Absenteeism has become a significant problem across industries and organizations. In fact, in January 2022, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that almost 8 million employees miss work yearly due to medical appointments, illness, or injury. And with the rise of hybrid workplaces today, the question of whether or not to track employee absence becomes even more complicated. What is Employee Absence? Absenteeism is when an employee misses work. However, it shouldn’t be mixed with vacation or personal days. Team member absences can be due to unavoidable circumstances, such as illness or injury, the need to run errands, and family-related concerns, among others. And in some cases, it could also be due to stress and burnout. While it’s usually common for a team member to miss work once in a while, excessive absences can be worrying. That’s where tracking employee absences can come in handy. Why Track Employee Absence? There are many reasons to track team member absences. Some of these reasons include: Identify Trends In Employee Absence By tracking employee absence, you can determine if certain departments or employees have higher absenteeism rates than others. With such insights, you’ll more or less be able to identify a pattern or trend in your organization. From there, you can further investigate if the frequent absences among your employees are because of personal reasons or perhaps work-related stress and burnout due to the hybrid work setup. You can conduct surveys to do this. The data you gather can then help you come up with solutions to manage absence patterns in your team efficiently. Increase Organizational Productivity Part of increasing the productivity in your company is boosting your employees’ performance. However, you may not achieve this if there are frequent absences among your team members. This is how tracking employee absence can be to your advantage. When you track employee absences, it’ll allow you to see who is consistently absent and who is rarely absent. In a way, it can also help you gain a better understanding of why your team members aren’t showing up to work. This can help you identify which employees may need additional support, especially with a hybrid work setup. From there, you can roll out programs to offer support to your employees. For example, if data shows employees are missing work because they don’t feel safe at work, you can offer them additional security measures. Or, if you notice that they are missing work because they’re feeling stressed about deadlines, you can provide them with more resources to help them meet their goals or come up with solutions to manage and distribute workload better. While tracking your employees’ attendance seems tedious, the insights you can gain can be valuable in helping you identify areas for improvement in your workforce and various processes or workflow in your organization. And by determining patterns in absences among team members, you can better plan programs and develop new policies that can help boost productivity, which can benefit you and your team members. And with various technological innovations, such a task can be made easier and more convenient by using an employee absence tracker. What Is An Employee Absence Tracker? In a nutshell, an employee absence tracker is software designed to collect and analyze data related to employee attendance. It can collect data from multiple sources, including email and phone calls. With the right tools such as this, you can easily manage, store, monitor, and analyze all aspects of employee absence. How To Use An Employee Absence Tracker An employee absence tracker is generally easy and straightforward to use. Here are some tips to help you get started: 1. Choose And Setup A Tracking Platform The first step in setting up an employee absence tracker is choosing a platform that can meet your company’s needs and preferences. Generally, there are several options available today, but to maximize its benefits, it’s essential to opt for one that suits your operations best. Here are some examples: Web-Based Software: One of the simplest options is web-based software. All you need is a computer and Internet access. In such a case, there’s no need to install an application on the computer since it generally runs on the web browser, powered by an internet connection. This means you can access it anywhere and anytime as long as you’re connected to the internet. Desktop Software: Compared to web-based software, desktop applications are required to be installed on the computer’s system for it to run. And in most cases, each software is designed to run on a specific computer operating system. Mobile App: Mobile apps are generally more convenient as they allow you to track employee absences on smartphones and tablets. They are easy to set up and install. They’re also easy to navigate and use. Cloud-Based Software: Cloud-based software offers many benefits over other tracking systems. The main advantage is that it’s scalable. That means you can add users without having to buy more hardware. Plus, it has built-in backup features. So, even if something happens to your system, you won’t lose any data. 2. Enter Employee Data And Attendance Once you choose the software, you will need to configure it. Configuring the software involves entering details about your company and employees. Once configured, the software will begin tracking employee absences automatically. You can have the option to view reports which can include employee absences, missed appointments, late arrivals, and tardiness. You can also customize your team member absence reports to suit your preferences. For instance, you can opt for a calendar view, wherein you can have a dashboard showing a full-month calendar. It lists each day and indicates whether the employee was present or absent. You can also opt for a more detailed dashboard, wherein you can view the daily timesheet of a team member. You can get information on their start and end time, or if they’re absent, the reason for their absence. 3. Generate Report For Analysis Depending on your management preference, you can generate weekly, monthly, quarterly, or annual reports on team member attendance and absence. Such a report can provide a summary of team member absences. It can display the total number of days absent in a given time frame. From there, you can gain better insight into who had the highest absenteeism rate, which department tends to display a pattern, and which months suffered the lowest attendance. 4. Manage Employees’ Absences With such critical information at your disposal, you can be in a better position to analyze your team’s performance and determine whether or not an intervention is needed to avoid further loss in productivity and business revenue. You can also use such insights to devise strategies to help boost employee morale, especially in a hybrid work setup. You can do this through various methods. For example, you can give out rewards to those with good attendance records. Or, you can implement a flexible working schedule so that employees can have the option to perform their duties and complete their deadlines anytime and anywhere. Benefits Of Using An Employee Absence Tracker Using an employee absence tracker can benefit your organization in numerous ways. Here are some of those benefits: · Improved Productivity When you track team member absences, you can improve productivity. By knowing when employees are missing work, you can take steps to ensure that they don’t miss too much work and prevent your team from getting behind on projects and missing deadlines. · Reduced Costs A missing team member means more tasks left undone. You can plan accordingly when you know how many hours a team member has been absent. This way, you won’t have to spend extra resources to make up for the loss in productivity due to their absence. · Increased Customer Satisfaction Customer satisfaction is one thing that cannot be compromised. With an employee absence tracker, you can keep tabs on the availability of your team members. This way, you’ll be able to deliver high-quality services and products to your customers without delays since you can minimize understaffed instances. · Increased Efficiency You can also increase efficiency using an employee absence tracker for hybrid workplaces. The best part about using an employee absence tracker is that it allows you to get a clear picture of your team’s efficiency. If you notice certain team members consistently missing work, you can address the issue by implementing flexible working schedules or remote working options. · Decreased Turnover And Increased Retention Rates Employees who are unhappy at their current workplace may leave. And with employee absence tracking software, you can get insights into your staff’s well-being. For instance, if they’re prone to taking the day off, it can be an indication of a concern that needs to be addressed. Using the data from the employee absences tracker, you can create programs that offer support to your team members. You can also come up with incentives to show appreciation for your employees’ hard work. With such efforts, they can feel valued. Note that employees who feel valued will generally be encouraged to stay longer. · Properly Scheduled Leave Days Lastly, as a manager, you’ll have a better overview of when your staff will be on leave. As a result, your department can be better prepared to transfer and delegate workload from the team members on leave. Final Thoughts Using an employee absence tracker can help your business grow and thrive by helping you manage your workforce efficiently. Absence trackers can also help you reduce costs, increase customer satisfaction, and increase your organization’s overall productivity. If you haven’t yet started using an employee absence tracker, now is the time to do so.