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Sickies “Epidemic”

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Skiving work is reaching epidemic proportions according to a new survey by employment law firm, Peninsula.

The survey of 2127 employees and 975 employers from a range of industries across the UK shows that employees are finding it easier to make up excuses to skip work.

In 1998 only 63% of employers said they had found an increase in uncertified absences, while six years on a huge 85% admitted to the problem.

The findings come as no surprise with almost all respondents, 91% admitting that they made up excuses to escape work.

Attempts to combat growing absenteeism, however, had been put into place by 74% of survey respondents up from just under half at 47% in 1998.

Peninsula, managing director Peter Done commented: “The priority for employers is to be aware that this problem is milking their business and hundreds of businesses around the country millions of pounds.

“It is not a problem which can be solved overnight. It is a problem which has to be implemented over time with both strict policies for absence and disciplinary procedures for those who have a running tendency to be absent through skiving.”

The law firm recommends implementing a disciplinary procedure which challenges employee’s reasoning for absence. In a warning, however, they say that any new procedures should be introduced ‘delicately’. The aim it says should be to eliminate ‘skivers’ rather than catch workers out, which might damage motivation levels.

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