What strategy could be used to help reduce absenteeism in the work place?


Unfortunately, the word absenteeism is commonly defined as an “employee’s intentional or habitual absence from work”. As you can appreciate this is a complex issue to tackle and can be quite challenging, as it has a direct impact on a company’s profits and also on staff productivity and morale. As important it also has direct impact on the UK economy.  

Did you know that?

  • Sickness absence costs UK businesses an estimated £29bn each year. [1]
  • The average worker takes 6.6 days off each year due to sickness. [2]
  • An estimated 137.3m working days were lost due to sickness or injury in the UK in 2016. [3]
  • The most common causes for long-term absence were stress, acute medical conditions, mental ill health and musculoskeletal injuries. [4]
  • The most common causes for short-term absence were minor illness, stress, musculoskeletal injuries and mental ill health. [5]


  • [1] Health at Work: Economic Evidence Report 2016
  • [2] Health at Work: Economic Evidence Report 2016
  • [3] ONS Sickness absence in the labour market: 2016
  • [4] CIPD Health and Well-being at Work Survey Report May 2018
  • [5] CIPD Health and Well-being at Work Survey Report May 2018

I’ve read comments suggesting that 6 out 10 workers don’t like their workplace. If that’s true, what are the reasons from an employee’s prospective?


Could it be:


  • Financial worries a major contributing factor that can lead to sleepless nights, create stress and mental health issues. This impacts on people’s performance at work and they are often unwilling to discuss these issues with their employer.
  • Employees may not feel part of the team or, understand how their role impacts on the company fortunes or, have no inter-action with the business owners.
  • The company’s “Mission or Vision Statement” is not promoted or communicated to their employees.

Would better communication help?


Richmond House believe that engaging employees creates an inclusive atmosphere for workers who want to go to work not just for the money but to also have a real sense of purpose and well-being.


  • From a HR Directors’ point of view, increasing staff engagement can have a very positive impact. Engaged employees are less likely to quit and are typically more positive about their futures. It is easier to recruit new talented people to their business, as engaged employees can be their “greatest” champions in the recruitment process.


  • From a Financial Director’s point of view, they can focus on business rather than worry about the cost of absenteeism, redundancies or, unhelpful employment tribunal costs. Regular recruitment often necessitates unscheduled costs too. What every FD would like is to reduce unnecessary staff turnover?


The question is how to best achieve this engagement?

I believe real leadership from the Board creates the foundation for a successful business with a clear repetitive message to everyone in the company.  From our experiences there is not a “one size fits all” answer as different age groups have different needs. For instance, younger staff may benefit from education on the ideal levels of saving to achieve the best outcomes, whilst older workers are more concerned how to achieve the best use of the funds they have already built up over the years.

Richmond House are “financial educators” – financial planning is not just about pensions. It’s more about helping employees to have better understanding about other areas such as the implications of debt, dealing with elderly parents / bereavement, the importance of personal Wills, planning for retirement, threat of redundancy and, other issues that helps to reduce anxiety. Understanding the interaction between various situations and taking a “big picture” view is very important. Knowledge is key, and we aim to ensure that employees gain understanding and therefore appreciation of their whole employee benefits package.


We really believe that a human point of contact is very important. Someone who has the experience and knowledge can discuss these issues in a plain English thereby engendering confidence, is much better than simply giving someone a link to a webpage and saying “Go and find out for yourself”.

The Next Stage.


We would be happy to engage with any employer who would like to discuss this further, call our Corporate Services Director -Ian Jenkins directly on 01438 345756 to arrange an exploratory appointment.


This information is provided strictly for general consideration only. No action must be taken or refrained from based on its contents alone. Accordingly, no responsibility can be assumed for any loss occasioned about the content hereof and any such action or inaction. Professional advice is necessary for every case.



Nigel Taylor Cert PFS, Dip FA

Financial Planner