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World Cup Fever - how to manage employee absence

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So the World Cup is in full swing and England is in the semi-finals!!  It might even be coming home!

Although the match is due to kick off outside of working hours, as an employer, what do you do about late requests for annual leave and  suspicious sickness absences that follow the big game?

It's good to be flexible with your employees, but business needs do come first, which means that it is not unusual to have to decline late requests for annual leave. It might be worth reminding employees that if a leave request is refused, and the employee fails to attend work, then this will be treated as an unauthorised absence which may lead to disciplinary proceedings being initiated.

It's really important to have a robust sickness absence policy, and now is a good time to re-iterate it to your employees. You might even consider putting a temporary sickness absence reporting procedure in place, so that employees who go off sick during this time report their absence verbally to a senior member of staff.  This can be a good deterrent for absences that are not genuine.

And don't forget that if you can categorically prove that sickness is not genuine - if, for example, you spot social media posts showing what a great time they had on their sick day - this, of course, can be dealt with via  the disciplinary process.

If you would like advice on your policies and procedures or guidance on requests for time off work and sickness absence, please do not hesitate to contact Lubna Laheria on 01384 445885 or 0800 118 1500.