What is absence rate?

Absence rate

Absence rate is a measure of unplanned time off due to unforeseen causes, like sickness, bereavement, or family leave. Absence rate can be measured at individual, team, or organizational levels.

Why is absence rate important to measure?

Absence rate gives HR leaders and managers important insight into both the general health and well-being of their employees and overall levels of absence within the company, which can help with operational decisions. For example, if an individual has an excessive absence rate, it might enable the HR team to start a conversation and provide help if needed. If a team has an excessive absence rate it could be a sign of collective burnout, and knowing could help prompt management to find a solution, like hiring more people for that team.

How do you calculate absence rate?

Absence rate is usually calculated as the number of absence days divided by the number of working days in a given period. Most HRIS software will calculate absence rate for you.

There are also other methods of calculating absence rate. The Bradford Factor, for example, attributes higher significance to short, frequent absences than to longer periods of absence.

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