the amount of stress one can handle, he explained.
“Employers need to reassure their employees that anybody who wants a job there can be sure that they will still have it. Once the layoffs are over, employers need to tell their employees that no one else will be let go,” he said.
As for on the job stress, employers can try to stretch their employees to challenge and excite them about their jobs, he said.
“The most important thing for employers to do is to be transparent and honest with their employees and have compassion for what they might be going through,” he said.
Bob Flynn, manager of the McAlister’s Deli in the Bone Student Center, said there has not been a rise of employees taking more sick days than usual.
“We have about 120 employees at McAlister’s and the usual excuses for missing work are school work and illnesses. However, we really don’t see many people taking off work during the week,” Flynn said.
Flynn said there is a system for calling in to miss work and a point system to keep employees coming to work.
“We work on a point system; employees can call an hour or so before their shift and miss work for two points, but if they don’t call, they receive more points,” Flynn said.
“After so many points, disciplinary action is taken. We are not allowed to see doctor’s notes so there really is no way of proving if an employee is ill or not,” he added.
Flynn added a factor that could contribute to the low number of sick days is the flexibility of scheduled hours with students.