Attendance Incentives - Are They Worth It?

Posted by Pacific Timesheet on Jan 14, 2014 7:00:00 AM

Employee absences and tardiness are costly to the business and can have a detrimental effect on overall productivity. Additionally, employee absenteeism can often be viewed as a gauge in determining employee morale. A survey conducted by CCH found that over half of the time an employee calls in sick, they're faking. With so much risk involved, many employers are turning to employee incentive programs, but do they really work? The answer is yes, as long as the incentives are tailored to your company and its employees. While these programs carry some disadvantages, such as time and expense, the overall advantages resulting from a successful attendance incentive program can easily outweigh them. 

Incentives that work best are ones that are valued by your employees. We have compiled a list of the top five incentive programs that can be tailored to suit individual businesses and boost attendance.

Early Release

Giving your employee an hour or two off every Friday for perfect, productive attendance the rest of the week is beneficial to everyone. An employee faking an entire sick day with no increase in attendance or productivity the rest of the week comes at a cost to all involved.

Gift Cards

Gift cards are a popular tangible incentive, offering the employee a chance to purchase something they want and have the company pick up the tab. 

Cashing In

This type of incentive program allows employees to “cash in” unused sick time at the end of a specified time period. Unused time can be traded for a monetary bonus, increased time off or for tangible goods such as a gift card.

Bonus Pay

Simply put, for periods of perfect attendance employees gain a bonus in a predetermined amount.


While not technically an attendance incentive, flextime scheduling can help improve overall attendance since employees have partial control over their work schedule. A flextime policy allows for some standard work hours and leaves the remainder to be determined by the employee. For example, an employee might be required to work in the office from the hours of 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., while the employee can determine the rest of their work schedule according to what best suits their needs. As long as specific objectives are met, this variable work schedule can be beneficial to all.

Forming the right attendance incentives for your business involves taking a few things into consideration, such as the type of incentives that will be both cost effective and of value to your employees, the length of time between incentives and the manner in which incentives are doled out. Allowing employees to contribute ideas and provide feedback to help structure incentive programs can prove beneficial. With proper planning, employers can create a successful attendance incentive program.



By Gooutside (Own work) [Public domain],

Topics: Time and Attendance Software

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