Improved internal communication reduces absenteeism

Heidi Heinhold

Absenteeism from work is not only caused by illness but also by stress in the workplace. Promoting employees´identification with the company is a successful therapy in this case.

Absenteeism from work is not only caused by illness but also by stress in the workplace, aggravated communication between colleagues, or between supervisors and those they are in charge of; psychosomatic problems (depression and anxiety) and psychosocial stress. This has been confirmed once more by a study carried out in a medium-sized company.

It is important to promote employees’ identification with the company they work for and therefore to increase job satisfaction. The above-mentioned study achieved a reduction of absenteeism by 12% through the introduction of these measures:
Regular departmental meetings that were reported to those in charge
Discussion of workflow that promote communication, co-operation and participation amongst employees
Redesign of blackboards and deciding who is responsible for the upkeep of such means of communication
Sending out the company newsletter to the employees’ home addresses
Including and informing the lowest level of management - including foremen - though the distribution of press reviews, updates from senior management etc.
Putting up suggestion/complaints boxes that can be used anonymously - with information addressed to the management
Assessment of line managers and superiors by those they oversee.

It is impossible to ascertain whether improved communication was the only reason for the reduction of absenteeism from work. However, overall, the work climate improved and employees’ identification with the company increased.
Report: Heidi Heinhold


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