How your employees may be costing you money


A competent, well-trained workforce is essential for any business, especially for enterprises in a stage of rapid development. Whereas the majority of employees will work hard and honestly for the organization, there may be some who take advantage of their place and could be costing the business money.


Here are some things to be aware of in the workplace.


Using the Internet for personal time


It’s hard now to imagine a time when the Internet was not around, but its ubiquity in businesses and homes, not to mention on mobile devices, means that it can be easy for employees to take advantage of the work computers to access the Internet for personal use when they should be working. They are, after all, being paid to work, not play, so adopting a company policy that permits them to use computers for personal time online only during breaks should help address the problem.


Taking office supplies


There can be few employees who haven’t ended up with a pen or some sticky notes at home at one time or another, and if they are working remotely that can be acceptable. However, if larger and more expensive items start to go missing from the supply cupboard, such as calculators, staplers or printer cartridges, it’s time to call a halt. One deterrent could be to have a system for signing these types of items out. It won’t necessarily stop everything but it could make a considerable difference.


Substance abuse


There can be times when employers suspect that an employee may be misusing substances such as drugs and alcohol, or other substances that may be legal but have an effect on the brain and body. This could be, potentially, a very dangerous situation. Employees who do have a problem are more likely to be careless in their work and in relation to their colleagues, and in certain situations the possibility for harm to come them or a co-worker is very real.


Those with problems are also more liable to take time off sick; affecting business efficiency with the consequence that money is lost.


Many employers now implement a drug-testing policy in the workplace, with appropriate support to detect the presence of drugs with Matrix Diagnostics. This gives employers the opportunity to refer an employee for help and support to overcome their addiction.


Sick leave


Many employees will be familiar with a lack of desire to go to work some days so they call in sick, even though they are not. Businesses need a robust but fair policy in place that may permit sick days to be rolled over into the next year. A doctor’s note for absences over a certain number of days should be part of that policy.


Telephone calls


Some employees may consider that making long-distance personal calls a perk of the office job. It isn’t. It costs money and is expensive, an immediate hit to the bottom line. Telephone bills should be checked carefully to see if the system is being abused.