Managing Attendance Course

   Fee £165              CLICK to Register and start any time


This e-learning programme has one single aim – to help managers to feel confident in managing attendance. Effective absence management is about creating working environments where employees are less likely to wake up and think ‘I don’t feel like going in to work today’.

A certain level of employee absence is an unavoidable feature of working life, but this does not mean that all absences should be regarded as inevitable and accepted passively. It is possible to reduce the amount of absence caused by aspects of work and also to tackle it by proactively managing attendance. These comprehensive modules focus on both prevention and rehabilitation.

The average cost of absence increased to £659 per employee per year from last year’s figure of £598. (CIPD 2007) Back pain is the leading cause of long-term absence for manual workers, while stress is the main cause of long-term absence for non-manual employees. On average, employers believe that about 16% of absence is not genuine.

Research from recent studies (IRS 2007, CBI/AXA 2007) highlights the important role manager’s play in managing attendance. This programme addresses these issues and educates managers on return to work interviews, disciplinary, short term attendance targeting, record keeping and the role of Occupational Health.

The programme has been created by Wellbeing4business in partnership with the Virtual College and has been written by experts in Occupational health, attendance and employment law. Main contributors were Joan Lewis, Dr Les Smith and managers and Human Resources professionals at Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust.

This course contains 6 e-learning modules and will take approximately 8-10 hours to complete. As an e-learning course learners are able to work at their own pace, breaking off and resuming their study as appropriate, the system automatically tracks progress throughout.


Lesson Plan


The sections covered include:

  • Introduction 
    A brief introduction into best practice research and the course objectives.
  • Rights and responsibilities
    This employment module has nine activities including; employment law responsibilities, data analysis and protection, sick pay and medical certificates, disciplinary and dismissal, discrimination including disability, age discrimination, bullying.
  • Health and wellbeing
    An interactive module that helps managers to understand the importance of wellbeing at work. The module educate managers how to manage pressure in themselves and others and details the legalities and implications of stress at work. The module also covers the management of musculoskeletal disorders (MSD) and absence
  • Return to work
    This module introduces the Bio-psychosocial model and its role in removing the obstacles that prevent or delay return to work. Managers are given checklists that support successful return and informed on the role of data and communication. Finally the module teaches managers how to carry out the return to work interviews/discussions using the GROW model. This module is supported by numerous video and audio cases
  • Support services
    This module demonstrates the role of Occupational health, Human Resources and Employee Assistance Programmes. It helps managers to understand how to communicate with health professionals and clarifies understanding on medical ethics, confidentiality and compliance
  • Short and long term attendance
    This final module summaries the best practice guidelines in managing both short and long term absence.



The content of this course has been independently certified as conforming to universally accepted Continuous Professional Development (CPD) guidelines.


On completion of this course you will be able to download a Virtual College certificate.


Approximately 8 - 10 hours. The length of time taken depends entirely on how quickly you can study and absorb the material. You can proceed as quickly or slowly as you like.

Target Audience

This course is highly relevant for any Manager who has a role in managing attendance. Enrolling on this course helps meet health and safety obligations and supports attendance management plans. Previous knowledge of the subject is not required.

Entry Requirements


There are no specific entry requirements for this course.

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