Should you get paid a sickie bonus?

Should you get paid a sickie bonus?

Apparently, it’s now so hard to get construction workers in the Northern Territory some employers are paying staff a $100 a week bonus not to take sickies. The Northern Territory News reports that paying money to ensure people don’t take Monday off for fishing or drinking has proved necessary to prevent a labour shortage. Is this supply and demand in action, a sensible compromise, or an assault on the time-honoured Aussie sickie tradition? Let us know what you think — and any good sickie deals you’ve managed — in the comments.
NT workers’ no-sickie bonus


  • Anyone who thinks that this is “an assault on the time-honoured Aussie sickie tradition” should be sacked.

    Sick days are for people who are sick – not as extra holidays. The idea that people should go fishing on these days is appalling.

  • All my working life I’ve always been of the school of “If you’re sick, your sick… if your not sick, you go to work”… In fact, like many people I probably go to work even when I AM sick and should probably stay home.

    One thing that peeve’s me off greatly is that a group of unionised workers at our site have an agreement in the EBA that lets them sell unused sick days back to the company at double time rates. Nice for them. Bloody marvelous for them actually. But really annoying to me with nearly 12 weeks of accumulated sick leave that’s really worth NOTHING to me. Great reward for showing up EVERY day thru thick and thin, rain and shine.

    And companies wonder why people decide to “chuck a sickie” and abuse the system…

  • If I ran a business where absenteeism was a problem, i’d offer bonuses based on productivity.

    The most productive workers over some short-ish period of time (2-4 weeks perhaps?) would get a cash bonus.

    I’m not buying someones sick days off them – I’d like them to feel that if they’re genuinely sick the business will look after them a bit.

    But that being said – if the work gets done on time and efficiently, I don’t care if they’re only in the office 1 day a week.

    Obviously in some jobs – as is the example for a labourer, hours spent on site very much correlate with productivity, office jobs could potentially have some components done at home though.

  • It’s positive reinforcement, which may work in the short term (though I like Mr. Crash’s idea of productivity based rewards, not behaviour based) but then what happens when you try and take that bonus away? Unions get involved, labourers take the Mondays off again to prove a point, etc.

  • I think I have sick days available (fairly new position) but I still come to work if I can do my job adequately… But with anything infectious you should STAY THE F*** HOME. That’s how epidemics happen, goddammit.

    Perforated eardrum (me, the last two days) = go to work if you aren’t a headphone tester or something.
    Flu or something similar = STAY HOME or your coworkers get to punch you every time you cough or sneeze, okay?

    Maybe I sound a bit harsh but jeez, use sick days for what they’re for. :/

    – Matthew

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