Record number of staff spurn sick days
A record number of workers are taking no days off sick, but long-term absences are growing because of rising stress and back pain, according to a new workplace survey.
The proportion of employees taking no sick leave rose to 51% last year compared with 46% 12 months earlier, the annual survey carried out by manufacturers' organisation EEF and Westfield Health found. The improvement was driven by workers with non-manual jobs such as office staff, among whom zero absence has risen from 50% to 58%.
Nearly three-quarters of firms count 40% of their staff as taking no time off for illness, up from 58% in 2010. However, long-term absences are on the rise, with almost 40% of companies reporting an increase. "With our economy still suffering from weak growth, we need to pull every possible lever to improve our economic performance," said Professor Sayeed Khan, EEF's chief medical adviser. "This includes helping employees to return to health and work as soon as possible. We need a fresh approach from government to address deep-rooted problems such as stress and back pain."
A recent decline in the overall sickness absence rate has flattened off. Average working days lost to absence have nudged up slightly to 5.1 days per employee per year from five last time, and 6.7 in 2007.
"Encouragingly, this year's survey results show a decline in short-term absence, particularly among those companies which are being proactive in managing sickness absence and are implementing measures such as health insurance," Paul Shires, Westfield Health executive director said. "However, as the survey shows overall sickness absence has plateaued and stress-related absenteeism has grown, it is clear that more needs to be done to aid and assist employers with their healthcare needs."
- 1 BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate
- 2 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 3 18th century sex toy found in 'toilet of sword fighting school' in Poland
- 4 'I wish my teacher knew...': Young students share their 'heartbreaking' worries in notes
- 5 Rebecca Francis accuses Ricky Gervais of using 'influence' to target female hunters after receiving barrage of death threats
General Election 2015: David Cameron catching up in polls – but he badly needs a clear lead
The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey 25 years on
South Africa xenophobic attacks: Shops looted and violence on streets of Johannesburg as foreigners are forced to hide in police stations
Earthworms rain down from skies over Norway, puzzling scientists
18th century sex toy found in 'toilet of sword fighting school' in Poland
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
Russian warships in English Channel 'to conduct anti-aircraft and anti-submarine military drills'
iJobs Money & Business
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £45,000: SThree: SThree Group have been well e...
£50000 - £667000 per annum + excellent benefits : Ashdown Group: IT Manager / ...
£13000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Scotland's leading life insuran...
£40000 - £45000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: Training Programme Manag...