Managing Employees Who Leave Work Early

Posted by Andrew on January 14, 2019

Companies struggle with employee attendance challenges at multiple levels. Employees who arrive late, take long lunches, or abuse their sick leave, put strains on an organization and workplace morale. However, employees who habitually leave work early can wreak just as much havoc. If management notices, odds are the rest of the staff is aware as well.

Allowing an employee to flout their work hours will create resentment among the rest of the staff that works their full hours or encourage other employees to start ducking out before their shift is over as well. The following are several ways management can address this issue:

  1. Stop avoiding it. Looking the other way isn’t a solution. Many bosses try to avoid confrontation because they don’t want their employees to perceive them as mean. However, leaving early isn’t acceptable. Management needs to take the employee aside and inform him or her that the behavior hasn’t gone unnoticed. Management should also take the time to find out why. There may be a reason the employee is leaving early that management can help address.
  2. Develop a solution. If the employee is leaving early because they are caring for an elderly family member or they have to pick their child up from daycare, it is worth it to consider shifting their schedule. Allowing the employee to arrive earlier in the day can give them the flexibility they need to balance their personal life with their job.
  3. Enforce the agreed upon terms. Establishing rules doesn’t do much good if an employer doesn’t enforce them. Employers need to keep tabs on employees with known attendance issues. They should also make it clear that continuing to leave early will have repercussions. Employers should meet with HR to determine the best course of action regarding escalating consequences.
  4. Establish a method to track attendance. Employers who don’t track attendance may not notice employees who leave early as soon as they should. Implementing an absence reporting program can help improve productivity while reducing attendance issues.

The expectation that employees come to work on time and stay for the duration of their shift isn’t an unreasonable one. However, for a multitude of reasons, employees may try to skirt their hours and leave work early. To learn more about addressing attendance issues, contact the experts at Actec.