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Kronos: Employee absence costs companies large percentage of base payroll

BY CSA STAFF

Orlando, Fla. Employee absence costs organizations the equivalent of 36% of their base payroll on average, according to a new survey of employers conducted by human-resource consulting firm Mercer and sponsored by Kronos.

This total includes both planned absences, such as vacations and holidays, as well as unplanned absences, such as sick days and disability leaves. Unplanned employee absences cost organizations the equivalent of 9% of their base payroll on average, more than half the cost of healthcare benefits, measured at 15.4% of payroll in Mercer’s 2007 National Survey of Employer-Sponsored Health Plans.

This study aims to identify the total costs of absence, including both the direct costs — wages paid to employees while absent — and the indirect costs — lost productivity and replacement costs of workers.

Unplanned incidental absences, such as casual sick days, result in the highest net lost productivity per day — work that is missed or postponed by not being covered by others, the report sound. Survey respondents estimated that when employees are out on unplanned absences, they sustain a loss in productivity of 21%, compared with just 15% for planned absences.

“The cost of absenteeism is often misunderstood, seen as un-measurable or dismissed as negligible,” said Toni Kellam, absence management consultant at Kronos. “While most other expenses for an organization have clearly defined costs, employee absence is loosely tracked, and the tracking is not thorough enough to reveal the full costs.”

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Forever 21 hits the big time

BY CSA STAFF

Fast-fashion retailer Forever 21 on Friday opened its 91,257,-sq.-ft., four-level flagship store in Manhattan’s Time Square amid much fanfare and hundreds of fans lined up around the corner to get in. Its opening makes it the largest single-brand apparel store in Manhattan.

The doors opened at 10 a.m., but many shoppers took their place in line many hours before. The store’s regular hours will be from 8 a.m. to 2 a.m., allowing tourists to shop the store into the late hours of the night.

When shoppers finally entered the store on Friday, dozens of employees yelled, clapped and welcomed each person as though they were a celebrity. The star-treatment continued on each of the four floors when shoppers stepped off of the escalator.

To celebrate the launch, Forever21 featured a live DJ, a free manicure booth and gave shoppers an exclusive Forever21 Times Square location tote bag.

The store — which occupies part of the space formerly occupied Virgin Megastore — boasts a clean, sleek look and features a yellow taxicab and other icons of Manhattan throughout the space. It also houses all the company’s brands in store-within-a-store departments.

Other features include a Stud Room, whose walls are covered with 3,000 gold studs (the area features studded apparel) and the kids’ department, complete with tree house and glass jars filled everything from marbles to gumballs. Lingerie is displayed in a feminine setting, enhanced with lavender walls, crystal chandeliers and cabbage rose-wallpaper. There are some 150 fitting rooms.

Sales projections for the flagship’s first year are expected to surpass $100 million.

With nearly 500 stores, Forever 21 still has plenty of room for expansion in the United States, where it sees the potential for some 1,000 locations. The chain also is thinking globally, and has opened stores in Japan and China. It will enter Europe by yearend, with locations in the United Kingdom (in Framingham) and Dublin.

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Forever 21 hits the big time

BY CSA STAFF

Fast-fashion retailer Forever 21 on Friday opened its 91,257,-sq.-ft., four-level flagship store in Manhattan’s Time Square amid much fanfare and hundreds of fans lined up around the corner to get in. Its opening makes it the largest single-brand apparel store in Manhattan.

The doors opened at 10 a.m., but many shoppers took their place in line many hours before. The store’s regular hours will be from 8 a.m. to 2 a.m., allowing tourists to shop the store into the late hours of the night.

When shoppers finally entered the store on Friday, dozens of employees yelled, clapped and welcomed each person as though they were a celebrity. The star-treatment continued on each of the four floors when shoppers stepped off of the escalator.

To celebrate the launch, Forever21 featured a live DJ, a free manicure booth and gave shoppers an exclusive Forever21 Times Square location tote bag.

The store — which occupies part of the space formerly occupied Virgin Megastore — boasts a clean, sleek look and features a yellow taxicab and other icons of Manhattan throughout the space. It also houses all the company’s brands in store-within-a-store departments.

Other features include a Stud Room, whose walls are covered with 3,000 gold studs (the area features studded apparel) and the kids’ department, complete with tree house and glass jars filled everything from marbles to gumballs. Lingerie is displayed in a feminine setting, enhanced with lavender walls, crystal chandeliers and cabbage rose-wallpaper. There are some 150 fitting rooms.

Sales projections for the flagship’s first year are expected to surpass $100 million.

With nearly 500 stores, Forever 21 still has plenty of room for expansion in the United States, where it sees the potential for some 1,000 locations. The chain also is thinking globally, and has opened stores in Japan and China. It will enter Europe by yearend, with locations in the United Kingdom (in Framingham) and Dublin.

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