jyoti_jain004 Started The Discussion:
I have recently joined this organization, which didnt have any leave policy. I implemented one in accordance to the Mum Shops Estb Act. Now there is a trend of employees going on sick leave every week. Every other day I am getting sick leave requests. We are allowing a total of 8 CL/SL every year, the rest is unpaid. But the emp just dont seem to care that their sal will be deducted while the mngmnt is gttng upset. What cud be the reason for this sudden wave of sick leaves.. ?? Kindly assist....
It would help if firstly, you have a system whereby you make producing a medical certificate mandatory. The doctor must mention that the employee was sick. Also, you must have a performance management system in place and during the performance appraisal be able to discuss any issues you have with reference to the leaves availed. Also, imperative is to ensure that your leave policy is balanced. Study the trends of why, when and how many leaves your employees avail. Then revisit your leave policy to make appropriate revisions that would take care of the employee's requirements, the employers interest, as well being legally sound.
It is very clear that workers are looking for every other opportunity to get lost.This is indication of precarious work condition. You make take up a small survey to know the reasons.You may give out the work to some out side agency- may be some students and you would know.
Peopels Trg & Research Centre
Here are a few things you must do:
1. Call an all-hands meet to be presided by a senior manager. Help the senior manager with data to be able to expalin to the employees the impact of this behavior
2. When employees sick, do not treat them with suspicion or else you could have a "cry wolf" situation which can spiral out of control very quickly
3. Sudden unexplained sickness absenteeism is a clear sign of dissatisfaction with whatever is going on in the office. It is rather difficult to speculate
4. If things are not moving forward, get an outside agency to help assess and improve employee engagement. I know one company Acengage (don't know their details) that does work on employee engagement issues but you can try any other you know.
Hope this helps...all the best
I have a few suggestions. You can implement one or more of them depending on the suitability to your organisation.
1. You need to first find out the actual reason for employees taking Sick Leave so often and try to takle that. For eg: If the reason is that people are getting stressed out due to management overloading them with work, then you may need to have more staff.
2. If the reason for SL is genuine, try to find out if there is a pattern or common reason for sickness...eg If Flu is a common cause then you need to educate your employees or bring about more awareness as to how flu can be avoided by following hygienic practices, etc or if the reason is neckpain/backpain you need to train them on sitting postures, desk exercises, etc.
3. Announce a reward for those who give 100% or best attendance i.e for those who don't take any Sick Leave
4. Announce encashment of unused Sick Leave if feasible.
5. Formulate a strict Sick Leave Policy wherein you can question the capability of an employee who takes Sick Leave quite often which in extreme cases can result in termination of employment. This should stop people from misusing the Sick Leave.
6. Consider attendance for Performance Appraisals (should not include Earned Leave) which should ultimately affect increments, bonus, etc and let the employees be aware of this well in advance.
7. Put up a list of SL taken with employee names and no. of days of SL in the order of maximum leave taken to least leave taken on a monthly basis on your notice board. This will work wonders sometime as people don't like their names to appear on the top of the list.
Hope this helps. Do let me know your thoughts.
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It appears that prior to your joining the leave policy was not adhered even as per existing law goverened by Mum. shops & ..... Act.
Employees were used to take leave at will. But after you joined, you started regulating as per Law. People normally do not like to be regulated that too after having used to certain way of life.
It appears futher that they must have felt, you are abstructing their freedom, hence they are trying to frustrate your regulations.
Normally you should have taken them into confidence before implementing and prior intimation
to them through their superiors would have paved for smooth change over from anarchy to orderlyness.
What you can do now ?
As a employer you have every right to reject the un paid leave ( any leave for that matter barring a genine one )on urgency of work.
You may seek Medical certificate from a govt. Doctor or from your company approved doctor for their utilising entitled SL or unpaid leave.
Advice them that remaining absent on frequent ill heath, they will be subjected to testify before a medical board ( to be constituted by the management) and may render them medically unfit to continue with their job.
Ensure you get the support of Management before move further.
Good luck !
HR & Labour Law Consultant
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