You might change your mind; some companies hire private detectives to bust sick-day abusers.
Most of the employees use this excuse when they have personal stuffs to do, and in fact they are not sick!
Many of us at work whether we are regular employees or in management, we hear that our co-worker has called in sick, and he/she is not coming to work.
It could be true that the sickness is behind the absence, but most of the time it is not.
And the reasons to call in sick when there is no sickness could be a lot, for example:
- Family issue or matter
- Appointment or visit
- Laziness or “you don’t feel to work”, or a relaxing day
- Personal stuffs: fixing the car – going trip or picnic – Fishing
- Shopping or catching up with sales and grocery
However, the list could be longer …
And this how it starts sometimes; Oh, man, Christmas (or a holiday) is coming soon, and you haven't done nearly enough shopping. One little sick day would accomplish so much! Sounds tempting!
It is nice to take an extra day off, and everybody likes it, and it is just simple to pick up the phone whether in the morning before going to work or the night before and call the boss that “I don’t feel good, or I have a migraine, or flu, or …..”, and most of the time the boss says “ok, no problem, hope you get better”, and it works in this way.
Doing that sounds an easy task to take a day off.
But companies are starting to catch on, and making it harder. One work-force productivity firm says 57% of U.S. employees abuse sick days, taking them when they feel just fine, BusinessWeek reports. That's up nearly 20% from a few years ago.
So now companies are hiring private detectives to spy on employees who call in sick. Investigators have found them at bowling alleys, football games and funerals, and one private eye says that "80 to 85% of the time there's definitely fraud happening," BusinessWeek reports.
Companies are apparently feeling a little better about this after a legal decision that backed up employee snooping. One woman was busted in 2008 for abusing her paid medical leave, and her subsequent lawsuit against her employer was dismissed in court. Spying isn't nice, the judges essentially said, but it's not illegal.
BusinessWeek has a funny story of one health care employee who was out for three days with the "flu." A private eye followed her to the Universal Studios theme park and bought automatic snapshots of her on the roller coaster. He even found a video of her at the animal show there. She continued to deny that she was there but was fired anyway.
The BusinessWeek story is amusing, but it doesn't answer some key questions. Sick-day abuse is going up, but are companies actually spying more on their employees? And why would a company go to all the effort? Hiring a private eye is expensive and hardly seems worth it if someone is out for a couple of days!
After that are you still dare to call in sick when you are not?!