Prizes for staff who don’t take sick days

The council's headquarters, Mossley Mill.
The council's headquarters, Mossley Mill.

NEWTOWNABBEY Borough Council is to offer rewards to employees who take no time off due to illness.

The local authority this week agreed that an annual prize draw offering complimentary tickets for theatre shows and gym memberships should take place to recognise employees with no sickness absence.

A report presented to this month’s Policy and Governance Committee meeting reveals that the council has improved its sickness absence figure over the past couple of years, with a reduction in the average number of days lost per employee.

The latest figures show that between April 2011 and March 2012 there were 5,011 days lost to sickness absence - a decrease of 681 days compared to the previous year. That represents a reduction of 0.68 average days lost per employee, down from 14.06 per year to 13.38. And between April and August this year, sickness absence levels have also been lower compared to the same months in 2011.

However, despite the encouraging statistics, senior managers at Mossley Mill have been looking for ways to further improve absence rates.

The report to committee members said: “As part of our Health & Wellbeing Strategy, a number of targeted steps have been corporately introduced to proactively manage the current absence rates (which largely relate to long term absence). Included was a review of how to best recognise and reward employees with no sickness absence.

“Last year, approximately 38 per cent of employees had no sickness absence and work was recently completed to establish how the council could reward excellent attendance records.”

Read the full story in this week’s Times...