Absence Management At Scotsfood Plc Company Commerce Essay

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It is very important that Scotfoods Plc address this issue, because employee absence levels are really important to the business, as it can affect companies profit levels. If they don't address this issue soon they will start to lose their profits and they will also have to start replacing staff, which will result in more money lost as they will have to train new employees and that could be quite costly.

Causes of absence

Job dissatisfaction - it could be caused by the repetitiveness of tasks, employee might get bored doing the same things every single day therefore he/she will not want to go to the work.

Personal problems - like child care, financial problems etc.

Stress - employees usually get stressed if they can't keep up with the workload or if there are conflicts, bad relationships within the company.

Transportation problems - problems with getting to and from work, may


Commitment problems - employees are not committed to their job or company.

Absenteeism can be measured by recording how many days employees are not in work and keeping a record of every employee's absence levels.

How to control and reduce absence?

Motivating employees - employees can be motivated by implementing reward system, rewarding those employees who have reached the set goals on time and those who have showed some kind of commitment to the company like decreasing absenteeism.

Changing working environment - this could be done by making work place more comfortable and putting in modern equipment, because no one would want to come to work if you would have to sit in a dull, out of date office.

Creating attendance policy - policy that describes and informs every employee about the consequences of absenteeism and how it's going to be dealt with if it's too high.


For Scotfoods Plc I would recommend using "motivation" as their method of reducing absence levels by creating a reward system because money is the best motivator therefore it will motivate employees to come to work because they will know that they will get rewarded for that at the end.

I would also recommend them to regularly collect data on absence levels within the company.

Training - Different Training Methods

It is crucial for Scotfoods Plc to address this issue, because if employees are not being trained and regularly updating their skills it will have an effect on their performance and costumers will start to complain which will therefore have an effect on companies profit levels and also on its public image. Employee training has some benefits for the company like:

Training can save money as its cheaper to re-train existing employee instead of recruiting new one

Productivity will increase as training will enhance employees existing skills

Regular employee training will help the company to stay ahead of competition

Training Need Analysis

Training need analysis helps to identify the gap between the skills company needs and those the employees already have. It involves gathering data that allows the company to select the best possible solutions of filling this gap. When the gap is identified and analysed they can start training their employees.

Training need analysis is important because companies profit levels and customer satisfaction depends on having the right amount of skilled employees.

Training Methods

There are various training methods that can be used to train or re-train employees. Training methods are divided in 2 groups there are in-house training and off-job training.

In-house training

In house training is usually done while employees are doing their regular job, because it saves money and time.

Types of in house training:

Job rotation - it involves moving employees trough different jobs to increase their variety skills and motivation. This helps employees to learn a little bit about every role.

One to one coaching - this type of training is usually carried out by Line Manager. This involves giving advice to the employee and then reviewing his/her performance and setting higher expectations for the next period.

Job shadowing - this is where an employee has an opportunity to work alongside with someone who already is doing the job. This allows him/her to gain first had experience of the role, the duties and procedures.

Advantages of in-house training

In house training saves time as you don't have to travel to training centres and trainees don't have to take out time from work as it's done while they are doing their regular work

It also saves money, as employers don't have to invest money in travelling expenses, booking training centres.

You can address each employees specific training needs

Off-job training

Off the job training involves employee training away from actual working environment, outside his/her work place.

Types of in house training:

Simulations - employee participates in a reality based activity, where he/she reduplicates actions required on the job.

Day release - involves employee taking some time out from job to go to the training centre or college.

Self discovery - this involves employees learning on their own using books and research.

Conference - this method is very good for those who need to learn how to solve problems that may occur in the working environment. A group of people are asked to consider a specific issue and reach an agreement about what could be done to resolve this issue.

Advantage of off-job training

Employees can focus on training without being without being disrupted by work

They have an opportunity to be trained by specialists

Off job training also gives them an opportunity to mix with employees from other companies, this could be beneficial because they could learn form each other


For Scotfoods Plc I would recommend Off-Job Training, because communication between staff has not been very good therefore in-house training would be ineffective as some of the methods require communication between employees.

Before starting training need analysis Scotfoods Plc should look at their budget because training sometimes can be quite expensive depending on the number of employees that need to be trained. After they know what they can afford to spend on employee training they should gather data on every employee - what skills they already have and what skills they need or need to improve on. After gathering all the necessary information Scotfoods Plc should develop a specific training plan for each employee.


Appraisals are used to evaluate employee's performance and to help employer to identify any problems and future training requirements. Appraisals are also used to improve company's performance.

Advantages of performance appraisals

Helps to identify training needs and development needs

Increased employee motivation, as they will receive a bonus, reward if their performance is good, and if the performance improves their bonuses increase in the result

Increased communication between employee and the manager, as the manager will have an opportunity to meet with the employee to discuss his/her performance and provide a feedback about employee's performance

Provides a record on each employee in the company

Gives an opportunity to set goals for the next period

Makes employees feel like their work is recognised and that they are more appreciated

Disadvantages of performance appraisals

Can be quite time consuming if there a lot of employees in the company

Is a waste of time if they are delivered incorrectly

Can be stressful for the employee and also for manager who deals with appraisals


As there are more advantages to appraisals then disadvantages I would highly recommend Scotfoods Plc the following appraisal methods:

Behaviourally anchored rating scales (BARS) - it focuses on specific employee behaviours, this method indicates if employee's performance is effective or ineffective. (Please see Appendix 1 to see an example)

360 Appraisal - it involves gathering anonymous feedback from manager, internal customers, peers and direct reports about employee's performance

Critical incident method - this method involves manager writing down the good and bad performance behaviours of employee over the period of time

Using these appraisal methods will make Scotfoods Plc employees feel more appreciated and this will result in better performance and increased profits.


Induction is a process of introduction new employees to the company by going through all the procedures and regulations like heath and safety procedure. It also gives an opportunity for new employees to be introduced to other people in the company. Induction is usually done before the new employees start actually working.

The purpose of Induction

To reduce chances of employee early leaving the company because it can be very costly for the company as they will have to recruit some new and go through the training again

To welcome new employees to the company so that they feel comfortable

To introduce new employees to the other people within the company which will help them to communicate with each other better when they actually start working

To give a brief information on company's history, its culture and values

To go through the procedure and policies of the company

To give new employees an opportunity to get familiar with the facilities in the company, tour of the premises

To introduce new employees with their duties and responsibilities within the company

This is why induction is very important because it ensures that new employees are productive as soon as they start working

Good induction procedure reduces the risk of high staff turnover and a possibility of poor performance from new employees.

It is also important to keep a checklist for each employee of the areas which have been covered during the induction process.

Example of Induction Checklist (Please see Appendix 2)


All employees must hand in an income tax form from previous employer. Employees will also receive few forms from the company like health and safety rules, book of company disciplinary rules and regulations.

Employers usually just create the employee handbook which contains all the necessary information that new staff need to know such as:

Health and safety rules

Disciplinary rules

Information about wages, when and how they're going to be paid

Information about holidays

Bonus schemes


Information on training and career prospects

Medical facilities, etc


I would recommend Scotfoods Plc to develop an induction procedure to ensure that all employees know what they are doing and to reduce the possibility of accidents. They should also make sure that all the new employees settle quickly in the company because that will result in increased production and better performance and also will make them feel more involved and satisfied with their job. As new employees are usually very motivated induction procedure will make sure that this motivation is toughened and boosted up.

Recruitment and Selection - Interviewing

The purpose of interviewing is to gather necessary information about the candidate which will allow the assessors to analyse this information and predict whether the candidate is right for the position and also make predictions of his/her future performance. It also aims to introduce the company to the employee in a good way, so that he/she has a good impression about the company and about their goods/services they provide. After the interview is done it gives interviewee an opportunity to ask any questions he/she might have relating to the salary range or about the duties or responsibilities associated with the position.

Advantages of Interviews

Provides employer with an opportunity to ask employee questions about previous experiences

Allows employer to give information about the company and the job

Enable interviewees to ask questions about the job, training and career prospectus

Gives an opportunity to the interviewer to find out more about interviewees personality

Allows interviewer to find out if the candidate has good communication skills which may be necessary for the job

Disadvantages of Interviews

Can be quite time consuming if you have a lot of people to interview

Interviews rely on the skills of the interviewer, and most of the people are quite bad at interviewing

It can also be quite expensive

Can lead to bias, if there is no another opinion

Types of Interviews

Unstructured interviews - this type of interview doesn't have any set format or any questions made in advance. Questions are made up on a spot depending on interviewee's responses.

Structured interviews - the interviewer has a set of questions that are asked to all the candidates. This type of interview ensures that all candidates are treated fairly.

Situational interviews - a candidate is asked questions on a specific situation that he/she might face at work. This type of interview helps to see if the candidate has problem solving skills.


For Scotfoods Plc I recommend Situational Interviews, because the questions that are asked in this type of interview are asked to see if interviewee has problem solving skills and also analytical skills and also situation-solving skills, which are very important and beneficial for any job. This type of interview will help Scotfoods Plc select the best possible candidates for the positions within the company.


I have done research on few issues under HR Processes and made recommendations on how they could be solved if Scotfoods Plc chose the right methods of resolving each problem. The recommendations that I have made are based on the problems that Scotfoods Plc is experiencing and if they are used they can result in increased profits, increased motivation of employees and also improved performances.


Michael Armstrong, (2006), a Handbook of Human Resource Management Practice

How to Reduce Absenteeism, http://www.safeworkers.co.uk/HowToReduceAbsenteeism.html

Blackboard, Office Management

Employee Training and Development, http://www.bizmove.com/personnel/m4d.htm

Performance Appraisals, http://www.businessballs.com/performanceappraisals.htm

Advantages and Disadvantages of Performance Appraisals, http://www.zeromillion.com/business/advantages-and-disadvantages-of-performance-appraisals.html

Behaviourally Anchored Rating Scales (BARS) Example, http://www.sba.oakland.edu/Faculty/york/bos.bmp,

Induction, http://www.cipd.co.uk/subjects/recruitmen/induction/induction.htm,

Interviews, http://www.hr-guide.com/data/G311.htm

Situational Interview, http://www.humanresources.hrvinet.com/situational-interview/

Appendix 1