Survey outlines why construction workers time off work sick

A recent survey by insurance company, There, has outlined that construction workers take more time off sick as a result of serious work-related injuries than many other sectors.

Of the respondents, 38 per cent said that they had taken days off ill as a result of a major injury which happened at work, 30 per were off work, as a result of a work-related injury, for a month or more. This figure represents a much larger percentage than the average of just 19 per cent.

According to the survey, the only sector which had a higher percentage of work-related injuries was transport, at 47 per cent.

Of the 20 industries in the survey, construction was found to have the 4th highest percentage of seeing time off work as a weakness.

43 per cent of the respondents said that they needed to take a day off work sick but did not feel like they could do so as their manager would not understand. The same percentage reported feeling guilty for taking time off for injuries or illness.

Marketing Manager of There, Philippa McLaglen, said of the findings:

“Our research shows that construction is a hard working industry that feels the pressure when having to take time off work and doesn’t do so lightly.”

It was reported that 40 per cent of employees dread ringing their manager to notify them that they are ill and 25 per cent admitted to putting on a ‘sick voice’ when ringing to let their employer know that they are not coming into work. Further to this, 27 per cent said that they get their partner or parent to make the call on their behalf.

Construction employees take an average of 2.8 days off ill per year, a close percentage to that of the national average – 2.5. This figure places the construction sector as the 10th highest for the amount of days taken off ill.

Amongst the construction workers, stomach bugs and the flu was the most likely cause of time off, whereas headaches and migraines were the illnesses construction workers were least likely to take time off work for (6 per cent). On the other hand, 28 per cent of those who work in the voluntary and healthcare sectors take time off work as a result of headaches and migraines.

Average amount of days taken ill across industries

Leisure, Cultural and Sporting Activities 3.8
Agriculture 3.7
Research 3.44
Telecoms 3.35
Marketing (e.g. Advertising, Public Relations and Consultancy) 3.2
Education (Teachers, Lecturers) 3.17
Health (Nurses, General Practitioners, Social Workers) 3.09
Design (e.g. Fashion, Graphic Design, Product Design) 3.05
Media and Publishing 3.01
Construction 2.8
Finance (e.g. Banking, Insurance, Accountancy) 2.72
Computing, Electronics 2.72
Environmental Services (e.g. Sustainability, Recycling, Alternative Energy) 2.71
Government, Public Services 2.63
Engineering 2.52
Travel and Tourism 2.5
Utilities (e.g. Gas, Electricity) 2.44
Entertainment (e.g. Music, Film, Theatre) 2.32
Hospitality (e.g. Accommodation, Restaurants, Fast Food) 2.23
Retail 2.2
Transport and Distribution 1.94
Legal 1.9
Voluntary Sector (e.g. Charities, Membership Organisations) 1.87
Property 1.73
Industry (e.g. Manufacturing, Heavy Industry) 1.59