Managing sickness absence and ill-health at work

This guidance for managers provides information on how to deal with sickness absence, ill-health and sick pay. It is important to deal with sickness matters effectively, and address situations promptly with sensitivity and professionalism, whilst meeting legal obligations.

This guidance should be read in conjunction with Section 4 of the staff handbook, which provides guidance to staff on sickness absence. Departments are responsible for recording, monitoring and managing all sickness absence and ill-health issues amongst their employees.

Departments are also responsible for ensuring that self-certification and/or medical certificates are provided as necessary and retained by departments.

Effective management of sickness absence and ill-health at work means:

  • informing employees of the procedure(s) to follow in the event of ill-health;
  • identifying concerns and problems at the earliest stage possible;
  • making employees aware that the University understands that employees may occasionally be afflicted by illnesses that prevent them from attending work, and will assist the employee in any way that is reasonable to ensure a successful return to work;
  • creating awareness of sickness absence consequences;
  • promoting the health and safety, and welfare of employees.