Implement a phased return to work from sickness absence

Key points

  • Doctors often recommend that employers implement a phased return to work in relation to absent employees who are well enough to carry out some work and likely to recover sufficiently to return to their role. A phased return could be a "reasonable adjustment" where an employee has a disability under the Equality Act 2010. In any event, it can be beneficial for both the employer and the employee when trying to achieve a successful return to work.
  • A phased return to work will involve a change to the employee's normal working hours, for example two days a week, building up to five over an agreed period of time. The employer will need to consider the impact of the reduced hours on the employee's pay.
  • The employer should set up and record targets for the phased return and when the work will be stepped up, and then monitor the employee's progress throughout the return-to-work period.

XpertHR resources