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UK — Under 35s twice as likely to call in sick

11 January 2010

New research by recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) firm Elemense (part of AIM listed Matchtech Plc) among 1,086 working adults aged 18+ shows that workers aged under 35 are twice as likely as their older colleagues to be off work in the winter because they are 'under the weather'. They are also twice as likely to stay late at work because gloomy evenings don't entice them out.

The research also shows that the under 35s are determined to 'tough it out' and are least likely to want an extra bank holiday in autumn to break up the long gap between late summer and the Christmas holidays.

Keith Sammons, Managing Director at Elemense, explained "we are now in the depths of winter. Days are just past their shortest and it seems a long time ago that we were enjoying the late summer bank holiday in August. Yet the popular view that an extra bank holiday is needed isn't supported by our research, only 43% of workers argued for one and the under 35s were the least keen."

"It's interesting that the under 35s who work longer to put off their journeys home in the darker nights are also more likely to be off work under the weather in winter. This might suggest that while they are least interested in an extra day off in autumn that they might be the very group that could benefit most."

Chris Wollen from office maintenance experts Ergro Group commented "we are seeing more firms than ever ask us to think about the right lighting and more comfortable working conditions, especially when they plan modifications in the winter months. It seems that avoiding the winter blues is a real management priority now."



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