The Bradford Factor is a method of managing and tracking absences, and identifying problem areas. It is based upon the idea that many short absences are a lot more disruptive to the workplace than one longer absence.
The Bradford Factor has been used since the 80s, and although nobody seems certain it is generally believed to have been pioneered by the Bradford University School of Management, hence its name.
The formula for the Bradford Factor is as follows:
B = AČ x D
B = the Bradford Factor Rating
A = the number of independent absence periods over the time period.
D = the total number of days absence during the time period.
One absence of 10 days would have a Bradford Factor of 10 (1 x 1 x 10)
Five absences of 2 days each would have a Bradford Factor of 250 (5 x 5 x 10)
Ten absences of 1 day each would have a Bradford Factor of 1000 (10 x 10 x 10)
As you can see from the above examples, the formula is weighted heavily to represent the disruption that is caused by frequent, short absences such as ‘sickies’.
Focus Software from HR Industries creates Bradford Factor reports for you, over any time period or employee group you choose.
Bradford Factor reports can be used in a number of ways. You may wish to set a 'trigger' amount, a number that if reached will action a meeting or even disciplinary action with the employee. You can also use Bradford Factor ratings to assist in back to work interviews after absences, and as part of an employee's development meeting or pay review.
The Bradford Factor is not meant to be a one-stop solution to identifying problem members of staff, but rather one tool, to be used in conjunction with others, that if used well can make an effective contribution.