Sick days lost costs £10bn

employers lost more than £10bn though employee absenteeism last year, according
to CBI research. The annual survey, Pulling Together, claims that the average
cost of absence per employee is £434 which, when projected across the UK
workforce, totals £10.7bn.

year a total of 192 million days were lost, equivalent to 861,000 people not
working for a year. The most common form of absence was sick leave.

of absenteeism were higher in the public than private sector. Public-sector staff
took an average of 10.2 days off per employee – nearly three days more than in
the private sector.

Socpo president Keith Handley said absentee rates are tackled effectively in
local government.

said, "All local authorities include sickness absence interventions as
part of their personnel policies and the measure of working days lost to
sickness is now a national Best Value performance indicator which authorities
will need to constantly benchmark against."

survey shows that 80 per cent of absences are short-term.

Anderson, the CBI’s director of HR policy, said, "It is worrying that
there is such a big gap between the best and worst performing organisations.
The survey shows that the most effective approach is for an employer to tailor
its HR policies to the actual causes of absence in its particular

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