How do your staff turnover and absence rates stack up?

Labour turnover and absence are the two most fundamental metrics that an organisation can track in order to assess its health – and no organisation can control what it is not measuring.


This article was originally published on 16 May 2012 and is not updated.

XpertHR provides up-to-date guidance on labour turnover and absence rates.

Research on absence shows that organisations which record absence figures are better positioned to tackle the underlying causes if voluntary resignations or sickness absence levels are too high.

It typically is not enough to measure these statistics in isolation – more information is needed so that employers can benchmark their rates against other similar organisations.

XpertHR’s annual labour turnover and absence surveys analyse findings in detail – for example, by industry and region – to enable organisations to benchmark themselves against their comparators. This means that survey participants can gain a meaningful comparison of their rates, which can fluctuate according to sector.

Why is benchmarking important in 2012?

Since the recession started to bite in 2008, organisations have been under severe pressure to cut costs and make cuts. This can result in higher levels of stress, and increases in absence and staff turnover. It is therefore more important than ever for employers to benchmark key metrics such as labour turnover and absence across their workforces. Only by doing this can they know how to take action to improve absence management.

Absence levels have a direct bearing on productivity levels so it is not an area that organisations can afford to ignore. Last year’s survey found that the cost of absence amounted to £442 per head as a median (the midpoint in the range), rising to £553 as an average.

Last year’s headline findings

In 2011, XpertHR research reported an average 2.8% of working time being lost to absence – equivalent to about six-and-a-half days per employee.

What do I get for taking part?

For taking part in the survey, you will receive a complementary copy of both 2012 research reports on labour turnover and absence as soon as they are published, as well as a free copy of our report “The cost of maternity leave: the 2012 XpertHR survey” immediately after you complete the survey. You will also receive instant access to free copies of last year’s labour turnover and absence reports.

This is a confidential practice survey. Your organisation will not be referred to by name.

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