5 Excuses Every HR Manager has heard for Absent People

BY Judah Hirsch Attendance

5 Excuses Every HR Manager has heard for Absent People

As an HR manager, one of the most critical jobs is monitoring employee attendance. The data should always be accurately recorded as it will affect a huge part of your work in keeping the payroll system up-to-date without misses. And just like for everything else, nothing is perfect and you can guarantee yourself that someone will be absent – whether it’s planned or unplanned.

Five Commonly Used Excuses You’ll Hear

For every absence, there is an excuse that will cover for it. It may be real or not, but for sure, you’ve heard them all. Let’s have a bit of fun and enumerate the five commonly used excuses employees use so that they can skip work even just for a few hours.

“I’ve earned it.”

You’ll have great performers in the workplace that will make all the tasks a priority. They’d go to work early and they’ll come home late just because they want to get things done right away. When all is done, one may find the perfect time to call it a rest day and ask for a day off in advance.

There’s nothing too much to analyze here. It’s just they want to take the day off and they know it won’t ruin the whole office productivity since they’re already done.

“I have a meeting outside the office.”

Off-site meetings aren’t uncommon especially if the sales employees often need to meet clients in a golf course, a restaurant, or in another office. But you should also keep track on these meetings’ duration as a half-day meeting may turn the other half as leisure time for the employee; making the extra hours for work turn to waste and it can delay the tasks that should be completed right away.

“I’m going to see a doctor.”

Each employee’s health is indeed needed to be checked once in a while especially if they haven’t been feeling great in the past few days. You can’t, however, avoid some using the same excuse, which can be actually true or unfortunately, just a way to escape work.

When an employee has a scheduled medical appointment, advise him/her to better do it early in the morning before work or late in the afternoon if it’s possible.

“I have menstrual cramps.”

You probably know how badly menstrual cramps can ruin an employee’s concentration and work. Most of the time, hard-working employees will try their best to relieve the pain. But when she already asks to take the day off, take her word for it. Just be sure that she’s not doing it every week.

“I’ve got an emergency.”

Well, what kind of emergency? If it’s a real sudden unfortunate event such as a house fire, a pipe burst, or a sick child the parent employee has to look at, then you know it can’t be helped. However, in some cases where the employee needs to be home to wait for a repairman or for some important delivery, then you can ask him/her to work from home if possible.

Effects of Absenteeism

Absenteeism isn’t only going to affect the whole payroll system and the work results on that day, but it’ll leave you and the office with greater impact including:

  • Unfair payment to absent employees.
  • Reduced productivity.
  • More work for the other employees.
  • More overtime pay the office has to provide
  • Conflict between employees
  • Disruption to the normal work schedule of employees
  • Encourages chronic absenteeism among other employees
  • Delays on fulfilling employee’s growth

Moreover, this also means additional work for you in calculating those overtime hours and organizing a poorly performing workplace.

Ways to Avoid Employees Skipping Work

You don’t want to continue hearing those for sure. So in order to avoid these excuses to be used just to skip working, here are the simple things you can do:

Let everyone know about the absence policy.

There’s a policy, right? Be sure that everyone is informed about it and don’t forget to implement it.

Communication between managers and staff

Keep an eye on the holidays and the seasons that will most likely encourage employees to be absent to know if it’s realistic to dot every date with loads of projects. Be realistic and make work flexible to match everyone’s ideal schedule.

Give incentives

Make employees aim to have a perfect attendance by providing bonuses.

It’s surely best to trust the employees and be understanding when it comes to these rare occasions when they need to be away from work. However, if your mind is already telling you that someone is doing too much of those “personal emergency” excuses and the likes, it’s time to act and talk to that employee.

The best advice is to always remember to keep track on employees’ attendance. For an easy and a straightforward way of calculating time, attendance, and payroll; have a payroll platform that can automatically do the tracking and calculations for you.

Signup now to keep informed of the latest HR and payroll trends.
Subscribe to our newsletter Here



Excel is exhausting; Go for effortless attendance & Payroll!.

Try Salarium for FREE today.

Start your Free Trial