Absence and its effects on the person and the organisation

“Absence makes the heart grow fonder” so the proverb says, but your boss might share this warmth towards you!

Most of us have the odd day off work or ‘sickie’, and many of us also have the occasional prolonged absence, as a result of injury or illness.  However, for a substantial minority, chronic ill-health, stress or depression results in regular long-term absence.  Long-term absence is something that preoccupies both government and HR departments (it doesn’t make them fonder either), because of its cost to the economy and the organisation.

Our data suggest that there may also be a negative impact on individual quality of working life from long-term absence.

We’re interested in a number of research questions related to the impact of absence:

  • How does increasing absence influence quality of working life?
  • What are the effects of long-term absence on well-being and other work life factors?
  • What might improve quality of working life of those who experience long-term absence, so that the risks of further long-term absence, poor performance and productivity, and potential loss of employment are reduced?
  • How does management-support influence the experience of long-term absence?

The data we've gathered recently sheds some light on these important questions.  We’ll be writing up this research soon, but in the meantime, if you're interested in finding out more please get in touch.