Factors impacting employee absenteeism and the managers’ perception of its causes in the hotel industry

The economic viability and success of a hotel depend on the optimisation of all resources, including human resources (HR). Absenteeism is an occurrence that can have a significantly negative impact on optimising HR in South African hotels in the Gauteng province. The objective of this study is to identify the factors that contribute to employee absenteeism, as well as describing the hotel employers’ perceptions of employee absenteeism. A quantitative research approach was followed in this study. A survey questionnaire was developed in order to collect data from 13 establishments, with a 3-star to 5-star grading, in the Gauteng province. The findings reveal that absenteeism is mainly due to family responsibilities, including childcare. Other causes identified were strikes, fatigue, transport problems and genuine illness. It is evident from the findings that delivery of quality services can be affected negatively, due to abuse of sick leave and the cost associated with absenteeism. The results of this research project will contribute by creating an awareness of the negative impact that absenteeism has on the hotel and what employers could do to improve employee attendance.

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