Sickness levels lower than private sector

Published: 11 July 2012

New figures show that sickness absence levels amongst town hall staff in Wandsworth are among the UK’s lowest.

Last year council staff across all town hall departments took an average of just 5.5 days off sick. This figure includes staff suffering from long term illnesses.

The figures show a continual improvement in sickness absence rates in recent years, down from an average of 7.7 days in the 2008/9 financial year.

This means that staff working for Wandsworth are currently outperforming many employees in the private sector, according to the latest figures from the Confederation of British Industry (CBI).

The CBI, which represents 240,000 British companies, found that the average number of days lost to sickness absence across the private sector was 5.9 days.   

The council's performance is also better than almost every other public sector organisation. The latest study by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) found that in the public sector average sickness absence levels stood at 9.1 days per employee - and in local government the figure reached 9.6 days.

Council leader Ravi Govindia said: "Staff who work in Wandsworth town hall deserve great credit for their continuing efforts to minimise sickness absence.

"To be so far ahead of other public sector organisations and to be also beating the private sector is a great achievement and one for which they should be rightly proud.

"My experience of staff in Wandsworth is that they have a strong commitment to provide the best quality service they can to the people of this borough. They will invariably always go the extra mile to make sure they meet residents' expectations.

"In these difficult economic times it is it is important that we all do as much as we can to carry on delivering efficient, responsive and value-for-money services for our residents. The fact that our staff are so productive and industrious is one of the reasons why Wandsworth's council tax bills remain the lowest in the country."