Can you please advice me that if an employee chooses not to attend an office picnic for personal reason , in that case should he/she be marked present since the office remains closed on that day . Or should a leave be deducted . Logically I think the employee to be marked present. Kindly post your view.

From India, Pune
Partner - Risk Management
Strategic Business Management Includes Revenue
Presently Working As Dy Manager Hr &
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Raj Kumar Hansdah
Shrm, Od, Hrd, Pms
Sr. Hr Executive @ Polymerupdate
Harsh Shukla
Ceo And Md Of 3 Uk Based Mnc's
Retired From Air India
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Raj Kumar Hansdah

Yes, you are right.
On a Closed Holiday, an employee can not be marked absent (unless otherwise that is his duty day).
Attending an office picnic; though is recommended; yet an employee should not be penalized for his inability to attend.
Sometimes there are genuine reasons for not attending, which I had come across, such as sickness in family, pregnancy of wife, relatives marriage ceremony etc etc.
One should remember that an employees are not machines or slaves; they have their own social life and responsibilities too; which they plan to attend to during Weekly Off or Closed Holidays.
Warm regards.

From India, Delhi

Hi Shuvra,
The picnic is actually not a holiday neither is it a working day.
So practically the question of attendance marking do not arise.
The day has been chosen for an event - picnic so that people can have time off from their work and perhaps some team building games can be exercised.
In this case, we are not to mark the attendance, instead we mark the day as picnic day.
Since it is not a working day and ideally the person is not absent from work, we do not deduct the leave / pay of the person.
Hope it helped.

From India, Mumbai
Harsh Shukla

Hi Shuvra,
I have a slightly different view than the above members, in that you have to consider:
Was the Picnic day a working day and that is why the office was closed
Was the personal reason given a valid one
How would you have treated the absence if it was a normal working day
Your answers to the above should guide you as to how to proceed.
Hope this helps,

From United Kingdom, Barrow

Hi Harsh,
If you could kindly explain how would it the reason or the day be of that importance in the attendance marking?
In my firm, we went on a picnic on sat (which is ideally a working half day) and since we have major male staff, the female staff were not comfortable joining the picnic.
Picnic is not a mandate thing. Surely it helps in team building and helps in employee engagement and motivation but how does it help if we force them to come on picnic.
Deducting leave or pay for not coming on picnic = forcing them to come on picnic or get penalized.
Ideally that's not how it works.
A simple example - though children love chocolates, we can't force them to eat one.
My views, there can be other view and I would like to be educated on that.

From India, Mumbai
Harsh Shukla

Hi Ankita,
I understand and appreciate your view.
I feel it is important to establish if the picnic was an official event, held on a (normally) working day, and therefore, mandatory. In which case normal rules would apply. Hence, the need to establish the reason for absence. Particularly, if the company is spending resources for employee engagement and motivation.
If it was NOT an official event then attendance should be discretionary, (but desirable) in which case no action should be taken, because the picnic becomes a purely social event.
I agree with you where a group (in your case, all female staff) are uncomfortable then the WHOLE group should be excused; (although this may actually defeat the object of a picnic if it was for employee engagement/motivation purposes).
On a more humorous note: my children love chocolate so much, I fear I would never have the opportunity to see if i can FORCE them to eat one !!!

From United Kingdom, Barrow
Raj Kumar Hansdah

Harsh has a point; whether the picnic was held on a working day ??
Although, it is unlikely that an office picnic is held on a working day and the office is Closed on that day.
However, I have covered this rare option;
"On a Closed Holiday, an employee can not be marked absent (unless otherwise that is his duty day)."
to cover the option of some employees having shift working day.
Warm regards.

From India, Delhi

Bothe Ankita and Harsh have valid points and the proper action, to me, lies between the two.
Picnic is an event but not an offcial duty so that an emlployee cannot be compelled to attend it and given various circumstances, it is left to an employee's option to attend it or not.
If the picnic was held on a holiday, there is no need to mark any thing excepting marking Sunday" (if held on Sunday and if it is holiday) or simply 'holiday ' if it was held on any other holiday. There is no need to mark 'present' or 'absent' since the weekly offs(Sundays) or holidays are paid holidays.
If, as Harsh pointed out, the picnic was held on a working day and the office remained closed solely beacuse of picnic, then that day shall be marked as Picnic day and shall be treated as paid day for all irespective one attends picnic or not.
This is my view.
HR & Labour Law Advsior

From India, Mumbai
Prashant B Ingawale

Dear Ankita,
I second with Mr. Harsh because if employee engagement activity organized by employer inside the premises of the company like picnic & employer has put in resources to carry out it successfully ( I assume the activity organized on working day ) in that case if any employee is absenteeing himself /herself from that activity will be deemded as Absentee from the activity so this Absenteeism should be consider as Leave / Absent with due permission with respective concerned approving authority.

From India, Pune

Kindly quote the PICNIC as SOCIAL EVENT if it was plan to release the stress and get-together for having some fun. It is not at all associated with our PROFESSIONAL LIFE.
- Most of the time picnics are scheduled on weekends inorder to avoid routine activities.
- If they are scheduled on weekday, nowhere employee can be held responsible for his absenteesm.
- Even if the Management had decided to FUND for SOCIAL EVENT(PICNIC), it cannot be treated as OFFICIAL EVENT nor the employees can be held responsible for their attendance..
- OFFICIAL EVENTS are scheduled on WEEKDAYS as it associated with an SPECIFIC BUSINESS OBJECTIVES
With profound regards

From India, Chennai

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