Attendance and Absence Management

Sickness absence can place a substantial burden on business not only when it is due to long term absence, but also when it is due to frequent short term absence. The effect can be even more exaggerated when the absentee is in a key position perhaps dealing with important customers.

In other circumstances the person may not be working safely or efficiently and this may be giving rise to management concern.

What can CHS do to help?

Firstly we can establish precisely the reason for the absence. One of our specialists will see the employee either at work or home or at our clinic.

Sometimes the absence is due to workplace problems, typically relationships with work colleagues or work load, and sometimes there are other complicating factors relating to domestic circumstances.

At other times the employee may be suffering from a medical condition that is preventing them from working or preventing them from undertaking their normal job. Where the diagnosis is in question we can undertake a medical enquiry to establish the diagnosis either with the general practitioner or the hospital doctor. In some instances we can arrange for the individual to undertake further tests or investigations to enable the diagnosis to be confirmed.

Following our enquiry we provide a report that will make recommendations regarding rehabilitation, if that is possible, and any adjustments that may need to be made to enable the person to return to work. We often make recommendations in liaison with management on reduced hours to enable the person back to work. We also assist individuals who may require assistance in the workplace, for example with workplace aids for employees with back problems, as well as providing advice on seating.

In some instances we have been able to arrange for employees to work reduced hours within the DWP Permitted Work arrangements. In other circumstances where there have been travel difficulties to and from work, we have helped employees to obtain travel finance through the government Fares to Work scheme.

Where rehabilitation is not possible we would make recommendations for retirement on medical incapability grounds.

Pension Issues

We often advise pension funds on a person’s eligibility for benefits. Usually the determination that is required is to establish whether the person is able to continue to work in their existing job, or alternatively whether the person is totally incapable of any employment. In some instances sheltered work may be possible.

Alcohol and Substance Abuse

We have developed a draft policy on substance abuse for employers. This provides employers with a tool to enable them to manage employees with substance abuse problems.