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The Real Impact of Absenteeism on Retail Store Operations and Employee Engagement
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"The Real Impact of Absenteeism on Retail Store Operations and Employee Engagement"
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Results from the 2018 Global Retail Absence Survey by The Workforce Institute at Kronos

Employee absence is a natural part of any business, and the need to manage it proactively is essential to providing the optimal customer experience. It starts with understanding employees’ preferences, considering their availability, and making it easy for them to modify their schedule or swap a shift. After all, employees who work schedules built around their preferred hours and availability will be more engaged and productive, have fewer instances of unplanned absence, and enjoy a longer tenure with an organization.

The Global Retail Absence Survey by The Workforce Institute™ at Kronos Incorporated analyzed the responses of retail managers across Australia, Canada, France, Germany, the U.K., and the U.S., to examine the broad impact of absenteeism on retail organizations. Key findings from the survey include:

  • Employee absenteeism impacts store operations as well as employee engagement, with retailers feeling a strong impact on staff morale and productivity.
  • Retail managers are forced to act reactively rather than proactively to ensure efficient store operations: 42 percent of all managers are given only 1 to 3 hours’ notice when an employee is not going to show up for work.
  • Sixty-seven percent of stores are understaffed more than 25 percent of the time during peak periods, adding significantly to the workloads of those who work busy shifts.


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