A problem that is becoming more common in practices across the country is “Ghosting.” For those who are not familiar with the term, I hope it is because it hasn’t happened to you. But for far too many practice owners and managers, the employee “no show, no call” is becoming a harsh reality. So, what can be done to avoid it (or at least to cover our butts when it does)?

 

The answer lies within your Employee Handbook/Personnel Policy in a specific job abandonment policy of which until recently I felt could be derived from the Practice Attendance/Punctuality or Calling in Sick sections. I guess I was wrong. . . 

 

Clearly spelling out to your employees that not showing up or communicating with the practice for a period of X days will signify voluntary resignation due to job abandonment is key. It may also serve as the key to denial of unemployment benefits for the ghost staff member (this will vary from state to state, but no matter what, you should include this as part of your policy). Always have your employees sign and date that they have read and understand your practice policies and as updates are made, have them sign and date again.  

 

Following determination of “ghosting”, you must make the termination official by mailing a certified letter to the employee. 

 

A sample job abandonment policy (to add to your existing Employee Handbook/Personnel Policy or as an addendum) and termination due to job abandonment letter are now available in the PEP library along with several examples of complete Employee Handbooks and Personnel Policies. You’re welcome

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