Been offered a new job-poor sickness record(18 Posts)
I have been put on sickness review in my current job for having some short episodes of sickness. I suffer from depression (have for many years) and the majority of episodes have been due to stress/anxiety related reasons (I have IBS which has flared up at times of anxiety/worry/bereavement).
I have since been back to the GP and my anti depressants have been increased to help with the IBS and general anxiety. This has helped and my sickness record has improved.
Ive just been offered my dream job and am perified its going to be withdrawn due to my sick record can anyone offer any advice?
If asked be honest and explain(briefly) how you positively successfully addressed the problem, explain you see it as a triumphant that you overcame such a challenge and that it taught you that no matter how debilitating a situation, with a positive attitude and some applied determination any problem can be overcome, and that you have taken this lesson and applied it to other challenges that are presented to you.
Yes, be honest. Say that you had XYZ because of ABC but that you have adressed this problem and are now fighting fit and ready for action. You can prove that your sickness record has improved.
I would think that any potential employer would look at this, be happy that you are being honest and open about it, and also realise that some stress illnesses are partly due to the job (the place could be a nightmare).
I have interviewd people and would take the person as I found them, not by any records. The one person I did have a 'mare with was one who had nothing on their record to indicate that they were a bit... 'bothersome'.
Occupational Health? even if they don't have one, they could employ the ad hoc services of one, this would help them in compliance with the Equality Act.
I have a dreadful sick record and have never had a problem. I was very lucky when I changed local authority empolyers to get my OH nurse doing my medical for new job!
This time when I changed jobs, they just wanted to be sure I was working towards dealing with my problems rather than anything else really. I've never been asked about my sick in the actual interview, only in a separate 'fitness to work' interview carried out by an OH nurse. My sick record IS abysmal tbh, starting five years ago with stress (5months), a month off having torn a muscle (badly) three years ago, PND last year, plus the assorted coughs, colds and D&V that comes with having a toddler (she's never ill, just bloody me!).
I try not to worry about it too much tbh, its not deliberate on my part, just unfortunate. My boss referred me to OH when I fell pg this time as I had a difficult pg last time and I had a dreadful first tri this time. The report said 'she wasn't well last time, she's less well this time. She's pg, deal with it' or words to that effect. OH have stopped bothering with me tbh now!
So long as you can show its explainable and you are trying to improve, it shouldn't be any sort of issue.
Well I sent the lady an email explaining I've had a poor sickness record and my underlying depression etc. she replied back thanking me for being honest and said to continue with the recruitment process and that they would get an overall view from occy health before making any decisions. I just hope I get an understanding occy health person!
You don't need OH to be understanding, just to know their job and the job is make work accessible and try not make you the client's condition worse and try and avoid other conditions related to work.
That said we are an understanding lot I am proud that I have a job which is about finding solutions my mantra to HR when they ask is so and so fit..."they are all fit, it is my adaptions you need to worry about"
the only sticking point is that if the employer can't accommodate the adjustments then the job could be a no go, but that again is rare to the point I am not aware this has ever happened with any of the employers I have worked for and believe me I watch the new joiners lists for those I think may be an issue.
An update- it doesn't sound too hopeful for me sadly. I emailed my manager to tell her about my sickness record and she thanked me for my honesty and told me to continue with the recruitment and they would get a view from occupational health before making a decision.
Occy health haven't contacted me but the manager emailed me and said she 'had been thinking about my situation' and it said along the lines of the job is very demanding and best accomplished with the minimum of sickness that they didn't want me to take a temporary post from a secure job and not be able to continue in it etc. I'm thinking she's trying to find a reason to give me the brush off regardless of my occy health report.
Any advice as to what to do now?? I'm desperate for this job
I could be completely wrong here, but as you suffer from chronic depression / anxiety you MAY be covered by the disability discrimination act.
Where I work we never ever ask about sickness because we're not qualified to make a judgment on an individual's capability. We request a confidential medical questionnaire is completed and sent directly to occupational health after a job offer is made. We then wait for occupational health to advise that the candidate is cleared or if anything comes up, they do a full assessment on the candidate after which we receive a report providing recommendations on adaptations we should make if we can reasonably accommodate them.
I have a member of staff with a chronic condition and the adaptation recommended was that she should be allowed to work from home when necessary to reduce the risk of flare ups or negating her need to drive when her joints are painful. We had no problem accommodating this. It's worked well and she's only had two occasions of absence totalling 4 days during her first year of employment, which hasn't negatively impacted on the department.
In my limited knowledge, I don't think the employer can make the decision that you aren't capable until after an medical assessment.
Stand your ground OP. Since the Equality Act the employer can't just withdraw a job offer because they don't like your sickness record. Only if your condition means you literally can't do the job, and no adjustments can be made. The OH person should know this and advise accordingly. Don't allow the manager to pressure you into accepting that you should withdraw either.
Thanks for the advice everyone, anyone else whos experienced similar or work in the NHS particularly human resources i'd love to hear your experience
I had a not dissimilar situation but the info went directly to OH who didn't pass it on to anyone else, and there was no question about be not getting the job. And actually, my health has improved no end in the new environment - to the point where one of my colleagues commented yesterday, 'oh, GrendelsMum, you're always so healthy'. I was but didn't disagree.
Update- I went for an appointment with occy health Thursday. A nice lady just went through a few questions with me, then said she wasn't concerned and was passing me as fit.
I then went to work on the night shift and was never so happy to be woke up by the phone at 10.30am from my new manager saying I could hand my notice in now
Thanks for everyone's help I'm so happy x
Thank you so glad I'm not just being written off due to having a long term illness
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