Speaking to staff early is vital with managing absence at work. If they are too ill to consider a return to work, knowing that they are being thought of at work is a boost in itself.
Managers are busy people and this can be seen as yet another job, yet the time spent talking to absent staff can be the most rewarding both financially and personally. But managers need help!
Employees should also be encouraged to take an active part in the process of their return to work, after all they will best understand what it is that is needed to help them overcome the barriers preventing them at the moment.
Colleagues can often feel frustrated, angry or just plain confused as to what is happening when someone is away sick. By using effective communication and without breaking the absent employees confidentiality, staff can be kept up to date with what is going on and what will be expected of them during the return to work period.
This can be particularly important around mental health problems, when the sick employee may struggle to discuss what has happened to them.