Addressing Absenteeism: 5 Unique Ways to Improve Attendance and Punctuality in Any Workplace


Poor attendance and employee lateness have a detrimental effect on the operation and productivity of a workplace. When employees arrive and head home on time, it keeps things flowing smoothly and enables the team to meet their deadlines. Unfortunately, showing up to work and being there on time aren’t priorities for many employees, and the whole company suffers. 

If you’re looking to address absenteeism and punctuality in your workplace, implement the following tips:

  1. Make It Easy to Track Time

You have several options when it comes to tracking employee time. Some are more convenient than others, but regardless of the type of system you put in place, you must stress to your staff the importance of using it to clock in, clock out, and track breaks. 

Keep in mind that a fingerprint time clock or biometric access system will deliver more accurate results while making it virtually impossible for your employees to game the system. 

  1. Set Expectations with an Attendance Policy

Have a written attendance policy that spells out your expectations for attendance and punctuality. This will tell your staff what’s expected of them, how to request time off, and what the consequences are for lateness or absenteeism. 

If you already have an absenteeism policy in place, take a look at it to make sure it’s still on point. Every employee should receive a copy of this policy as part of their onboarding process. Asking them to sign that they’ve received and read it is a good way to eliminate any confusion or disagreement should anyone violate the policy. 

  1. Be Flexible

Attendance issues aren’t exactly black and white. Sometimes, there are valid reasons for being late or missing a day here or there. Being able to identify these situations and offering a flexible schedule might improve an employee’s attendance record. 

Suppose for example, that one staff member is consistently late by 15 minutes every day because she has to drop her kids off at school. Adjusting her schedule to come in and leave half an hour later would be an easy way to give her time to drop her kids off at school and arrive at work on time. 

  1. Stress the Importance of Good Attendance

Take every opportunity to stress to your staff how important it is that they show up to work as scheduled every day. Explain to them that failing to do so not only affects the daily operations of the business but also their fellow employees who have to pick up the slack when they’re absent. 

Talking about attendance regularly keeps the subject top of mind, causing your team members to think twice before hitting the snooze button. If someone is having a constant problem with absenteeism, discuss it one-on-one to find a solution that works for both of you.

  1. Reward Good Attendance

Recognizing and rewarding good attendance is a great way to encourage your staff to come to work on time every day. It’s also a good way to motivate others to strive for a better attendance record. The reward doesn’t have to be huge to be an incentive – extra time off for good attendance is quite the motivator. 

Good attendance in any workplace is vital to the success of the business. In a time when absenteeism and lateness are at an all-time high in most industries, managers must enforce their attendance policies. Hopefully, the tips above will help you address any absenteeism issues you’re having with your own staff. 

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