Royal Mail incentive scheme cuts sickness absence

The Royal Mail is to repeat a scheme which rewards postal workers with new cars and holiday vouchers if they do not take any sick leave.

Attendance levels have risen by 11% – about 1,000 workers a day – since it was launched last August, the firm said. Staff who completed six months without a day off sick were entered in a prize draw.

In that time, 37 workers have won a new car, 70 have gained £2,000 worth of holiday vouchers, and 90,000 have secured £150 worth of vouchers.

The company said it had also introduced a medical helpdesk for staff and access to health services had also been improved.

The Royal Mail found sickness absence levels from last August to January, the duration of the scheme, averaged 5.7%, compared with 6.7% for the same period a year earlier.

A second scheme has now started, giving staff a further opportunity to be entered into a draw to win more new cars and holiday vouchers if they take no sick days.

“This package of practical support and ‘thank-yous’ has made a big difference,” said Tony McCarthy, Royal Mail’s group director for people.

CBI figures show that absenteeism costs UK industry £11.6bn each year.


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