Government urged to introduce relief for small employers for recovery of statutory sick pay (SSP)
2nd November 2011
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Helen Grover of "360 Human Resources" in Warwick is an expert in providing advice and services for local businesses regarding the management and handling of Staff related issues. 

The Government has been urged to introduce a small employer's relief for the recovery of statutory sick pay (SSP), as figures from the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) show sickness absence costs small businesses on average £1,500 per year.

Long-term sickness absence does not affect the smallest of businesses frequently, but when it does it has a big impact and the costs can be high. The FSB's 'Voice of Small Business' survey panel shows on average small businesses only experience 2.4 days sickness absence per employee each year - much lower than the national average 7.7 days per employee - 25% said that they experienced no sickness absence at all and 81 per cent said that they were not at all affected by long-term sickness absence.

But in the last 12 months sickness absence cost firms on average £1,500, but for nine per cent it cost more than £5,000. So it is important that the Government does more to help with the costs of sickness absence in the smallest firms


The FSB is calling on the Government to introduce a small employer's relief for all firms with an annual National Insurance Contributions bill of less than £45,000 to recover SSP. This relief would be like that used for reclaiming statutory maternity pay and would use the same calculations. As a result, it would ease the administrative burden, as well as helping businesses manage sickness absence better.

Small firms care about their staff and want to invest in their health where they can. However, Government must understand the pressures small firms are under, and that this is one pressure among many.


John Walker, national chairman, Federation of Small Businesses: "Small firms act like a tight knit family and value the contribution their staff bring to the business. And research shows that staff in smaller firms are more often committed and loyal. But sickness absence is one of the most complex pieces of employment law they have to deal with. It can also be costly with small businesses paying around £1,500 over the past 12months. The Government must provide a small employers relief for statutory sick pay in the same way they do for statutory maternity pay so those small businesses that experience a member of staff on long-term sickness absence, are not hampered and are given the support they need."


Helen Grover from 360 Human Resources said: "Small Businesses can take some small easy practical steps to help relieve the burden of managing absence and ensure they are protecting both the employee and the business". 360 Human Resources Ltd provides HR support to businesses in and around the Warwick and Leamington Spa area: For more information click here.

About the Author

Stuart T

Member since: 9th July 2012

I'm a keen guitar player & musician who plays in our family band. Our highlight so far was playing to 10,000 people at Fairports Cropredy Convention in 2010 & featuring on Bob Harris's Sky Arts prog.

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