Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Novak, Ralph S.||Swanish, Peter T.

Degree Name

M.S. (Master of Science)

Legacy Department

Department of Business Administration


Absenteeism (Labor)


The purpose of this study was to investigate some methods through which costly employee absence could be controlled, or at least minimized, so that production and profits could bemaximized to their fullest potential. Top management is frequently unaware of the tremendous possibilities of increased profit margins should this absenteeism be controlled. Reporting departments, for fear of tighter controls, are not too inclined to convey the whole story of the absentee problem to upper management. Those in Management who are aware of the problem often choose not to act on the basis that they feel there is little that can be done about it. On the other hand, some top management people, looking in every nook and corner for hidden profits or reduced operating costs, are aware of the potential and have activated programs reducing their absenteeism percentages. A selected electronic firm, employing a high percentage of women, has calculated its additional direct labor charges as costing very close to $20,000 a month, exclusive of indirect charges due to rework, transportation of returned production, and lowered production efficiency. A three-way approach was taken in the research for this study. First of all, 80 per cent of the some sixty member Electronic Personnel Association responded to a Questionnaire on Absentee Control Programs. Secondly, a selected electronic firm's fifteen year history on absenteeism was analyzed. This included a detailed study of its three plant locations with a current analysis of their 1965 absentee percentages. Lastly, studies on absenteeism, made by the leading management associations, were researched for an up to date story on how the problem has been approached by U. S. Industry. More than half of the electronic firms reported that they were dissatisfied with their absentee percentages which proved to be very close to the 4.5 per cent figure. The selected electronic plant studied, revealed that absenteeism ranks as a primary operating problem and that every area of possible solution will continue to be considered for the purpose of maintaining, if not reducing, its present range of absenteeism of 3 per cent to 4.5 per cent. Its Management is convinced that, without the vigorous attention presently afforded the Absentee Control Program, absenteeism might reach as high or higher than 5 per cent. It is the writer's conclusion that the area is a fertile and challenging one for Management action, and presents a literally untouched area for research personnel to establish practical, workable formulas and methods of computing the true cost of absenteeism.


Includes bibliographical references.||Includes illustrations.


x, 111 pages




Northern Illinois University

Rights Statement

In Copyright

Rights Statement 2

NIU theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from Huskie Commons for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without the written permission of the authors.

Media Type