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ballyclover  
#1 Posted : 10 October 2019 09:44:07(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
ballyclover

Looking for opinions.

The company that currently employee me use a sickness absence tool named the Bradford Factor. If any off, you are not familiar with this formula it basically logs absences and sickness days and looks to identify patterns leading to possible dishonestly.

If used correctly the factor works well in identifying where an employee may need help or encouragement. The company I work for use it as a trigger to discipline employees. So basically, you ring in sick with the sickness bug you score points, once certain points are reached  a verbal warning will follow eventually leading to dismissal for continued abscences. A doctors sicknote does prevent the point scoring but these are not available for the majority of short illness.

Now my guys are not happy with this, as some of them know they are close to triggering either further disciplinaries or new ones. So, they are returning to work sooner than they should. For example, with sickness bug with in the normal standard 48hr isolation period, spreading to other members of staff and of course unable to do their own jobs correctly. Furthermore, it is leading to stress, ill health and resentment. Or feel forced to take holidays

Does anyone have any knowledge regarding this tool? I do not believe it is being applied fairly or appropriately- and surely, we are leaving ourselves open to possible disclimation laws, wrongful dismissal and mental health issues. How can I have top management review the situation?

thank you

CptBeaky  
#2 Posted : 10 October 2019 10:08:59(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
CptBeaky

Surely the whole point of the Bradford factor is that is is not as concerned with time off, more with incidences of time off? Therefore people coming back early is less of an issue than those who don't take time off at all.

S2 x D = B    S=Incidences D=Total days off and B=Bradford Factor Score

Obviously this is a legal method of logging abscence as long as the trigger points are fairly set and any revies/discipline are also carried out fairly. At the end of the day there has to be some consistent way of measuring abscence in a company and your company has chosen this particular method.

Presenteeism (turning up to work when you really shouldn't) is a growing problem that does need addressing within the work place. You would neeed to look at this and advise as appropriate. Follow trends and report on those.

Personally I find absenteeism is a doubled edged sword in regards to morale. People with good attendance records get annoyed when others seem to be taking the proverbial and getting away with it. Nobody wants to have to cover for somebody that only turns up when they feel like it, with no reward. Alternatively there are many good reasons not to be at work.

Bit of a meander, sorry. But basically it is not the method that you use that is the issue, it is how you use it. 

thanks 1 user thanked CptBeaky for this useful post.
A Kurdziel on 10/10/2019(UTC)
CptBeaky  
#3 Posted : 10 October 2019 10:21:06(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
CptBeaky

That should be S squared  (SXS) x D = B

This archaic site don't like my original formatting

ballyclover  
#4 Posted : 10 October 2019 10:23:32(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
ballyclover

Hi Cpt Beaky

Completely agree, I don't think there is an issue with it's use it however as you say how it is applied. If applied fairly across all empolyees from basic operators to company directors and the trigger targets are reasonable then thats great. It becomes an issue when people feel they are being forced to return to work before they really should, adding to stress and further bouts of health issues.

I firmly believe that before any disiplinary action is taken the tool is used to review an employees situation, why have they continued to be off sick, do they have medical issues we should be aware off. Is thier work load causing them stress are they being bullied- all relevent questions for me. It shouldn't be a tool to bash employees over the head with.

Yes there no needs to be a method for tracking those who take the mick out of the system and its works well to identify these people- but again at the moment it is tarnishing all with the same brush

WatsonD  
#5 Posted : 10 October 2019 12:39:49(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
WatsonD

As has been said 10 one day absences score much more highly than one ten day absences as it is the number of incidences that the scoring is biased towards. One long term absence is easier to manage than the unrealiability of repeat shot absences.

I guess one way to look at it is to compare all scores across the company. Do you need to readjust your score for the averages? And consider the reasons for the absences. Are there and trends? Could there be anything you could do as a company. If it is lots of sickness - is it being caught or spread at work, i.e. care industry, where this type of absence may be more likely. You could adjust for this if you nkow there is an outbreak.

There are quite a few avenues you can explore with this. Discipline is one way, but as you have show it has flaws.

A Kurdziel  
#6 Posted : 10 October 2019 12:59:03(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
A Kurdziel

ACAS may have something about this

Hsquared14  
#7 Posted : 10 October 2019 14:57:34(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Hsquared14

You can of course get a doctor's fit note for periods that are shorter than the self certification period so that could be an option as you say a fit note rules out that absence from the score card.  It could be a way of ensuring that absences are genuine.  Where the sickness bug is concerned people should return only if at least 48 hours have elapsed after the last episode at that point they should not be able to infect others but of course that is in theory only and most people would be incapable of working so soon after the end of say Norovirus as it is particularly debilitating. I would canvas opinion in HR and make them aware of the feelings of your team, it may well be that this is an unintended consequence of another decision and it can be put right.

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