Sickness Absence and Annual Leave Toolkit

This toolkit contains some of the key information you need to manage sickness absence and annual leave.


If you want help to customise the template/s, you may opt to purchase some consultancy time, so as you set the budget, and then one of our team will be in touch to assist.


Why buy this toolkit?

This Sickness Absence & Annual Leave Toolkit contains some of the main resources required for managing sickness absence and annual leave and will help you remain compliant with Northern Ireland legislation. The resources in the toolkit can be readily adapted for use in the rest of the UK.

The toolkit contains the following resources:

  • Return to Work Interview Form Template
  • Manager Return to Work Manager Guidance Template
  • Invite to Wellbeing Meeting for Long Term Absence Template
  • Wellbeing Meeting Agenda Template
  • Invite to Occupational Health Appointment Template
  • Complementary Form Holiday Request Form
    Coming soon – you may also be interested in purchasing our Absence Tracker which enables you to track, manage and report on sickness absence.

The toolkit is correct and up-to-date as of the date of publishing.  The responsibility rests with the purchaser for ensuring the resources are kept up-to-date and in line with employment law as may be amended from time to time. 

Alternatively, should you require additional advice or support or need help to customise the resource/s, please contact us or select the option to purchase consultancy time (which allows you to set the budget upfront) and then one of our team will be in touch to assist.

What are the Documents used for?

This template should be used on each occasion to conduct an informal Return to Work Interview following an employee returns from sickness absence.

This template offers guidance for Managers on how to conduct the Return-to-Work Interview.

This template invite letter can be issued to an employee when inviting to a wellbeing meeting. This is recommended to enable you to explore how the employee is doing, if there are any issues you need to be aware of and any reasonable support required to assist their return to work.

This template offers guidance to Managers as to what to cover during the informal wellbeing meeting.

This template letter can be used to invite the employee to attend an Occupational Health Assessment (when appropriate), so as you can be better informed as to the nature of their condition and any reasonable support or adjustments required.

This complementary form can be used for employees to book leave and help you track individual leave to ensure that employees are managing and taking their holidays against their allocated leave entitlement. We have included two options; 1. a word document version and 2. an excel version depending on your preference.

Further Guidance in respect of sickness absence and annual leave
In respect of sickness absence, you should ensure that you receive either a self-certification or a Statement of Fitness (medical certification) for each occasion. The self-certification form can be found online, and the Statement of Fitness (medical certification) should be provided by the employees GP.

If absence becomes a cause for concern through sporadic short-term absence, we appreciate you may wish to contemplate disciplinary action. Alternatively, in the case of long-term absence, you may wish to consider a capability ill health dismissal. However, if either applies, careful consideration and caution is required, so we advise you to contact us for further guidance to ensure your business remains compliant and to reduce the risk of a discrimination or other claim.

Please get in touch if you require additional resources or HR advice and guidance if you are contemplating implementing more formalised absence related procedures.

In respect of holidays, it is important to check to ensure that employees are not overusing their allowance too early in the year, which can lead to absence management issues later in the year or if they are not taking up their holidays allocation as required in line with the Working Time Directive. If they are not taking leave, it can also create a build-up of excessive holidays depending on whether you allow carry forward of unused leave at the end of each year. If you do allow carry over, you must ensure that the employee has taken the minimum required leave under the Working Time Directive (currently 20 days rather than their statutory legal entitlement to 28 days leave). It can also be expensive, as if the employee leaves, you will need to pay them for any used but accrued leave.

Not sure? If you would like a demo of any of our Toolkits before you buy, please get in touch.

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