THE economy lost 34654 jobs last month‚ human resources company Adcorp said in its latest employment index yesterday.
The biggest job losses were recorded for permanent jobs‚ with sharp losses observed in mining‚ construction‚ transport and financial services‚ amounting to 26000 job losses between them.
The index also showed that this year‚ 3.96-million workers were absent due to sickness during the year‚ up from 0.7-million in 2000‚ according to Adcorp. "Due to the unplanned and unpredictable nature of sick leave‚ the knock-on disruptive effect on supply chains has probably been greater than these figures suggest‚" Adcorp Holdings labour economist Loane Sharp said.
It might have led‚ in part‚ to the growing phenomenon of temporary or "contingency" workers‚ many of whom fill in for other employees who are absent from work, he said.
Adcorp research showed that between 2009 and 2011‚ a quarter of all workers claimed the maximum statutory allowance for sick leave which was 36 days in a three-year cycle.
The index also showed that sickness-related absenteeism had increased four-fold since 2007‚ with significant costs to the economy.
"Cumulatively‚ since 2000‚ the economy has lost R55.2-billion in real terms due to sickness‚" Adcorp said.
The company said in genuine cases of illness‚ the workplace and the nature of the work itself might be implicated in absenteeism. In false cases‚ the take-up of statutory maximum sick leave allowances was a function of how generous those allowances were‚ and the degree to which absenteeism was monitored and controlled.
"It is alarming that sick leave in South Africa has been rising continuously over the past decade‚ and at present shows no signs of reversing‚" Sharp said. – BDlive