60 per cent of workplaces have employees with H1N1: Survey

Side effects for employers include higher absenteeism, missed deadlines and distracted employees

More than one-half of Canadian employers (58.3 per cent) have workers suffering from the H1N1 flu, according to a survey of 503 human resources professionals conducted by Canadian HR Reporter.

And an additional 18.9 per cent of respondents weren’t sure if one of their employees had H1N1, while 22.9 per cent said no.

While slightly more than one-half said the pandemic isn’t disrupting their business at all, 46 per cent said it was having some impact and 2.4 per cent said it was having a “great deal” of impact on business.

Side effects of the H1N1 for employers include higher absenteeism and staff shortages, overtime and delayed deadlines, less in-person interaction with clients, distracted or anxious employees and lost productivity.

Some medical professionals have called for employers to suspend the requirement for doctor’s notes during the pandemic. How are employers responding?

Almost four in 10 (37.2 per cent) have taken the doctors’ advice and suspended the requirement for a sick note, while 43.3 per cent have not. Almost one in five respondents (18.3 per cent) said they don’t usually ask employees for sick notes, while 1.2 per cent have introduced a requirement for sick notes during the pandemic.

The online survey of Canadian HR Reporter readers was conducted from Nov. 9 to Nov. 12. For a complete look at the survey, plus insights into how organizations are handling the pandemic, look for the Nov. 30 issue of Canadian HR Reporter.

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