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Attendance policy suggestions?

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Question: I work for a company that has multiple locations with only three to five employees each (arcades located in malls). Our store managers have to deal a lot with employees showing up late for their shifts and calling in absent after their shift has begun, as well as no-call no-shows.

Because we usually have only one person on duty at a time, this can become a nightmare for the store managers, who have to cover shifts when employees don't show, causing lots of overtime and double shifts.

I'm trying to come up with a new attendance/tardiness policy and would like some suggestions. (We have a "No verbal warning" policy in place; everything must be in writing.)  -- Carey, Dallas


At our company the "Absence - No Show" & "Tardiness" policies are as follows:

"Absence - No Show"
"If you cannot report to work due to illness or emergency, it is essential that you promptly notify your immediate management at least 30 minutes before your starting time. A family member or other designated person may contact your management if you are unable to do so. However, leaving a message with a co-worker or on phone mail is not considered sufficient notification. It is your responsibility to keep your management informed of your progress daily or as often as required by management. If you are absent for more than three consecutive days, you should provide your managment with a doctor's note. However, your management has the discretion to require a doctor's notice at any time. If you do not report to work or call within two working days, the Company reserves the right to consider your absence a voluntary resignation."

"Tardiness" policy which is part of the "Standards of Conduct" is:
"(Company) retains the right to discipline or discharge an employee for any reason it deems sufficient. Althought this list is not exhausive, we have outlined examples of inappropriate behaviors:
- Excessive or unexcused absences or tardiness. Failure to notify your immedicate management of absence or tardiness. Taking unauthorized time off.
Violations of any of the above or engaging in other misconduct may result in disciplanary action or discharge."

These were reviewed by attorneys and deemed legal. I hope this helps.

Our policy on Attendance and Punctuality reads:

As an employee of (company), we expect you to be reliable and punctual by reporting for work on time and as scheduled. When you are absent or late, it places a burden on other employees and can impact productivity and service. In the rare instances when you cannot avoid being late or are unable to work as scheduled, be sure to notify your supervisor or manager as early as possible prior to your start time, so that appropriate arrangements can be made.

An employee who does not call or show up for work for two days as scheduled is considered a "no call, no show." This is considered a voluntary resignation.

Because unplanned absences can be disruptive to work, a poor attendance record or excessive lateness may lead to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.

Our company has an employee handbook that everyone reads and signs their first day of work. Basically it includes basic things like holiday pay, vacation, etc. but it also includes an attedance policy and it reads;

If you need to call out to your shift for being sick or an emergency they are to call their manager by 6:30 am, we begin work at 8:00 am. There is no sick time so we also state that the manager is allowed to request a doctors note for your absence. If you call at 8:00 am you will reciece a couseling report or written warning. Get enough of those and you will be fired.

Vacation is to be passed in 3 months in advance and if something comes up with in 3 months you have to find coverage for your own shift, and here managers do not cover shifts!!!

If you no call/ no show, you've basically fired yourself because we list this as a reaseon for immediate termination.

Tardiness is also not allowed. If you are tardy you receive a couseling report or a written warning. Also, if you get enough of those you will be fired, and we state that on the warning.

Because of the nature of your business many of your employees may not take their job seriously. Those that don't show up probably don't want the job anyway therefore your managers will be stuck filling in for those type of employees. Perhaps you can work with a reward system in addition to the earlier comments. Thoses employees that are punctual and that give advanced notice of tardiness or if they will be absent on a consistent basis, say 30 days, will receive a couple of free movie or dinner tickets or a bonus check of an extra $10 or $20. I know this system works in many factories. This will perhaps be cheaper in the long run than paying your managers over-time.

Just a thought.

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