When an employee has returned to work following a sickness absence you mat want to conduct a return to work interview. This is normally carried out by a line manager or HR manager as soon as the employee returns from sick leave, ideally on the first day back.

Research shows that a return to work interview is one of the most effective ways of managing attendance and reducing absence.

When carrying out a return to work interview we would recommend you cover the following points:

– Welcome employees back and ensure they are well enough to work.

– Update employees about any changes that have happened during their absence.

– Identify any workplace adjustments that may be needed.

– Develop or discuss the details of your return to work plan.

– Confirm that their absence record is correct.

– Offer them the opportunity to discuss any other issues that you/they may need help with.

– Reinforce the company sickness policy, where you can discourage unauthorised and non-genuine sickness absence.

When conducting the return to work interview we recommend that:

– These are always done face to face, although they don’t need to be overly formal.

– Make sure you listen to your employee.

– Show interest in what they say and take their concerns on board.

– Be objective – son’t be influenced by personal emotion or feelings.

– Ask open ended questions to encourage them to open up and talk.

– Try hard to make them feel comfortable and relaxed.

Here is some great advice from the HSE regards keeping in contact – www.hse.gov.uk/sicknessabsence/step2.html

If you would like support, advice or training on your organisations ‘back to work’ we would be happy to discuss your requirements here at Greening Consultants.

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