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When a member of staff is off sick, line manager should be contacting staff on a weekly basis during the first four weeks off work and then a monthly basis after this, as a guide, obviously it may be appropriate for line managers to contact staff more regularly than this. When line managers contact staff they should cover the following topics, it may not be appropriate for the line manager to cover all of these topics each time they speak to the member of staff:
Research from the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (2004 Employers Survey) has shown that one of the most effective ways of reducing sickness is for Line Managers to conduct Return to Work Interviews after every incidence of sickness with the member of staff concerned
Below is guidance is indicative of the types of topics that might be discussed in such an interview.
Enquire about health
You need to establish:
Consider whether the individual should be referred to the Occupational Health Department – if you are not sure seek guidance from the HR Directorate or the Occupational Health Department.
Consequences and observations
Remind the individual of necessity for full attendance
Point out the effects on others of his/her non attendance
Using the attendance records draw the individual’s attention to their attendance record
Confirm the University’s attitude to good attendance
Use the opportunity to explore ways the individual can improve his/her attendance
Completion of Formalities
Complete a Sickness Form and forward it to the HR Directorate. Self certificate
Where you have concerns about the amount of sickness a person is taking follow the meeting up with a written memo stating the discussion and any action being taken and give a copy of the memo to the member of staff and to the HR Directorate. If the individual does not agree with the memo then tell them they may submit their own version.
Reaffirm the University’s expectation of full attendance.
Explain to the individual the implications of any further absence.
Check that the individual clearly understands what is required of him/her in the future.