Can an employer really do anything to reduce absenteeism? Apparently, yes.

About half of the employers that say they have tried to do something about absenteeism believe the efforts have helped. 

Analysts at Guardian Life Insurance Company of America have published that finding in a summary of results from a survey they conducted in an effort to develop absence management recommendations.

The sample included 934 U.S. employers with at least 50 employees that offered medical insurance and some form of disability insurance.

About 801 of the employers reported that they had made major or minor efforts to reduce absenteeism.

The percentage of employers reporting positive outcomes for a tactic was 51 percent to 52 percent for enhancing productivity, reducing lost time and improving employee experience.

About 45 percent said absence management efforts had reduced overall absenteeism.

Only 40 percent reported that absence management efforts had increased return-to-work rates for workers out on disability leave, but a relatively high percentage of the survey participants — 20 percent — said they did not know how absence management efforts had affected return-to-work rates.

The Guardian also developed a system for rating employers on absence management activity on a scale of 1 to 10. The analysts found that the average rating was just 3.

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