It is estimated that unplanned employee absences can cost employers as much as $3.6 million dollars a year. When employees do not show up for work, employers must shift the work on to other employees in the form of overtime or bring in a temp, both of which increase costs. Absences are especially a problem now that increased layoffs have trimmed down workforces. In order to cope with this, some employers are changing their polices regarding work schedules, giving employees more flexibility.
See T. Shawn Taylor and Kevin Pang, Chicago Tribune, June 26, 2003