EMPLOYERS in the south are being urged to do more to bring down sickness levels among their workforce.
Each year, nationally, 140 million working days are lost to sickness absence, costing the economy £9bn a year.
National Stress Awareness day is being held tomorrow, and Investors in People South, which covers firms in the Portsmouth area, said sickness levels have risen over the past year but there were encouraging signs employers were doing more to reduce long-term absence.
John Telfer, its managing director, said: ‘Managing the health of employees goes way beyond offering gym membership or free fruit – it is vital that staff feel valued.
‘Saying thank you, and genuinely meaning it, can be a huge motivator and have a huge impact on a person’s wellbeing.
‘It is much more about prevention rather than reacting to a situation.’