Reduce Absenteeism

Plants help to reduce absenteeism.

Absence from work costs British business billions of pounds every year. Job dissatisfaction and low morale can be prominent factors in short-term absence and could account for as much as 15% of all reported sickness absence. Employers can tackle this most easily by re-examining people management policies and the working environment, to see what can be done to improve staff productivity and well being. If companies with the worst absence rates could meet average levels, the UK economy would be £1.9 billion better off. (Ref: “In sickness and in health”, Business Voice, June 2003, p11.)

The humble plant may be part of the solution. Putting plants in buildings can significantly reduce absence from work. It isn’t necessary to fill every available space with a plant to achieve this; just a few good-quality specimens located near to where people work and congregate seems to suffice. The reasons why this has a beneficial effect are probably a subtle but complex mixture of the physiological (improved humidity, reduced noise etc.) and psychological. Being around plants certainly seems to reduce stress and engender a feeling of well-being in most people, a benefit that is even more acute if correct lighting is in place. The fact that the employer has been prepared to spend money on something that has no obvious function other than to make the workplace more attractive may also be a contributing factor, by sending a signal to staff that management cares.

Plants make buildings look more attractive, welcoming and are the finishing touch to the décor of a healthy working environment.