Pretty much any job you work has some sort of attendance policy that covers sick time, vacation time, and generally how the company handles any sort of absence.
UPS is no different- so what is UPS’ attendance policy, and what do you need to know about it? If you’d like to find out, keep reading!
What Is UPS’ Attendance Policy In 2023?
UPS doesn’t have a formal attendance policy in 2023. While there are some rules regarding unnotified absences and sick time, there’s little to be found in writing. According to former and current employees, sick time accrued varies depending on seniority, but you typically get 5 sick days per year. For excessive absences, there must be progressive discipline before termination.
If you’re a current, former, or potential employee of UPS looking for some solid information about how attendance is handled, or are just curious about the UPS attendance policy, read on!
How Many Days Can You Miss Working at UPS?
Because there is no formal, standardized attendance policy in writing for UPS, it’s difficult to know what the attendance expectation is.
Like all jobs, UPS expects you to show up, but what if you can’t?
According to several forums, such as Brown Cafe, the number of days you can miss will largely depend on the hub you’re working in and your supervisor, and your reasons for missing work.
The UPS Employee Handbook goes into great detail about how sick time is accrued, but the parameters for time off being considered sick time is also up in the air.
Per the UPS Handbook, this is the policy for “infectious diseases,” aka the flu, a cold, etc:
“If you have been in contact with a notifiable infectious disease unless otherwise instructed by your medical adviser, you should report for work and inform your manager…
If a doctor certifies that it’s necessary for you to stay away from work owing to the risk of infection, this must be done, but you must inform your manager and forward a doctor’s statement supporting the absence.”
For other illnesses, which are not qualified or defined by the company handbook in any capacity, there exists a Company Sick Pay Policy.
This policy is as follows:
- Any employee who is absent on sick or medical leave may be asked to cooperate in a medical assessment as appropriate/provide medical documentation supporting any and all absences
- All employees whose terms are subject to a collective agreement require 12 months’ continuous service to be eligible for Company Sick Pay (CSP)
- UPS may extend CSP to cover employees still in their probationary period only in cases of absence caused by industrial injury
- Nothing shall fetter UPS’ discretion as to whether or not it decides to exercise its discretion in relation to eligibility for discretionary CSP
- Qualifying employees who have worked for UPS for a year can receive 13 weeks maximum of CSP
- Qualifying employees who have worked for UPS for 1 to 5 years can receive 26 weeks maximum of CSP
- Qualifying employees who have worked for UPS for 5 or more years can receive 52 weeks maximum of CSP
CSP seems to be an extremely elusive program, however and is not to be confused with a typical sick time policy.
According to many UPS employees, CSP is typically only extended to employees who were hurt or became ill at the fault of UPS, or for employees who receive diagnoses such as cancer.
Additionally, there is no solid evidence of there being a policy in place for standard sick leave, but most employee forums seem to indicate that you can use a maximum of 5 days per year.
For non-health-related absences, UPS seems to operate by an informal rule of thumb:
employees are expected to maintain an absence rate below 4% of their scheduled workdays in any rolling 200 workday period.
What Happens If You Miss Work at UPS?
What happens when you miss work largely depends on how you handle/communicate the absence and what you’re missing work for.
As a general rule, there are a few different types of missing work:
- Scheduled time off
- Same-day call outs
- No call no show
It seems to be that if you communicate the anticipated absence as much in advance as possible, most supervisors will just try and find someone to cover your shift.
This is especially the case when it comes to scheduled time off.
All UPS employees that are past their probationary period accrue paid time off at a rate consistent with their tenure with the company.
If you are planning an absence in advance, whether it is for a vacation, doctor’s appointment, or any other reason, you will typically be required to take PTO to cover the absence.
If you don’t have PTO available to use and there is a good reason for the absence, then the company will typically allow you to take unpaid time off.
To request time off in advance, simply supply your supervisor with the dates you will be unavailable and what type of time you’ll be taking off (paid/unpaid).
In some situations, the supervisor may decline the request due to scheduling issues or a lack of staff.
However, this is rare and typically can be worked around, depending on the supervisor or situation.
Of course, you don’t always have advanced notice for when you’re going to need to take time off of work, which is where same-day call-outs and no-call no-show absences come in.
Same-day call-outs are typically the result of an illness or emergency.
Again, the best thing you can do is let your manager or supervisor know as soon as possible what is happening to avoid potential conflict or confusion.
No-call no-show absences are an entirely different animal, however.
If you miss a scheduled shift without providing notice that you won’t be there, many employers will see the absence as a forfeiture of your position and proceed as if you quit.
UPS doesn’t typically handle no-call no-show absences this way.
However, as no-call no-shows are easily avoidable by communicating as quickly as possible, this situation is definitely not a good one to be in.
If there is a legitimate reason for an undocumented absence, it should be communicated as soon as possible with your supervisor.
UPS’ current policy states that if an employee misses a shift without notification and doesn’t provide a valid reason within three days, UPS moves forward as if the employee quit.
Can UPS Fire You for Being Late or Calling in Sick?
Everyone gets sick or is late to their shift every once and a while, and UPS employees are no different.
But, given how focused UPS can be on efficiency, will you be fired for one of these offenses?
The answer is a bit convoluted and depends heavily on the circumstances in question.
If you call in sick or are late for a shift once or twice (or even more if you have a valid reason and a good supervisor), it is unlikely you will be fired.
Being consistently late or absent from your position will certainly carry more serious repercussions.
However, UPS cannot outright fire you over a single instance due to its policy on progressive disciplinary action.
The steps of UPS’ progressive disciplinary action policy are as follows:
- Verbal warning
- Written warning
- Final written warning coupled with a decrease in pay, demotion, or transfer
- Dismissal, either with or without notice
There are some exceptions to UPS’ policy on progressive disciplinary action, and engaging in any one or a number of these behaviors will have you fired on the spot:
- The fraudulent recording of start and/or finish times for another employee.
- Leaving work without permission.
- Being at work whilst under the influence of alcohol or illicit drugs/substances.
- Consuming alcohol or illicit drugs/substances during the working day on or off company premises.
- Theft, fraudulent activity, or dishonesty committed inside or outside work, whether or not the victim is the company, a customer, or a fellow employee.
- Deliberate or calculated misuse of, damage, or violence against any employee or property of the company or of any customer (whether or not committed during working hours).
- Abusive, threatening, violent, bullying, disrespectful, or objectionable behavior towards workers, employees, customers, or suppliers.
- Acts of incitement, harassment, victimization, or discrimination on the grounds of a person’s gender, sexual orientation, marital/civil partnership status, gender, color, race, nationality, ethnic/national origins, religion or belief, disability, or age.
- Taking other paid employment whilst receiving pay or other benefits from the company during a period of sickness or absence.
- Disclosure of confidential information to a competitor (either directly or indirectly).
- Unauthorized disclosure or use of confidential information.
- Reckless disregard of health and safety precautions, procedures, and regulations.
- A material and serious failure, a repeated failure, or a willful failure to follow company policies, documentary procedures, or regulations.
- A conviction for a criminal offense or reasonable suspicion of the employee committing a criminal offense which renders the individual unsuitable for employment or unacceptable to other employees, or likely to bring the company into disrepute.
- Allowing unauthorized persons in company vehicles.
- Being ‘off route’ without company approval.
- Gross insubordination or refusal to cooperate by failing to carry out reasonable instructions.
- Unauthorized use of company equipment or property.
- Failure to keep a company vehicle or its load secure.
- Accessing, viewing, downloading, or transmitting illegal or inappropriate material using the company’s email or internet facilities.
- Posting confidential, offensive, defamatory, discriminatory, or inappropriate comments about the company or any of its clients, customers, suppliers, employees, directors, consultants, or other staff on social networking websites.
- Covertly recording other employees, clients, customers, or suppliers without their consent or the consent of the company.
- Acting in a manner which, in the reasonable opinion of the company, brings the company into disrepute or otherwise prejudices, or is considered likely to prejudice the reputation of the company.
UPS does not have a standardized attendance policy, which is unusual for a business of its size, but there are some general rules of thumb you can follow to ensure your job security.
In general, UPS allows employees approximately 5 sick days per year, although you may accrue more or less depending on your seniority within the company.