Precise promotes absentee system

Precise Public Affairs is to target government departments as it promotes software aimed at improving workplace productivity.

The agency has kicked off a three-month campaign promoting PMI Health Group's Absencemanager, which lets employees record details of any absence from work electronically via an automated phone system.

Absenteeism in the public sector costs an estimated £645 per employee per year.

PPA will concentrate on Whitehall and Westminster decision makers, emphasising the tool's ability to allow employers to identify ‘specific systematic problems' among staff.

PPA director of public affairs Robbie MacDuff is leading the account.

The average number of working days lost across the civil service in 2005 was 9.8 per person - at a cost of £450m, according to a recent Cabinet Office report. The Government wants to reduce the number of days lost by 30 per cent by 2010.

PPA director of government relations Chris Lowe said: ‘With Absencemanager it is easy for managers to analyse problems.

Employees might be off [suspiciously often] on Fridays and Mondays, but it might also show up patterns of absence through stress or back problems.'

The Government has made various attempts to tackle absenteeism. In addition to the DoH's Well At Work programme it convened a health, safety and productivity taskforce run by the Cabinet Office and the Department for Work and Pensions, which reported in 2004.

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