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Survey finds: December is the most popular time of year for sick leave abuse

by , 29 October 2014
December is almost upon us.

While this time of year provides an opportunity for you to tie up loose ends before the holiday rush, employees often see this time as an opportunity to abuse sick leave. That's according to a survey by careerbuilder.com.

Read on to find out the details of the study and what you can do to minimise sick leave abuse in your business this December.


December is the most popular time of year for employees to call in sick

 
According to the survey, 21% of employers who took part in the survey said December is the most popular time of year for employees to call in sick. It's followed by January (17%) and February (14%).
 
So why do so many employees call in sick during this time?
 
Employees who admitted to faking being sick during this time said they did it to spend time with family and friends (69%), while others wanted to holiday shop or decorate for the season.
 
The careerbuilder.com survey included a representative sample of 3,103 workers, 2,203 hiring managers and human resource professionals across various industries and company sizes.
 
Even though this study is from abroad, chances are the situation isn't that different in South Africa.
 
That's why you must take steps to minimise sick leave abuse in your business this December.
 
How do you do this?
 
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Use these three tips to minimise sick leave abuse in your business
 

1. Remind your employees of your sick leave policy.  Make it clear that you'll discipline them for breaching it and will treat sick leave as unpaid leave if they can't present a valid medical certificate.
 
2. Conduct return to work interviews. Employees will think twice about abusing sick leave if they know their supervisor will conduct an interview when they return to work.

3. Check medical certificates to ensure they're valid. Read this article to discover what to look for to ensure the certificate is legit.
 
For more tips to reduce sick leave abuse, check out The Complete Guide to Managing Sick Leave.
 
The bottom line: Sick leave abuse is rife in December. Use these tips to minimise abuse so your business doesn't suffer.


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