Agenda Item No


The Vale of Glamorgan Council


Cabinet Meeting - 30th July 2012


Report of the Leader


Sickness Absence Report Full Year April 2011- March 2012


Purpose of the Report

1.             To update members with the sickness information for the financial year April 2011 - March 2012.


1.             It is recommended that the report and the outturn provided in Appendix A are accepted.


2.             The absence targets for the previous financial year be applied to the current year. 

Reasons for the Recommendations

1.             To bring matters to the attention of members of the Cabinet in line with Corporate Objectives.


2.             To maintain realistic targets and where possible improve the Council's current attendance rates of staff.



2.             The Corporate Management of Attendance policy has been operational since October 2008 and has contributed to a sustained reduction in the level of absence across the Council.

3.             This report acknowledges the work and commitment of managers and staff in increasing attendance and reducing the cost of absence.

Relevant Issues and Options

4.             Absence information for the period April 2011 to March 2012 is as follows:-




Annual Target

Actual Absence

Average days / shifts lost per FTE (Corporate)



Percentage of lost time by FTE (Corporate)




Average days / shift lost by FTE including Schools



Percentage of lost time by FTE including Schools




Full details of this breakdown are attached at appendix A.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

5.             The above figures represent a reduction on last year's absence outturn of 8.52 average days/shifts lost per FTE or 3.3%. This is reduction of 5% on last year's figures and a 48% reduction on the reported figures in 2007/8 which was prior to the introduction of the existing Management of Attendance policy and procedures.

6.             Out of the 23 Services it is very encouraging that nine Services have exceeded their targets. As members will appreciate some Services have been unable to achieve their targets through a host of issues including Democratic Services within the Directorate of Legal, Public Protection and Housing as well as the Business Management and Innovation Services within Social Services.

7.             The Democratic Services Section for example, within the Directorate of Legal, Public Protection and Housing consists of only 26 employees with one long term absence accounting for the majority of days lost.  If this case were excluded, it would bring the department absence level well within target.

8.             Within the Business Management and Innovation Service, Directorate of Social Services a total absence of 19.95 days has been occasioned against a target of 5.4 days per FTE. However in November 2011 a restructure took place which included the transfer of approximately 200 staff from Adult Services to the Business Management and Innovation Service (both Services are within the Directorate of Social Services) resulting in the increase in absence for this section and the reduction in Adult services currently showing as being below target.  If the average FTE figure was adjusted to take account of the date of transfer the figure would be closer to 14.97 days lost by FTE. This remains above target and the Service has committed to concentrate efforts to address this during this year.

9.             However members will be pleased in the knowledge that the overall the Social Services sickness absence has reduced from 12.99 days last year to the current 11.55 days. A separate report will be referred to the Scrutiny Committee (Social Care & Health) in accordance with the Committees previous request as part of their work programme.

10.        The Cabinet will be provided with comparative absence data in respect of other Welsh local authorities and those of the Vale of Glamorgan within the next Half Yearly Sickness Absence report as these are currently unavailable. However, it is anticipated that the Council will once again within the upper quartile of those Council with the lowest absence rates.

11.        On the basis of the above, it is proposed that the corporate absence targets for 2012/13 remain the same as those set for 2011/2012.  This is seen as offering a target that maintains the focus on absence management whilst acknowledging the increasingly difficult financial climate.

12.        On conclusion of the restructures resulting from the Senior Management Review appropriate adjustments will be made to future reports, including revising targets to take account of these changes and to provide meaningful comparative data reflective of the new structures. The overall Council target would remain the same.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

13.        The incidence of high levels of absence has significant resource implications and places constraints on the continued delivery of high quality service provision and presents a significant financial burden on available financial resources.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

14.        All legal implications including the Human Rights Act and Data Protection Act have been considered within the implementation of the policy provisions.

Crime and Disorder Implications

15.        The Council's attendance levels have an impact on the Council's ability to deliver its crime and disorder initiatives.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

16.        In progressing the Management of Attendance Policy, the Council will remain compliant with its obligations under the Equality Act

Corporate/Service Objectives

17.        The Council will be unable to deliver corporate objectives without keeping absence levels to a minimum.

Policy Framework and Budget

18.        The report is a matter for the Executive decision by the Cabinet

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

19.        All Chief Officers are aware of the absence figures within their respective services.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

20.        Corporate Resources.

Background Papers

Appendix A -  2011/2012 Sickness figures and targets.


Contact Officer

Adrian Unsworth - Operational Manager Human Resources 01446 709359


Officers Consulted

Corporate Management Team.

Gill Howells - Operational Manager - Finance and Systems


Responsible Officer:

Sian Davies - Director of Finance, ICT and Property