US job site CareerBuilder recently published a list of outrageous excuses workers have told their employers when calling in sick.
The national survey was conducted out of a sample of 3,484 workers and 2,099 hiring managers and human resource professionals, found that three in ten employees go to work sick to save sick days for when they’re feeling well.
The research found that nearly one third (32%) of workers have called in sick when not actually ill, up slightly from 2012 (30%).
Twenty percent of workers said in the past year they called in sick but still ended up doing work from home throughout the day.
Almost a third of employers said that they have checked in on employees who have called in sick to make sure the excuse was legitimate.
Of those who verified employees’ excuses over the past year, 64% required a doctor’s note, 48% called the employee, 19% checked the employee’s social media posts, 17% had another employee call the sick employee, and 15% drove past the employee’s house.
As many as 16% of respondents said they have sacked employees for calling in sick with a fake excuse.
The most common reason employees take sick days is because they just didn’t feel like going to work (33%), or they needed to relax (28%). Others spend their sick days going to the doctor (24%), catching up on sleep (19%), or running personal errands (14%).
Employers reported the following real-life examples of outrageous excuses:
- Employee’s false teeth flew out the window while driving down the highway;
- Employee’s favorite football team lost on Sunday so needed Monday to recover;
- Employee was quitting smoking and was grouchy;
- Employee said that someone glued her doors and windows shut so she couldn’t leave the house to come to work;
- Employee bit her tongue and couldn’t talk;
- Employee claimed a swarm of bees surrounded his vehicle and he couldn’t make it in;
- Employee said the chemical in turkey made him fall asleep and he missed his shift;
- Employee felt like he was so angry he was going to hurt someone if he came in;
- Employee’s fake eye was falling out of its socket;
- Employee got lost and ended up in another state;
- Employee couldn’t decide what to wear