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Developing A Classifier Of Relevant Causes Of Absenteeism In An Organisation

Table 1:

No. Causes of absence from the workplace Specific description of the cause
1. Maternity leave, upbringing of children, stable marriage Absenteeism related to children starts with the birth of a child, and that is only the beginning (Kocakulah et al., 2016). The family situation influencing the decision whether to go to work or not depends on the number of children. Family size positively correlates with absence from work, especially for women (Bierla et al., 2013). The value of women’s absence from work is higher as compared to men. According to a popular hypothesis, it is the result of gender segregation on the labour market and consequent differences in employment and working conditions (Melsom & Mastekaasa, 2018). Over 75% of working women have school-aged children, while an average American mother misses nine working days a year taking care of children. Employees with children are more often sick at work. As compared to typical families with two parents, single-parent families require childcare twice as often. The possibility of most problems related to work, including absenteeism, is twice or thrice higher for parents with children who have behavioural issues or serious chronic diseases. The value of women’s absence from work is higher as compared to men, and the value of short-term absence is especially high for women with small children. When women return to work soon after childbirth (in the USA a quarter of all women return to work in an organisation within 10 days after childbirth), their performance decreases, and they spend less time socialising with their children. This complicates the possibilities for breastfeeding and increases the risk of post-natal depression. The situation often leads to higher rates of sicknesses and hospital admission of infants, which costs billions of dollars every year (Wojcicki, 2014).Growing children require development, so parents have to take them to sports, music, art, language, and other schools and to participate in parents' committees. Parents also visit doctors with their child and undergo periodic health examination, so this causes absenteeism and presenteeism.
2. Taking care of elderly parents and relatives, other family problems Due to increased life expectancy, children have to take more and more responsibility for the life and health of their elderly parents and relatives. This often causes a “sandwich syndrome”, when an employee simultaneously performs the role of an intermediary between children and grandchildren on one side and parents on the other side. Over 44 million Americans take care of a family member or a family friend aged 18 or older. Many of them prefer not to send their elderly parents to a nursing home and take care of them at home (Kocakulah et al., 2016). Doctor’s visits, medical examinations, purchase of medication, hospital admissions, and frequent phone calls during work limit an employee’s working time. As a result, employees are absent from work for whole days or for a part of the day and perform their work in a state of anxiety.Absenteeism can also be caused by an unstable marriage or the process of divorce. Divorce takes up a lot of free time intended for rest from work and causes psychological distress. Divorce settlements may last for years and requires multiple appearances in court. Each appearance in court requires a full working day or a half of it, and this time off work is often registered as a leave of absence or unpaid leave.Among other causes are life circumstances that prevent students from going to school or university (Birioukov, 2016), poor health as a parameter of “involuntary behaviour” within absenteeism (Johns & Al Hajj, 2016), situations of “alternative social costs” of work when family and friends are enjoying their free time accompanied by absence from work.
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