The total absence due to illness within Volvo’s Swedish operations amounted in 2003 to 5.3%, a decline of 0.7 percentage points compared with 2002, based on current statistics from the Volvo Group.
Volvo has a total of 26,000 employees in Sweden and is one of the country’s largest private employers. For a succession of years, Volvo has invested major resources in efforts to reduce absenteeism due to illness in the Group’s companies. Within the project entitled “A healthy working life,” the Group has measured the costs of absence due to illness since 1999 using a so-called fitness index. Since the first measurement in the first quarter of 1999, costs have declined by a full 26%. Now, current statistics show that absence due to illness is also declining measured in the number of hours absent.
“It is extremely pleasing that our efforts yield such clearly measurable results,” says Volvo CEO Leif Johansson. “Declining absenteeism due to illness means lower costs, for Volvo as well as society as a whole. Our goal is also that Volvo becomes a better company to work at, which is decisive if we are to compete on the global market.”
Statistics on absence due to illness in Sweden are based on the number of hours worked within the Volvo Group’s various business areas and business units in the country. The Group comprises eight business areas, of which six have operations in Sweden, and a number of business units, such as Volvo IT, Volvo Logistics, Volvo Parts and others. “A healthy working life” is a broad-based effort that comprises a number of activities within the health and fitness area. Within the framework of the program, efforts have been made to deal with issues ranging from drug problems to stress exhaustion, or burn-out. A key element of the program is education, teaching managers and employees to recognize signs of illness.
April 27, 2004
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