Health concerns have been a dominant issue for businesses around the globe of late. Whether employees have been testing positive for Covid-19 and having to self-isolate, or hitting the wall through burnout due to universal stressors, the impact on staffing has been pervasive—and many employees have found themselves scrambling to know what to do, leading to both cases of presenteeism and employee malingering alike.
While the very necessary navigation of absences due to the coronavirus is a challenge that must unavoidably be risen to, the abandonment of strong employee policy should not become a peripheral cost. Both presenteeism and employee malingering can drive damaging effects that any business would struggle to recover from. Here, we will explore why—no matter how unusual the circumstances—these issues shouldn’t fall from your radar, as well as how corporate investigation services can help you to course-correct when things have already gone awry.
Presenteeism: The Unseen Drain on Resources
Presenteeism can be defined as the act of choosing to go to work when you’re sick or chronically unwell. A more old-school mode of thought might not see a problem—or may even encourage this behavior—but research tells us that presenteeism triggers a domino of effects that wouldn’t be welcome within any organization. Perhaps more relevant to today’s sporadic work-from-home policies, is a growing trend for presenteeism during teleworking: a phenomenon that is far harder to monitor.
Within an office setting—or any shared workplace—the results of presenteeism span far beyond an employee exhibiting low-value performance or costly errors in judgment. It has also been found to correlate with increased longer-term sick leave, stress-related absences, and mental health problems among employees. It should also be considered a possible canary, pointing to an erosion of corporate culture, sapped morale, and overburdened staff. Looking to the struggles faced during the present pandemic, it’s also worth noting that presenteeism tends to rise when layoffs are anticipated.
The Malignant Spread of Malingering
Just about everyone finds themselves battling a health challenge at some point in their careers, and employers have a duty of care to support their team through illness, until they are able to get back on track. However, a small number of nefarious characters see opportunity in feigned illness, and may take up malingering as a way to avoid performing their duties or coming to work at all.
An employee pretending to be ill so that they can cruise on sick pay or being dishonest about their illness to avoid unwelcome responsibilities, is certainly worthy of discipline or even dismissal. However, just as is the case with presenteeism, proving that a member of your team is misrepresenting the facts can be immensely challenging. To act on your suspicions, you must be able to demonstrate clear and documented evidence of malingering before a judge—should the need ever arise. This is no small responsibility, making turning to corporate investigation services for assistance a prudent step.
How Corporate Investigations Specialists Can HelpMany businesses don’t realize the vast array of services that corporate investigators can provide in the name of keeping productivity on track. In the case that malicious presenteeism or malingering is underway, a skilled and discreet corporate investigator can launch a covert operation to catch an employee in the act. From surveillance and monitoring, to in-depth background checks and digital research, a seasoned private investigator will know how to efficiently reveal the truth, so that your company can find resolution.
When it comes to pervasive presenteeism as a symptom of corporate culture gone wrong, the only way to find resolution is to step back for a broader view. To provide such a bird’s-eye perspective, turn to Lauth Investigations for an innovative Corporate Culture Audit. While you may have your doubts about the health of your employees, a Corporate Culture Audit will reveal the health status of your business as a whole—revealing operational issues that are impacting morale, uncovering employee misconduct, and outlining a strategy to oil the wheels and get your businesses back up to speed.
Are you ready to learn more? Discover the details on our diverse offering of Corporate Investigations, and the celebrated Corporate Culture Audit. Proactivity always rewards, and the Lauth Investigations team is always on hand to answer your questions or provide free no-obligation quotes.