Group Risk Development (GRiD) has warned that ‘national sickie day' can be the start of longer term problems for some employees.
'National Sickie Day' is the day with the highest rates of sickness absence in the year in the UK.
Employment Law Advisory Services estimated £34m was lost on the same day in 2014, through reduced productivity and lost opportunities, as well as the effects on those staff who remain.
Katharine Moxham, spokesperson for Group Risk Development (GRiD), said: "National Sickie Day may not appear to have much impact at first glance, but just one day of absences can be an early warning for more complicated issues, leading to longer term absence.
Moxham added: "While most employers may give staff the benefit of the doubt for taking one day off, National Sickie Day shows the effect external pressures can have on working life, not least due to Christmas debt taking its toll, and attention needs to be given to the cost that unforeseen long-term absence has.
"Our research has found that only 10% of employers have line managers trained to spot signs of stress and mental health conditions, an early intervention strategy which can help support staff internally. Spotting the signs early on and acting quickly will make a huge difference further down the line. "
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