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Staff Absenteeism: The Case of Wa Municipal Education Office of the Ghana Education Service

Open Journal of Social Sciences, 2018, 6, 1-14
ISSN Online: 2327-5960
ISSN Print: 2327-5952
10.4236/jss.2018.68001 Aug. 2, 2018 1 Open Journal of Social Sciences
Staff Absenteeism: The Case of Wa Municipal
Education Office of the Ghana Education Service
Hafiz Bin Salih
Coordinator, Second Cycle Schools, Wa Municipal Education Office, Ghana Education Service, Wa, Ghana
Work absence is a critical practice in the world since the
consistent presence
of workers in the workplace is essential to attaining the aims of any depart-
ment or institution. As a result, the management might fail to realize its tar-
gets. Thus, this paper will enlarge the understanding of the field by checking
the matter at the Wa Municipal Education Office as the case analysis. Absen-
teeism impacts the general work productivity, and, consequently, can be
thought of as the antithesis of output because productivity is zero through
times of absence. Even though the consequence of personnel absenteeism on
output is certain, some institutions might dismiss the need to assess their
management procedures.
Absenteeism, Staff, Management, Productivity, Strategies
1. Introduction
Work absence is a serious practice on the globe since consistent attendance of
employees at the workplace is critical to accomplishing the goals of any institu-
tion or department. Scholars link employee absenteeism to backlogs, low prod-
uctivity, and work delay [1]. This issue arises when workers fail to report to work
as scheduled. Hence, it does not include individuals who do not appear on the
job on approved days of absence or during suspensions, vacations, strikes,
weekly rests, and holidays. Organisations tend to make adequate preparations
for these forms of absence as a way of managing their potential negative impacts.
Consequently, such absences provide immense benefits to the employee and the
firm. It is worth mentioning that people who quit without informing their em-
ployers are considered absentees until the management officially removes them
How to cite this paper:
Salih, H.B. (2018
Staff Absenteeism: The Case of Wa Muni
ipal Education Office of the Ghana Educ
tion Service
Open Journal of Social
, 1-14.
July 9, 2018
July 30, 2018
August 2, 2018
Copyright © 201
8 by author and
Research Publishing Inc.
This work is licensed
under the Creative
Commons Attribution International
License (CC BY
Open Access
H. B. Salih
10.4236/jss.2018.68001 2 Open Journal of Social Sciences
from the payroll.
Absenteeism can be classified based on the reasons that prompt employees to
miss work. Absenteeism often occurs because of low commitment by the admin-
istration, illnesses, and dissatisfaction with the job [2]. However, failing to report
to work because of family and health issues are usually unavoidable and abrupt.
Hence, the management might not have measures of addressing the issue of staff
adequacy during such circumstances. Scholars classify unscheduled absenteeism
into involuntary and voluntary absenteeism [3]. The latter type of absenteeism
arises when a worker fails to go to work due to an unsatisfactory reason, whereas
the former one occurs when acceptable circumstances, such as diseases, prompt
an individual to miss work. The classification of absenteeism into voluntary and
involuntary allows administrations to choose the most acceptable measures to
address the problem.
2. Statement of the Problem
Staff absenteeism is a major problem that affects many sectors of the economy. It
leads to a considerable cost to any institution, even when the administration
does not pay the absent employee [4]. The issue of staff absenteeism is impacting
negatively on the activities of the Wa Municipal Education Office of the Ghana
Education Service. This problem occurs since the work becomes disorganized
and schedules are delayed. Consequently, the organization may fail to achieve its
goals or meet its delivery dates. To exacerbate matters, sick pay significantly in-
creases the cost of absenteeism. Hence, individuals, businesses, and state agen-
cies should strive to minimize the occurrence and cost of staff absenteeism [5].
For instance, the provision of weekly rests and recuperation, suitable housing fa-
cilities, adequate compensations, and appropriate working conditions may play
an important role in addressing this widespread problem. Hence, enhancing the
workers’ working and living conditions is critical.
There are no official statistics regarding the cost of staff absenteeism to Gha-
na’s economy. However, findings from other parts of the planet may provide in-
valuable insight into the issue. For instance, the United Kingdom lost billions of
dollars after employees in the country failed to report to work for a total of 137
million days in 2016 [6]. Besides, the issue cost businesses in the region an an-
nual loss of one week per person. Likewise, high absenteeism in Wa Municipal
Education Office adversely impacts the implementation and maintenance of its
programs and functions.
Clearly, the Wa Municipal Education Office of the Ghana Education Service
often finds it exceedingly challenging to reduce the degree of staff absenteeism,
lower administrative costs, and increase employee productivity. However, this
issue adversely affects the economic and social growth of a country [7]. Scholars
maintain that employee absenteeism contributes to significant costs to the
economy and businesses. Accordingly, the management of the Wa Municipal
Education Office of the Ghana Education Service and other state agencies should
H. B. Salih
10.4236/jss.2018.68001 3 Open Journal of Social Sciences
strive to accomplish their strategic objectives and goals by implementing meas-
ures that effectively reduce the rate of absenteeism. Moreover, they must seek to
address employees’ needs to ensure that they support the vision and mission of
the agency, department, or organization. Overall, managing staff absenteeism is
a challenging task.
Staff absenteeism is indeed a challenging issue to the top management of the
Wa Municipal Education Office of the Ghana Education Service.
3. Background of the Study
3.1. Causes of Absenteeism
Work absence, which can be involuntary or voluntary, arises from various is-
sues. Research proves that absenteeism is a multifactorial phenomenon [8]. Re-
searchers mainly attribute this problem to health-related issues [9]. For instance,
there is a high probability that smokers, individuals with relatively high body
weight, and people who rarely engage in physical exercises will report signifi-
cantly high rates of absenteeism. Besides, researchers link work absence to de-
mographic and organizational influences, job dissatisfaction, long working
hours, poor leadership, and the lack of employee morale [10]. Therefore, while
involuntary absenteeism mainly arises from health issues, voluntary absence
might be influenced by a wider range of factors.
Most organisations find it problematic to address staff absenteeism because
the management does not realize the complexity of factors causing the problem.
Unfortunately, relatively few organizations conduct research to gain insight into
the causes of work absences within their firms. Furthermore, most studies fo-
cusing on the subject examine the issue of voluntary absence and the health
condition of workers. Nonetheless, Nicholson’s theory of attachment demon-
strates that other factors, such as a person’s maturity and age, contribute to staff
absenteeism [11]. The model suggests that young people report a significantly
high frequency of short-term work absence. Conversely, aged individuals tend to
miss work for relatively long spells. Besides, family responsibilities, minor and
serious health conditions, work-related accidents, long working hours, absences
considered an entitlement, drug use, and personal challenges are some of the key
causes of employee absenteeism. Furthermore, mental or emotional strain re-
lated to the workplace, leisure accidents, reduced morale, unauthorised holiday,
and the lack of dedication contribute to the issue of non-attendance of a person
at work. Hence, firms that report staff absenteeism should strive to address these
3.1.1. Minor Illnesses
The mental and physical wellbeing of an individual is an important determinant
of his or her health status. Indeed, poor mental and physical wellbeing are key
contributors to a high absence rate. Interestingly, many studies focusing on work
absences do not consider the impact of these critical factors on absenteeism.
Scholars often ignore the health of an employee as a cause of absenteeism since
H. B. Salih
10.4236/jss.2018.68001 4 Open Journal of Social Sciences
diseases are categorized in the “involuntary” absence group. However, it is worth
remembering that most organizations suffer from the issue of ‘short-term’ ab-
sences arising from minor illnesses. Consequently, it is important to consider
minor illness an important variable while conducting research on this subject.
Usually, individuals who miss work because of self-limiting conditions such as
minor illnesses are healthy enough to attend to their duties at the workplace.
This observation is consistent with the A-B continuum, which is reported in
Nicholson’s attachment theory [12]. This model suggests that minor health is-
sues would be positioned at the “A” level of the A-B continuum in case a person
offers his or her services in a highly demanding work setting. Conversely, minor
ailments would fall at the “B” side of the A-B continuum if an individual is
healthy and works in a less demanding workplace. Hence, a worker whose con-
dition falls at the “B” end of the continuum “could have” gone to work.
3.1.2. Stress
Mental or emotional strain refers to people’s response to the challenge of ba-
lancing certain demands based on their capacity to meet them. Stress is amongst
the most reported causes of long-term staff absenteeism. This issue eventually
causes ill health. American College of Cardiology [13] maintains that stress is a
negative feeling that leads to dry mouth, shortness of breath, increase in pulse
rate, and other physical symptoms. However, it affects each employee different-
ly; in fact, some workers experience significantly more symptoms compared to
their colleagues. Occupational stress is a person’s view of the demands of the
workplace and his or her ability to perform those responsibilities.
Stress affects many individuals and organisations. However, the management
of many organisations lacks knowledge of the way to address it [14]. Unfortu-
nately, the current literature presents contradictory findings regarding
workplace stress. For instance, some scholars assert that males are more prone to
mental or emotional strain, while other investigators maintain there is a high
prevalence of stress among females. Consequently, scholars find it exceedingly
challenging to predict the trends that will emerge from stress.
Most people only consider the negative impacts of stress on an employee.
However, researchers state that stress also has positive effects on workers based
on the extent of the agent that causes the strain. Previous research on the rela-
tionship between stress and work absences usually assesses the impact of the
emotional strain based on the “acute stress response” (“Flight or Fight” re-
sponse) [15]. This coping mechanism suggests that a person will either “fight”
these workplace demands or choose to “flee”. According to [15], an employee
with a limited degree of stress may enhance his or her performance. However, an
“unacceptable” level of stress can reduce the individual’s efficiency. Besides, the
strain can affect the person’s initiative and performance and make the employer
unconcerned with the welfare of other people in the organisation. This problem
occurs when the management allows the subordinates, particularly those engag-
ing in a demanding role, little control over the management and performance of
H. B. Salih
10.4236/jss.2018.68001 5 Open Journal of Social Sciences
the job. The issue is compounded by unsafe working conditions or lack of say in
the organisation. Hence, stress can play an important role in the daily activities
of a worker, but an intense level of the strain may adversely impact the em-
ployee’s operations.
Many organisations have not implemented effective measures to prevent
workplace stress. In the meantime, [15] assert that there is a steady rise in the
prevalence of stress among employees. It is important to notice that many orga-
nisations have comprehensive knowledge of the adverse health impacts of stress.
However, most of them do not implement procedures and policies to address
this issue. In fact, many institutions tend to tackle the problem after facing a se-
rious trigger, such as a reduction in productivity, a rise in the frequency of ab-
senteeism, the enactment of related regulations, or an increase in operational
costs. In order to avoid such adverse effects, organisations should strive to ad-
dress these problems early enough.
An organisation can employ a three-step mechanism to manage the problem
of staff absenteeism arising from stress. Firstly, employers should assess the fac-
tors that are responsible for workplace stress. They can accomplish this goal by
reviewing the set procedures and policies. Secondly, the management should
engage every member of staff in stress management practices to lower the level
of employees’ stress. It should consistently assess the workers’ condition. Lastly,
the administration ought to evaluate the progress of the implemented programs
and processes and make relevant adjustments regularly. This strategy plays an
important role in enhancing future implementations of the appropriate pro-
grams and stress management measures. Nevertheless, businesses must set rea-
listic objectives. Hence, firms should develop strict policies to curb the growing
concern of work absences.
4. Work-Life Balance (WLB) and Staff Absenteeism
Work-life balance focuses on the extent to which employees achieve equal de-
grees of satisfaction and engagement in their personal and social life and work
performance. This factor has a considerable impact on the performance of
people. In particular, individuals who have the capacity to split their time be-
tween their careers and other aspects of life tend to perform better than their
colleagues. A person with a healthy work-life balance assigns a priority to his or
her community duties, household, and work. However, it is exceedingly chal-
lenging for many people to effectively perform these responsibilities. [16] main-
tains that concentrating on the efficient management of job and other personal
matters is an important aspect of WLB. Accordingly, members of the society
who have the capacity to balance their work-life invest their time and energy to
both domains.
An increase in the workload of a worker adversely affects the person’s WLB.
Indeed, people view WLB as the assessment of a worker’s capacity to manage the
work, family, and personal responsibilities effectively. However, “balance” is a
H. B. Salih
10.4236/jss.2018.68001 6 Open Journal of Social Sciences
subjective assessment that differs according to people’s views. For instance, a
person may gain satisfaction from spending more time in the workplace, while
another can appreciate having more time at home. Nonetheless, many scholars
concur that relatively long working hours tend to cause family-work conflict,
which contributes to staff absenteeism [17]. Hence, it is important to assess the
extent of working that adversely impacts the work-life balance among employees
at Wa Municipal Education Office.
5. Purpose of the Study
The purpose of this study is to assess the causes and effects of staff absenteeism
at the Wa Municipal Education Office of the Ghana Education Service. Conse-
quently, it will help in understanding the effects of work absence on routine
work. The findings will enlighten human resource managers on the extent of
employee absenteeism and the measures of reducing its prevalence. In his article,
[18] asserts that scholars ought to conduct comprehensive research on this sub-
ject. Thus, this paper will expand the knowledge of this field by assessing the is-
sue at the Wa Municipal Education Office of the Ghana Education Service as the
case study. The public sector deserves an ample analysis since it offers unique
services to the society. For this reason, the paper will examine the relationship
between workplace absenteeism and service delivery. It is worth mentioning that
scholars have not chosen this place while completing their research. Hence, this
study will provide invaluable insight into the ways of addressing absenteeism in
other municipal education offices in Ghana since they employ a similar struc-
ture. Furthermore, the study will suggest measures for addressing the problem.
The findings may help in enhancing employee productivity and reducing
workplace absenteeism.
6. Significance of the Study
The negative impacts of absenteeism determine the importance of addressing
this problem. Work absences negatively impact business growth, productivity,
and operations [19]. The significance of the study is to assess the causes and ef-
fects of staff absenteeism at the Wa Municipal Education Office of the Ghana
Education Service to make informed recommendations to help solve the prob-
lem of staff absenteeism. The study provides an in-depth assessment of the caus-
es and effects of staff absenteeism at the Wa Municipal Education Office of the
Ghana Education Service. It also examines the structures upon which the Wa
Municipal Education Office of the Ghana Education Service has been built and
the worldview upon which staff absenteeism is founded.
The assessment has revealed how the management of the Wa Municipal Edu-
cation Office of the Ghana Education Service feels about dealing with the prob-
lem of staff absenteeism that seems intractable. The findings will, therefore, not
only be adding to existing knowledge on how to deal with staff absenteeism, but
also provide a pathway for dealing with similar issues elsewhere in the country
H. B. Salih
10.4236/jss.2018.68001 7 Open Journal of Social Sciences
and the world at large.
Researchers assert that workplace absenteeism is a major cause of direct and
indirect costs [19]. Hence, this study is of relevance to Government, Educational
administrators, Non-Governmental Organizations, the General Public and other
stakeholders who are concerned with the sustenance and development of formal
education in society. It is hoped that such stakeholders would take a keen inter-
est in working together to bring about progress and development in state agen-
cies and other agencies with similar backgrounds. Although literature abounds
on employee absenteeism, that of staff absenteeism in state-owned educational
institutions in Ghana is scanty if not virtually non-existent. The findings of this
study are documented to prevent the assessment of the causes and effects of staff
absenteeism at the Wa Municipal Education Office of the Ghana Education Ser-
vice from disappearing into oblivion.
This would also serve as a source of historical knowledge for the staff of the
Wa Municipal Education Office of the Ghana Education Service. In fact, lost
work-time makes it challenging for employers to achieve the objective of an or-
ganisation and attain high productivity levels [1]. In this way, the study also
represents an opportunity to reflect on the lessons gathered from the experiences
of the staff of the Wa Municipal Education Office of the Ghana Education Ser-
vice. Consequently, this study sought to explore beyond the already existing
problems so as to unearth new insights and contribute to the existing body of
knowledge in the area of educational leadership and administration.
7. Research Methodology
Research methodology is an essential element of research because it details the
steps taken in conducting a study. The latter facilitates and positively influences
the discipline being studied. The paradigm, approach, and method are ex-
amined. The rationale behind the appropriate choice of procedures and
processes that were applied to achieve the study objectives is therefore explained.
7.1. Target Population
As of June 2018, the study population consisted of 68 staff of the Wa Municipal
Education Office of the Ghana Education Service (48 male and 20 female). The
age range of the staff was between 38 years and 60 years. Also, the work expe-
rience of the staff was between 15 years to 35 years of work experience. The
sample size was 37 staff (27 male and 10 female). Four of the participants were
the heads of their respective departments, namely the Finance and Administra-
tion Department, Human Resource Department, Planning Department and Su-
pervision Department. While all the 7 management members were purposively
sampled, the other participants were selected through simple random sampling.
Participants were both management and staff. Management of the Wa Munici-
pal Education Office of the Ghana Education Service is made up of the Munici-
pal Director of Education, the four Frontline Deputy Directors and some senior
officials at the Municipal office. The researcher used semi-structured interviews
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10.4236/jss.2018.68001 8 Open Journal of Social Sciences
and a questionnaire to collect data. The researcher also made use of the informa-
tion from the staff attendance register.
7.2. Data Analysis
Data analysis involves the preparation and organisation of data into meaningful
groups, including the search for conceivable patterns and existing relationships.
All item responses were analysed. Data analysis was done based on these re-
search questions:
1) What causes employee absences in the workplaces?
2) What are management’s assessments of staff absences?
3) Are the existing practices for managing absences effective?
4) What are the best measures to address staff absenteeism?
8. Research Results
8.1. Causes of Employee Absences in the Workplaces
When the staff was asked to indicate the reasons behind their last absence from
work, 64% of them noted non-illness related causes. Absenteeism that was ill-
ness-related consisted of physical and mental illnesses. Non-illness reasons in-
cluded personal issues, family issues, stress, practical issues, looking for another
job, and job dissatisfaction. Issues such as child naming ceremony, funeral occa-
sion and attendance at religious as well as traditional festivals are the main caus-
es of non-illness absenteeism of the staff of the Wa Municipal Education Office
of the Ghana Education service. Sickness and stress were also mentioned as
causes of staff absenteeism.
8.2. Management Assessments on Staff Absences
The majority of management considered absenteeism as costly and negatively
affecting the productivity of the organisation. However, only about half of the
total management indicated absenteeism as a serious concern in the workplace
while less than half of staff considered an absence as an issue of concern for the
Wa Municipal Education Office of the Ghana Education Service. It was therefore
revealed that the problem of staff absenteeism was of grave concern to both
management and staff of the Wa Municipal Education office of the Ghana Edu-
cation Service. The study found that 87% of management agreed that absentee-
ism is costly for the organisation (Figure 1).
The 83% of management agreed that absenteeism negatively affects output
(Figure 2). Moreover, 53% of management noted absenteeism as a serious con-
cern in the workplace (Figure 3). Besides, 44% of staff considered absenteeism
as a serious issue in the workplace (Figure 4).
8.3. The Effectiveness of the Existing Absence Management
Staff usually provides medical notes from physicians. However, only 8% of staff
consider it as an adequate absenteeism management practice. It was revealed
H. B. Salih
10.4236/jss.2018.68001 9 Open Journal of Social Sciences
Figure 1. Management consideration on whether absenteeism is costly.
Figure 2. Management’s deduction on the effects of absenteeism on production.
Figure 3
Management’s conclusion about absenteeism in their workplace.
that the existing practice of asking staff to submit a physician note before being
granted permission to go on sick leave is not an effective mechanism for grant-
ing sick leave to staff. Also, the staff attendance book is not closely supervised by
management hence its existence is not of relevance in curbing staff absenteeism
at the Wa Municipal Education office of the Ghana Education Service.
Management generally understands that health and stress issues contribute to
absenteeism, and 87% noted that (Figure 5). Probably a factor, 44% of employees
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10.4236/jss.2018.68001 10 Open Journal of Social Sciences
Figure 4. Staff’s conclusion about absenteeism in the workplace.
Figure 5. Staff’s conclusion on whether health and stress issues contribute to
stated that organisations do not create a wellness-supported environment at
workplaces (Figure 6).
The findings revealed that strategies should be implemented to ensure im-
provement in managing the problem of staff absenteeism at the Wa Municipal
Education Office of the Ghana Education Service. Management should ensure
staff receives enough rest periods for the reduction of fatigue. Also, staff should
consider unauthorised absence as an issue of utmost significance, so as not to
compromise the level of commitment required to control absenteeism. Fur-
thermore, clear and sound workplace policies should manage absenteeism, in-
cluding fair and adequate discipline, which is designed to deter employees and
promote a culture committed to lessening absenteeism.
The findings further revealed that the management of the Wa Municipal
Education office of the Ghana Education Service should ensure that sick leave
regulations and the process of presenting medical notes should be well defined
to eliminate confusion on the necessary actions when needed. Additionally, em-
ployees should be counseled as a precondition to disciplinary action. Consistent
disciplinary measures should be implemented. Moreover, habitual offenders
should face appropriate disciplinary consequences henceforth. Meanwhile,
H. B. Salih
10.4236/jss.2018.68001 11 Open Journal of Social Sciences
Figure 6. The staff’s argument on whether the organisation creates a conducive
working environment.
management should also formulate procedures for investigating absences that
the staff cannot control. Past employee records should be consulted before de-
termining the appropriate course of action. Hence, management should not only
track and measure absenteeism to promote attendance, but also should discuss it
with the employees turning it into a team effort.
9. Conclusions
Staffs of the Wa Municipal Education Office of the Ghana Education service
who are of the habit of absenting themselves from work do that based on
non-illness issues. The main causes of staff absenteeism relates to issues such as
child naming ceremony, funeral occasion and attendance at religious as well as
traditional festivals.
Staff absenteeism at the Wa Municipal Education Office of the Ghana Educa-
tion Service affects the overall work productivity, and, thus, can be regarded as
the antithesis of output since productivity is zero during periods of absence. Al-
though the implication of staff absenteeism on output is inevitable, some institu-
tions may ignore the need to review their management practices.
It is instructive to note that measures put in place to curb staff absenteeism at
the Wa Municipal Education Office of the Ghana Education Service are not ef-
10. Recommendations
Management should isolate predominant causes of absenteeism, identifying legi-
timate incidences, regular offenders, and illegitimate absences enable it to em-
ploy sufficient measures targeting specific factors. Effective policies should be
implemented with the management ensuring that all employees completely un-
derstand such systems. Moreover, the possible repercussions that may follow for
failing to adhere to such policies should be well outlined and explained.
Furthermore, a committee should be made to engage the staff in addressing all
aspects surrounding absenteeism regularly. To ensure that disciplinary records
H. B. Salih
10.4236/jss.2018.68001 12 Open Journal of Social Sciences
and attendance are updated, a timely action should be a priority, enabling man-
agement to make appropriate decisions according to each case of absenteeism.
Attendance incentives should be applied for employees to associate positively for
regularly reporting for duty.
11. Definitions
Staff absenteeism: Unscheduled absence of a person from his or her place of
Productivity: The deliberate conversion of labour, capital, and other input
resources into the required outputs.
Strategies: The assessment and directing of the much-needed resources to
accomplish a specific objective or address a critical issue.
Voluntary absenteeism: The decision of a person to avoid reporting to work
due to unsatisfactory reasons [3].
12. Limitations of the Study
Factors that are beyond the scope of the person conducting a study may impact
the research. For instance, the paper focuses on the Wa Municipal Education
Office of the Ghana Education Service, which constitutes a major limitation.
Scholars argue that a small sample makes it exceedingly difficult to generalise
study outcomes and conclusions to similar settings and situations. In fact, the
research will include the responses of a few employees due to time constraints.
The short time span will make it extremely challenging to interview all respon-
dents and gather the much-needed information. Similarly, the process of ans-
wering all the questions that will be included in the questionnaire may require
much time, particularly if the respondents do not understand the key terms and
concepts. Besides, the limited scope of information regarding the causes and
impacts of absenteeism may affect the findings. Indeed, having a keen interest in
factors that the management of Wa Municipal Education Office can control may
negatively impact data collection. This issue may occur since other factors that
are beyond the scope of the administrators can reduce productivity and the rate
of absenteeism. Importantly, the subjects may fail to express their views on the
topic frankly, which is likely to contribute to response bias. Hence, a number of
factors associated with the scope of the study and the target audience may ad-
versely impact the research findings.
Conflicts of Interest
The authors declare no conflicts of interest regarding the publication of this pa-
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perial Journal of Interdisciplinary Research
, 3, 35-42.
... However, these causative factors vary with individuals, workgroups, workplaces, industries and societies; not every factor has a significant influence in every case (Kim et al., 2017;Bélanger, Edwards & Haiven, 2020). Studies shown that individual behaviours and organisational factors contribute to absenteeism in the workplace (Kristman et al, 2016;Salih, 2018). Individual and lifestyle factors include stress, illness, depression, personal belief in the legitimacy of absent-taking, alcohol or drug abuse, diet, lack of relaxation and exercise, non-scheduled routine activities, sleep deprivation and external responsibilities or personal problems outside of the workplace (Salih, 2018). ...
... Studies shown that individual behaviours and organisational factors contribute to absenteeism in the workplace (Kristman et al, 2016;Salih, 2018). Individual and lifestyle factors include stress, illness, depression, personal belief in the legitimacy of absent-taking, alcohol or drug abuse, diet, lack of relaxation and exercise, non-scheduled routine activities, sleep deprivation and external responsibilities or personal problems outside of the workplace (Salih, 2018). Organisational factors include no policies on absence management, workgroup or department absence culture, lack of motivation, lack of supportive work-life programs, distance from work or transport difficulties, job dissatisfaction, staff bullying or conflicts, excessive workload, nature of work, lack of job-person-fit, increased working hours or overtime and lack of co-worker or supervisory support (Kristman et al, 2016;Bosch et al., 2016). ...
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Hotel staff have been observed to be involved in workload for long hours with few break times, unpredictable shifting and lifting of heavy loads manually. Although these practices have the potential to reduce health and fitness status of staff thereby compromised productivity in hospitality industry and national development, it has, however, not been established whether the job-related activity patterns of the staff of star-rated hotels have implications on their health status and absenteeism factors. In total, 70 staff (48.6% male, 51.4% female, mean age = 24.63 ± 12.06) of star-rated hotels in Kumasi were sampled. International physical activity (IPAQ), health status (HSQ-12) and Koen–Müller’s employee absenteeism questionnaires were administered. About 77.0% spent averagely two hours/day and four days/week on vigorous job-related physical activities (PAs), 90.0% spent averagely four hours/day and five days/week on moderate job-related physical activities (heavy lifting, digging, heavy construction work, climbing upstairs) and spent averagely 1.8 hours/day walking during weekly activity. Job-related activities of the participants correlate significantly with daily vigorous PA (F = 5.625, P-value = 0.000). Participants’ self-reported results showed that vigorous- and moderate-job related activities amounted to good health status. Sleep deprivation, inad-equate rest days, short time with close-knit family predis-posed participants to absenteeism. The significant relationship between health status and absenteeism factors showed 87.2% variability. Participants strongly disagreed to being absent from work due to transport. Job-related activities of star-rated hotels staff are identical with vigorous daily PA, which could be harmful to health. Provision of functional and accessible health-care resources for staffers of star-rated hotels would attenuate unproductive absenteeism.
... Voluntary absences are led by the teachers' direct willingness to not attend a teaching session at school [1]. This type of absenteeism may be a result of job dissatisfaction and a lack of commitment to the institution [5]. The latter is often caused by particular circumstances beyond the control of the teacher, such as illness or discretionary or other conditions such as marriage, mourning and administrative responsibilities [6]- [8]. ...
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In this paper, we present a digital application developed to prevent teachers’ absenteeism in a private university in Indonesia. In particular, we evaluated the development and the application of an Android-based attendance management system (AAMS) to monitor teachers’ attendance and their teaching activity at a private university in the capital city of Jakarta, Indonesia. Adopting a design-based research approach, we observed the development procedure and interviewed three end-users of the application, i.e. teachers. The findings of the study revealed the potential use of AAMS as a digital tool to prevent absenteeism among university teachers. The three main challenges were highlighted during the application of AAMS, including the processing time duration and system error, the reporting and analytics issues, and the input manipulation. Furthermore, a recommendation is offered on the basis of the findings.
Purpose This paper aims to investigate the relationship between job satisfaction and distributive justice on employee perceptions of absence legitimacy. This paper also examined the moderating effects of turnover intentions on the relevant relationships. Design/methodology/approach The authors used convenience sampling to collect data from 298 employees working in private and public sector organizations in the manufacturing and service sectors in Ghana. Drawing on institutional theory, this study investigates the effects of employee perceptions of the legitimacy of absenteeism on their attitudes toward their job and pay. Structural equation modeling was used to test the direct and moderation effects. Findings Job satisfaction and perceived distributive justice were found to be significantly related to the absence of legitimacy. Additionally, turnover intentions moderated the relationship between job satisfaction and absence legitimacy; however, unexpectedly, this was associated only marginally with distributive justice. Research limitations/implications The main limitation of this study was that it was cross-sectional, but the analysis did not show a common method bias. This study was conducted in a developing country where valid and accurate absence data are non-existent. The hypotheses were supported. When employees felt a sense of inequity and were dissatisfied with their jobs, they were likely to perceive absenteeism as legitimate behavior. These relationships were more pronounced when employees intended to leave their organizations. Practical implications From a practical standpoint, as employees are likely to engage in absenteeism as a means to reduce their perceptions of imbalance and because absenteeism is a costly behavior, it would be in the employer’s best interest to mitigate these high costs. It behooves employers to comprehend the factors that lead to the legitimization of absences. Doing so, they would be able to implement attendance management systems and strategies that would delegitimize some of these factors, thus improving attendance and potentially increasing productivity and job satisfaction and reducing turnover intentions. Originality/value This study contributes to absenteeism research because, unlike most studies in the area, it examined employee cognitions of the behavior. Such cognitions should provide insights into how employee perceptions of the legitimacy of absences would affect attitudinal variables such as job satisfaction, feelings of equity and turnover intentions. Moreover, even though the study was conducted in Ghana, absence legitimacy can be investigated in different settings at different levels of analysis. This is because it is free from contamination such as, dissimilar absence reporting systems within and across organizations and nations that affect the validity and accuracy of absence data.
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As the age of the 9 to 5 workday comes to close and employment situations become more and more complex with the rise of ever-growing technology, employers are experiencing ever-increasing costs of absenteeism. The purpose of this research paper is to answer the general question of how absenteeism affects a company’s productivity, efficiency, and profitability. We seek to assist a company in understanding what absenteeism is, how to determine whether or not an absenteeism problem exists in the company, and how to recognize and eliminate issues related to absenteeism. Specific causes of absenteeism will be discussed, along with respective solutions that some companies are using to deal with these issues. We will conclude with a consideration of how companies can implement specific, company-wide policies and organizational culture to attempt to combat absenteeism in the workplace.
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Although the potential deleterious effects of negative social interactions at work have been well established in the literature, the impact of personal factors in forming work relationships has been relatively neglected. Therefore, using a survey of 1624 Canadian healthcare providers, we examined the extent to which attachment styles at work were associated with the quality of social relationships. We found support for a new measure of attachment styles at work that differentiated between anxiety and avoidance attachment. Avoidance was negatively correlated with positive social constructs (civility, psychological safety, and trust) and with the efficacy dimension of burnout. Overall, compared to attachment avoidance, attachment anxiety was more strongly correlated with experienced and instigated workplace incivility, exhaustion, and cynicism. Attachment avoidance was negatively correlated with positive social constructs (civility, psychological safety, and trust) and with the efficacy dimension of burnout. Adding these two attachment dimensions to a model of burnout as a function of workload, value congruence, and coworker incivility significantly improved its fit. This study suggests that employees with high attachment anxiety tend to be more closely involved in work relationships and processes, but this closeness comes at a cost in that they experience more strain when participating in social encounters.
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Objective To evaluate the association of absenteeism due to sickness with sociodemographic characteristics and relate it to the work of nursing professionals. Method Descriptive exploratory study that analyzed medical certificates of up to 15 days off work presented by 994 nurses at a university hospital. The data source was the frequency system of the institution. Results Most workers were female, married and technical nurses. The average age was 41.9 years and a third worked in adult inpatient services. Of the 994 professionals, 645 had at least one sick day. Conclusion Absenteeism due to illness is complex and multifactorial. The factors associated with it were: age group, education, function, shift, time in the institution and workplace.
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The contribution of inadequate health worker numbers and emigration have been highlighted in the international literature, but relatively little attention has been paid to absenteeism as a factor that undermines health-care delivery in low income countries. We therefore aimed to review the literature on absenteeism from a health system manager's perspective to inform needed work on this topic. Specifically, we aimed to develop a typology of definitions that might be useful to classify different forms of absenteeism and identify factors associated with absenteeism. Sixty-nine studies were reviewed, only four were from sub-Saharan Africa where the human resources for health crisis is most acute. Forms of absenteeism studied and methods used vary widely. No previous attempt to develop an overarching approach to classifying forms of absenteeism was identified. A typology based on key characteristics is proposed to fill this gap and considers absenteeism as defined by two key attributes, whether it is: planned/unplanned, and voluntary/involuntary. Factors reported to influence rates of absenteeism may be broadly classified into three thematic categories: workplace and content, personal and organizational and cultural factors. The literature presents an inconsistent picture of the effects of specific factors within these themes perhaps related to true contextual differences or inconsistent definitions of absenteeism.
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We use monthly data from 25 production units in a German steel plant over the period 1992 to 2001 to test for impacts of teamwork and performance-related pay on productivity, acci- dents and absence rates. We find that teamwork and performance pay incentivize workers to in- crease quantity at the expense of quality and to run the machines for long hours instead of spend- ing time on maintenance. We also find that the application of performance pay increases the like- lihood of a day or more being lost due to an accident but this effect is eradicated when teamwork is combined with performance pay. Absenteeism increases when there is a combination of team- work and performance pay. Our results suggest that teamwork and performance pay can create hidden costs for manufacturers and do not necessarily help to raise worker productivity.
2017 Research Leap/Inovatus Services Ltd. All rights reserved. This study seeks to validate the fact that there is a problem of absenteeism amongst employees in different workplaces and analyzes the impact of a persistent absenteeism by employees on the organization. Employees can be absent at work for various reasons or just deciding to be rebellious as a sign of registering some concerns especially associated with job dissatisfaction in the workplace. Absenteeism in the workplace is catastrophic as it hinders performance and results. Organisations, therefore, should put mechanisms in place that would be geared towards curbing this rampant attitude that should not be entertained. The researcher in this article, based on a narration and assembly of several kinds of literature, explore and expound the types of absenteeism and what influences employees to stay away from work as well as solution to arrest the situation. There is a need for management to countermeasure issues of absenteeism because they impact negatively to the finances, an image of the organization and derail progress too. A qualitative approach was considered when compiling this paper in order to analyse the topic.
Studies exploring a wide range of psychosocial work factors separately and together in association with long sickness absence are still lacking. The objective of this study was to explore the associations between psychosocial work factors measured following a comprehensive instrument (Copenhagen psychosocial questionnaire, COPSOQ) and long sickness absence (>7 days/year) in European employees of 34 countries. An additional objective was to study the differences in these associations according to gender and countries. The study population consisted of 16 120 male and 16 588 female employees from the 2010 European working conditions survey. Twenty-five psychosocial work factors were explored. Statistical analysis was performed using multilevel logistic regression models and interaction testing. When studied together in the same model, factors related to job demands (quantitative demands and demands for hiding emotions), possibilities for development, social relationships (role conflicts, quality of leadership, social support, and sense of community), workplace violence (physical violence, bullying, and discrimination), shift work, and job promotion were associated with long sickness absence. Almost no difference was observed according to gender and country. Comprehensive prevention policies oriented to psychosocial work factors may be useful to prevent long sickness absence at European level.
PurposeIn a 2011 survey sponsored by the American Nurses Association (ANA), nurses identified the acute and chronic effects of stress and overwork as one of their two top safety and health concerns. Design/MethodsA review of the literature was conducted to investigate the impact that job stress has on the health and safety of nursing professionals and the role that working conditions and job characteristics play in fostering job stress. FindingsStrong evidence supporting links between job stress, safety and health in general and within different types of nursing populations exists. Working conditions also contribute to the development of job stress. Conclusion Combining and integrating person-focused strategies designed to build nurses' ability to manage stress at the individual level with organization-focused strategies that eliminate stressful working conditions is critical to the reduction and prevention of job stress among nursing professionals.
A significant amount of work time is lost each year due to worker absence, but evidence on the productivity losses from absenteeism remains scant due to difficulties with identification. In this paper, we use uniquely detailed data on the timing, duration, and cause of absences among teachers to address many of the potential biases from the endogeneity of worker absence. Our analysis indicates that worker absences have large negative impacts: the expected loss in daily productivity from employing a temporary substitute is on par with replacing a regular worker of average productivity with one at the 10th–20th percentile of productivity. We also find daily productivity losses decline with the length of an absence spell, consistent with managers engaging in costly search for more productive substitutes and temporary workers learning on the job. While illness is a major cause of absenteeism among teachers, we find no evidence that poor health also causes lower on-the-job productivity.Institutional subscribers to the NBER working paper series, and residents of developing countries may download this paper without additional charge at
Absenteeism is a major cause of loss in jobs, man-hours, productivity, and lives in the health sector. It also has grave consequences for global economies. To determine the overall absenteeism rate and the factors that conduces to absenteeism among hospital workers. Cross sectional descriptive type. The entire staff in the hospital was enlisted in the study and data were collected through self-administered and semi-structured questionnaire. Fifty three percent of the 474 respondents reported at least one absence spell in the year. Absenteeism was highest among domestic staff (70.8%) and lowest among the doctors (46.9%). The average number of spells per absentee per year was 1.7 and the average duration of spells was 4.1 days while the incapacity rate was 7.2 days. The overall absenteeism rate was 1.7%. Absenteeism was significantly associated with increasing age (p=0.000), gender, [females<males (p=0.001)] and with marital status [married<unmarried (p= 0.02)]. Higher rates of absenteeism were recorded among staffs who were stressed (92.1%), not satisfied with the working environment (66.7%) and those who experienced job dissatisfaction (64%). Engagement in physical activities impacted positively on absenteeism (p=0.02). Ill health accounted for 54.6% of absenteeism, with the bulk of it (67.5%) due to malaria Though the overall absenteeism rate (1.7) was lower than the level of 4 considered to be excessive, 53% of the study population had been absent from work at least once in the study year. There is therefore the need to improve on the social and physical work environment in order to reduce absenteeism among these workers.