Absenteeism cost Canadian economy more than $16 billion in 2012
OTTAWA, Oct. 8, 2013 /CNW/ - Absenteeism is a business issue for
Canadian organizations —it decreases productivity substantially in
their workplaces and in the economy as a whole. Organizations can limit
the negative effects of absent workers by implementing an effective
disability management program. A new Conference Board of Canada publication outlines how employers can institute comprehensive workplace disability
management programs to help control health-related costs.
"There is a solid business case for implementing a disability management
program in the workplace," said Louise Chenier, Senior Research Associate. "In 2011-12, absenteeism cost Canadian
organizations an average of 2.4 per cent of gross payroll. This may
seem like an insignificant amount at first, but it adds up to an
overall loss of more than $16.6 billion to the Canadian economy."
Absenteeism takes many forms, ranging from casual absences—employees off
with minor illnesses lasting one or a few days—to longer leaves of
A disability management program must focus on health promotion and
disability prevention, and on helping employees return to work after
In 2011-12, the average direct cost of workplace absenteeism in Canada
was $16.6 billion.
The Conference Board study, Creating an Effective Workplace Disability Management Program, outlines the common elements of successful programs, which include:
a focus on disability prevention and health promotion;
a commitment to the safe and timely return to work of employees on
health-related leaves of absence; and
an organizational approach that sustains the objectives of the
disability management program.
This publication is the second of a three-part series. The first
publication, Missing in Action—Absenteeism Trends in Canadian Organizations, was released in September.
The third publication, Disability Management: Opportunities for Employer Action, provides advice and guidance for organizations to more effectively
manage absenteeism. These findings will be presented on October 28-29
in Toronto at the Conference Board event, Disability Management and Benefits 2013: Driving Productivity with
Effective Workplace Practices.
The Conference Board, in partnership with Sun Life Financial, Cira
Medical Services, and Acclaim Ability Management Inc., will be
launching a series of workshops to highlight effective strategies and best practices for employers in
the areas of disability management, accommodation, and return to work.
This research was funded by Morneau Shepell, Sun Life Financial, Centric
Health, Banyan Work Health Solutions, Sanofi Canada, and The Conference
Board of Canada's Canadian Alliance for Sustainable Health Care
SOURCE: Conference Board of Canada
For further information:
Yvonne Squires, Media Relations, Tel.: 613- 526-3090 ext. 221