Getting Your Workforce Back to Work During COVID-19
July 2, 2020

Navigate the Challenges of Increased Workplace Sickness Claims

Many businesses are now at the point where they are returning to new-normal business operations while implementing stringent health and safety procedures. This could include anything from socially distanced lineups, the use of face masks, or encouraging customers, patrons, and staff to rigorously wash and disinfect their hands.

What might be a surprise, however, is that many of these businesses are struggling to bring their employees back to work. AFIMAC has recently been tasked with investigating sickness claims, which are allegedly preventing employees from returning to work.

The Current Economic Environment Has the Potential for Abuse

The issue at hand is that many employees were temporarily laid off or furloughed and began collecting government assistance while the pandemic played out. For the workers that make minimum wage or slightly higher, the motivation to return to work is low since government payments are comparable to their salary. The cost of commuting and the potential of contracting COVID-19 have many workers claiming they are ‘sick’ in order to continue collecting government assistance and ride out the rest of the pandemic.

Many industries are now being tasked with navigating through legitimate and illegitimate sickness claims. Employers might find themselves in ethical dilemmas, having to make compassionate decisions for some, and disciplining others for making false claims.

Social Media Investigations and Surveillance

AFIMAC has received an increase in requests to conduct workplace investigations to address increased absenteeism. Many employees are collecting government assistance, while their social media profiles suggest they are completely well and ready for work. Social media and private investigative services from AFIMAC can help address some of the concerns that the economy is facing, collecting information on specific employees, and presenting the findings to employers.

The difficult part for many employers is that there are several justifiable reasons why an employee would be unable to return work during this pandemic. Employees can refuse potentially unsafe work, and legitimate exposures to someone with COVID-19, leaving employers the challenge of being compassionate towards their employees and navigating these complicated claims.

AFIMAC Solutions for Employers

AFIMAC can provide both surveillance and social media investigations to employers who are struggling with their employees’ absenteeism. Many entry-level workers are weighing the pros and cons of actually coming back into work. More often than not, many workers believe that staying at home and lying to an employer is the simplest way out of the pandemic.

Any employer that might be concerned about sick claims or worker absenteeism are invited to visit our website to learn more. Strike a balance between compassion and business with AFIMAC.
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