B usinesses should allow adequate sick time for employees and develop appropriate policies to prevent presenteeism. It doesn't cost the company as much as it saves, as much as $8.2 billion net per year nationally for just 7 paid sick days per year. Most private industry workers and low-wage employees are not allowed any paid sick time.
Presenteeism costs more than absenteeism, about 60% of the total cost for sick employees. Not only is the productivity of the sick employee decreased, they contaminate the workplace and infect coworkers, clients, and customers. In some industries a sick food handler or caregiver can be a disaster for that employee's company.
If a company can't fund the costs for time off, or can't see the benefits of having healthy productive employees, then that company has no business being in business. In 2004 Tufts-New England Medical Center conducted a productivity study of 28 medical conditions at Lockheed Martin Corp. Sick employees cost the company $34 million, $1.8 million for allergies and sinus problems alone.
Unfortunately, many companies resort to disciplinary action when an employee misses work which only encourages presenteeism and hurts the company's bottom line.
Dr. Marc Tinsley is a health, fitness, and wellness expert who works with organizations who want to stop losing money and be more productive by taking better care of themselves and their members. He takes the fear, difficulty, mystery, and confusion out of health, wellness, and fitness with keynotes, breakouts, workshops, in-services, teleseminars, webinars, coaching, and consulting.