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ADP Survey Reveals U.S. Employers Not Taking Concrete Steps To Control Workplace Absenteeism

Stocks in this article: ADP

ROSELAND, N.J., Oct. 2, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Companies nationwide recognize the negative effects of employee absenteeism on productivity and profitability, according to a new ADP Research Institute℠ survey on Total Absence Management (TAM), the framework for absence tracking, compliance and administration. While the majority of organizations track absences, many are not taking additional concrete steps to manage and mitigate absenteeism.

The online survey conducted in May 2012 by the ADP Research Institute — a specialized group within ADP that provides insights to leaders in both the private and public sectors around issues in human capital management, employment trends and workforce strategy — includes input from 503 HR/benefits decision makers in U.S. enterprises. These respondents include 254 participants from midsized organizations (those with 50-999 employees) and 249 from large organizations (those with 1,000 or more employees).

"Our survey shows that most employers in the U.S. do not conduct systemic benchmarks and do not fully quantify the impact of absence on their business," said Tim Clifford, President, Benefits Services and Talent Management at ADP, a leading provider of human resource management, payroll and benefits administration services. "Although companies are aware of the resulting losses in productivity, many are unwilling or unable to take explicit steps to control absenteeism. As employers move toward automation of human capital management, we see a clear need for the effective integration of Total Absence Management programs with existing payroll and HR platforms."

Key findings of the ADP Research Institute's Total Absence Management survey include:

  • Large companies report a significantly higher average annual rate of absenteeism (3.5 percent) than do midsized companies (3.2 percent).
  • Half or more of the decision makers in midsized (50 percent) and large (54 percent) companies report that absenteeism has reduced productivity; about one third (30 percent of midsized and 36 percent of large) say that it has reduced profitability, and at least 28 percent of midsized and large companies report increased operational costs.
  • Healthcare-related issues are the top reason for absences and account for about half of all absences in both large and midsized companies. Among companies that offer wellness programs, more than half of midsized (53 percent) and large (58 percent) employers report that these programs have significantly reduced absenteeism.
  • Large employers are much more likely to apply punitive discipline than midsized employers (47 percent versus 35 percent). Large employers are also more likely than midsized employers to analyze reasons for absence and to identify opportunities to offer additional health and wellness benefits (27 percent versus 13 percent). 
  • Midsized companies are more likely to rely only on manual methods to track absence (49 percent), ensure compliance (52 percent) and apply absence policies (56 percent), while large employers are more likely to use a combination of manual and automated work flow processes along with specialized software.

Upcoming Webinar to Discuss Survey Findings

ADP Research Institute will present a related Webinar on October 3, 2012 from 3-4 p.m. ET. To register for the webinar, go to

About the Survey

The ADP Research Institute conducted the ADP HR/Benefits Study on Total Absence Management in May 2012. The respondents include 254 participants from midsized organizations (those with 50-999 employees) and 249 from large organizations (those with 1,000 or more employees). The resulting data achieved statistical reliability at the 95 percent confidence level both overall and in each of the size groups. Respondents had to be key decision makers (evaluators, recommenders, final decision makers) for employee benefits policy or major benefits system or service purchases within their enterprises. Fifty percent of midsized respondents and 32 percent of large respondents were the actual heads of HR or employee benefits within their organizations.

About the ADP Research Institute

The ADP Research Institute is a specialized group within ADP that provides insights to leaders in both the private and public sectors around issues of human capital management, employment trends and workforce strategy.

About ADP

Automatic Data Processing, Inc. (NASDAQ: ADP), with more than $10 billion in revenues and approximately 600,000 clients, is one of the world's largest providers of business outsourcing solutions. Leveraging over 60 years of experience, ADP offers a wide range of human resource, payroll, tax and benefits administration solutions from a single source. ADP's easy-to-use solutions for employers provide superior value to companies of all types and sizes. ADP is also a leading provider of integrated computing solutions to auto, truck, motorcycle, marine, recreational vehicle, and heavy equipment dealers throughout the world. For more information about ADP or to contact a local ADP sales office, reach us at 1.800.225.5237 or visit the company's Web site at


Chavonne Jones 212.445.8475                   M 917.562.2736


Copyright 2011 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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