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Employees come to work despite being ill, this is known as presenteeism. This phenomenon can have a negative impact on productivity, the employee's health and the general working environment. Factors such as high workload, fear of negative consequences of absence and insufficient job security often influence presenteeism.

Causes of presenteeism

Various causes can lead to presenteeism. Fear of losing one's job or of negative consequences such as criticism or lack of promotion opportunities is a major reason. It is possible that employees also work during an illness for financial reasons. In addition, a lack of flexibility in working hours and an unfavorable working atmosphere can encourage presenteeism in the workplace. Employers need to be aware that presenteeism can lead to increased costs and reduced productivity in the long term.

Effects of presenteeism

Presenteeism can have a negative impact on both the employee and the company. Employees who work despite being ill are at a higher risk of a longer recovery time, deteriorating health and infecting their colleagues. This could lead to an increase in the sickness rate in the company. Presenteeism can reduce productivity at company level, affect the quality of work and reduce employee satisfaction. Presenteeism can also lead to increased healthcare costs for the company in the long term.

Ways to reduce presenteeism

It is important to create a corporate culture that promotes the health and well-being of employees in order to reduce presenteeism. Measures such as flexibility in working hours, clear policies on incapacity and a supportive working environment can make this possible. It is important that managers set the example and clearly demonstrate that it is acceptable to stay at home when you are ill. Providing training on self-care and health awareness can also help to reduce presenteeism.

Legal aspects of presenteeism

Occupational health and safety legislation in the European Union and Switzerland requires employers to ensure the health and safety of their employees in the workplace. This also includes measures to prevent presenteeism. Employees have the right to recover in the event of illness and should not be forced to go to work sick. Employers can suffer legal consequences if these provisions are breached. It is therefore important that companies comply with health and safety legislation and take measures to prevent presenteeism.