For SMEs, with fewer resources than large corporations, a happy and motivated workforce is vital. One way that can increase loyalty and productivity is by offering employees support when they need it most – during illness.
Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) is there for exactly those moments. Employers pay £89.35 per week for up to 28 weeks if the worker has been off work sick for four or more days in a row.
But what does that actually equate to?
If almost £90 sounds somewhat feasible to live on, bear in mind what expenses are coming out of that pot – not just food and travel costs, but also all household bills and mortgage/rent payments. It’s a daunting challenge, especially if there are children to look after as well.
EFFECT ON EMPLOYEES
Unum, an income protection insurer, talked to 6 people at random about SSP. As this
The pressure of living off reduced means is liable to create a lot of stress for employees at what is already
For an employer, offering more than the minimum through a sickness insurance scheme can reduce those worries. And with less stress comes a happier, more productive workforce, with reduced staff turnover1.
THE COST FOR SMES
For example, if an employee is off sick for four weeks, the employer would pay out £357.40 in SSP. Plus, if a temporary worker is brought in for three of those weeks on an average of, say, £100 per day, that makes an extra £1,500. The total cost of the absence is therefore £1857.40.
By contrast, a basic income protection policy is a set monthly premium and can cost as little as £200 per employee, per year2 – a fixed amount that SMEs can budget for accordingly.
For employers, offering more than SSP can be a cost-saving device protecting both their people and their business. Employees who feel looked after by the business can feel more engaged at work when they are back healthy and happy.
1 HBR. (2015). Proof That Positive Work Cultures Are More Productive
2 Unum. (2017). Health insurance: a simple guide
Disclaimer: The video referenced in this article is made by Unum, an insurer who offer this type of income protection. Unum is one of
*In the video, one of the subjects states