Presenteeism is an invisible problem in working life

Did you know that presentism can cause an average of 35 days of productivity loss per employee per year? Presenteeism, i.e. employees are at work, but they are not fully functioning, is nowadays an even bigger challenge than absenteeism. In Great Britain, for example, $58 billion a year is lost due to presenteeism.

Presenteeism can be caused by either physical, mental, or emotional challenges. It can lead to decreased productivity, reduced quality of work and increased health risks. Presenteeism is difficult to detect and resolve, because the root causes are often hidden and the root causes can be either employee, organizational culture or work related.  The effects of presenteeism are now even more serious for companies, public administration and society as a whole, as labour shortages challenge many industries.

Winning work communities know how to use data

Winning work communities understand how their employees are doing and are able to use this knowledge to reduce presenteeism. Investing in the preventive well-being of employees at work is a good investment. For example, if the average 20% presenteeism is reduced to 10%, it means a productivity improvement of up to one million euros in a company with 100 employees. At the same time, employees are better committed to the work community.

However, development measures should not be implemented randomly, but it is important to know what problem is being solved. Aisti Health offers a unique method and tool  for reducing presenteeism in working life. It is an AI-powered SaaS platform that finds the root causes behind  coping, commitment or motivation and makes intelligent recommendations for improvement. Aisti Health's intelligent data model identifies strengths, weaknesses and risks in the health and well-being of individuals and work communities behind coping, commitment or motivation. It examines the resources of employees and the work community from different perspectives: employee health, work community culture and work motivation factors.

The root causes can be compared from different perspectives, for example, by looking at differences between teams, locations, occupational groups, years of service, age or gender, or even by comparing differences between employees who work remotely, hybrid or onsite. Aisti Health also provides visibility into dependencies between different factors. Customer organizations gain accurate visibility into the root causes of presenteeism, and healthcare teams can gain insight into the health and well-being risks of individual employees so they can choose the right preventive measures.

Using data for effective measures

When the exact root causes behind possible presenteeism are known, it is easier to start planning measures. Aisti Health solves the problem of how to find the right preventive measures to reduce presenteeism. Our clinical experience and research show that too general well-being interventions do not work and need to be tailored to individuals and teams.

The Aisti Health service provides each employee with individual recommendations for improving well-being at work, and the organisation also receives recommendations on how to support employee well-being by developing the organisational culture and content of work.

It is also important to discuss the results and findings with the work community. These discussions usually provide valuable additional information on the background of the problems and good tips on measures and their implementation. The discussions involve the entire work community in the change in order to overcome presenteeism and increase employee well-being.

In addition, one-to-one discussions between supervisors and employees are necessary, as they make it easier to bring up even difficult issues related to work ability. Occupational health care is an important partner in the change, and occupational health often pro-actively contacts employees who have been identified with early health and work ability risks based on data. In these discussions, it is good to make an individual health plan based on the employee's own Aisti Health results and recommendations.

Once the common goals of the work community for overcoming presenteeism and strengthening well-being at work have been agreed, it is essential to define clear indicators for monitoring the change. By adding Aisti Health indicators to the key indicators of the work community, organization gets a good view of both the well-being and productivity of the work community. Work communities often repeat the Aisti Health measurement six months or a year later in order to monitor the development of the work community towards a healthier and more productive work community.

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