Call centre staff at O2 to phone in sick to the nurse

Mobile phone operator 02 is rolling out a nurse-led health and absence management service to its new Glasgow call centre which opens on 6 February.

Under the service, provided by Active Health Partners (AHP), when employees are unwell, instead of calling their manager, they will call AHP’s Nurse Contact Centre to report their absence.

If their absence is because of sickness, a qualified nurse will offer confidential health advice, and support the employee to a speedier recovery.

The service notifies managers and provides an estimated return-to-work date for the employee, based on their symptoms. This is designed to enable better planning for managers when arranging staff cover for absence

Employees at O2’s new Glasgow operation and an extension of the service to the Leeds site will mean AHP’s 24-hour nurse contact centre will service 4,350 employees across all O2’s customer service operations.

Ann Pickering, head of HR for O2, said: “We recognise that when staff are genuinely ill, they need support and will benefit from professional health advice. Whenever employees are absent from work due to illness, it puts added pressure on their colleagues.

“Working with AHP enables us to provide the right level of support to our employees and helps to reduce the number of working days lost.”

Last year, Personnel Today revealed that two out of three employers involved in a government trial of AHP’s absence management programme had pulled out saying they were unhappy with the service

Ingolv Urnes, AHP’s chief executive, said the company’s service was better suited to larger employers with more serious absence problems.

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