Practice Management

16.1 Million Will Miss Work Super Bowl Monday, Millions More Plan to Show Up Late

Open communication among managers, teams, and technology can help build trust and create a great place to work

A new Harris poll conducted on behalf of UKG Workforce Institute, a global think tank of HR practitioners, looks at the far-reaching impact of the Super Bowl on businesses throughout the economy.

February 05, 2024 –(BUSINESS WIRE)–Bring in the backups! An estimated 16.1 million1 U.S. employees plan to miss work the Monday after Super Bowl LVIII, including over 6 million U.S. employees who will risk a workplace penalty for faking sick or “ghosting” work altogether and not showing up. That’s according to new research conducted online by The Harris Poll on behalf of the UKG Workforce Institute, which has tracked absenteeism surrounding the big game for nearly two decades.

Cases of the so-called “Super Bowl Flu” emerge annually across America, with an estimated14.5 million2 employed adults in the U.S. admitting they’ve called in sick to work when they weren’t actually sick on the Monday after the Super Bowl — including over 1 in 10 people managers (11%).

The good news? The number of anticipated Super Bowl Monday absences for 2024 is down slightly from last year, when 18.8 million employees said they planned to miss work. Another positive development for 2024 is about 10 million3 U.S. employees have already requested the day off, which helps their managers and companies better prepare for the game-related absences.

UKG experts caution against any excessive celebrations, though. Despite the lower absentee numbers, about 6.4 million4 U.S. employees also plan to go into work late, another 11.2 million5 employees say they’re “not sure” whether they’ll miss work, and an additional 6.4 million6 employees will decide at the last minute what to do.

These results further underline the need for people leaders to chat with employees early about their Super Bowl time-off plans, to avoid leaving large holes in team coverage across America on Monday morning.

Super Bowl Absentee Survey Stats To Know

  • All in all, 14% of U.S. employees — about 22.5 million7 employees — plan to miss at least some work on Monday following the big game. This includes 1 in 5 people managers.
  • For those scheduled to work Super Bowl Sunday itself, about 3.2 million8 U.S. employees each plan to call in sick or just not show up to work so they can watch the game.
  • More than a quarter of all U.S. employees (28%) — roughly 45.1 million9 employees — say they’ll be less productive than usual at work on Monday after the Super Bowl this year.
  • Over a third of U.S. employees (37%) believe the day after the Super Bowl should be a national holiday.
    Open Communication Builds Trust at Work

With low unemployment and a steady U.S. labor market favoring employees, all signs point to the importance of organizations developing a winning game plan for handling absences, both planned and unexpected — so teams are covered, schedules remain flexible, communication is open and transparent, and employees feel more comfortable requesting, and more confident receiving, time off from work as needed.

Cases of the so-called “Super Bowl Flu” emerge annually across America, with an estimated14.5 million2 employed adults in the U.S. admitting they’ve called in sick to work when they weren’t actually sick on the Monday after the Super Bowl — including over 1 in 10 people managers...

As to why employees would rather risk a penalty than call time out, the UKG survey found that 7% of U.S. employees (about 11.2 million10 employees) — and even 10% of people managers themselves — say they’d be reprimanded by management if they asked to miss work on the Monday after the big game. The findings highlight critical gaps in communication, transparency, and trust in organizations — all of which are key factors in building a great place to work.

As team captains and coaches, people managers must lead by example, especially if they themselves plan to miss work. According to the UKG study:

While 49% of people managers say they plan to ask their employees directly about their time-off plans for the Super Bowl, only 7% of U.S. employees say their manager has actively reached out to see if they were planning to take the day off or come in late the Monday after the big game this year.

What’s more, a mere 5% of managers say they plan to personally notify their team of their own game-related absence. “Like winning teams, successful organizations are built on open communication and trust,” said Dr. Jarik Conrad, vice president of human insights at UKG and executive director of the UKG Workforce Institute. “Trust is the new currency at work, and it pays dividends. We all have lives outside of the workplace — yes, even managers. We need to focus on being more open with one another, communicating our distinct needs and wants, so we know how to best support our teammates and achieve our goals together. Best of all, there are tools and technology to help simplify scheduling, facilitate easy shift-swapping among employees, and even assist managers in starting these impactful conversations. Although Super Bowl Monday isn’t a national holiday, despite popular opinion, we can use cultural moments like this one to keep the conversations going and foster trust, as we work together to create a great place to work for all people.”

 

 

 

About the UKG Workforce Institute
Established in 2007, the UKG Workforce Institute is a global think tank of HR practitioners, researchers, and business leaders dedicated to driving organizational growth and performance through an emphasis on people. Every week, we share original research, data-driven insights, and actionable strategies from our esteemed board members and various industry experts. We’re focused on the key areas of compliance, culture, talent, technology, and wellbeing, how each impacts the workforce, from the frontline to the C-suite, and what organizations can do to best serve their employees across different industries, today and in the future.
About UKG
At UKG, our purpose is people. We are on a mission to inspire every organization to become a great place to work through HCM technology built for all. More than 80,000 customers across all sizes, industries, and geographies trust UKG HR, payroll, workforce management, and culture cloud solutions to drive great workplace experiences and make better, more confident people and business decisions. With the world’s largest collection of people data, work data, and culture data combined with rich experience using artificial intelligence in the service of people, we connect culture insights with business outcomes to show what’s possible when organizations invest in their people. To learn more, visit ukg.com.
Follow the UKG Workforce Institute on LinkedIn. Follow UKG on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, TikTok, X, and YouTube.
Survey Methodology: This survey was conducted online within the United States by The Harris Poll on behalf of UKG from January 10 to January 12, 2024, among 1,192 employed U.S. adults ages 18 and older. The sampling precision of Harris online polls is measured by using a Bayesian credible interval. For this study, the sample data is accurate to within +/- 3.3 percentage points using a 95% confidence level. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables and subgroup sample sizes, please contact media@ukg.com.
Footnote 1: Calculation based on a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics December 2023 report that estimates there are 161,183,000 employed adults in the United States: 161,183,000 x 10% of employed adults who plan to not go to work on the Monday after Super Bowl LVIII = 16,118,300. This includes employees who plan to not go to work either by taking a pre-approved personal day/PTO (6%), calling in sick even if they’re not actually sick (2%), or “ghosting” their employer (2%).
Footnote 2: Calculation based on a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics December 2023 report that estimates there are 161,183,000 employed adults in the United States: 161,183,000 x 9% of employed adults who say they have called in sick to work even if they were not actually sick the Monday after the Super Bowl = 14,506,470.
Footnote 3: Calculation based on a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics December 2023 report that estimates there are 161,183,000 employed adults in the United States: 161,183,000 x 6% of employed adults who say they are taking a pre-approved personal day/PTO on the Monday after the Super Bowl = 9,670,980.
Footnote 4: Calculation based on a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics December 2023 report that estimates there are 161,183,000 employed adults in the United States: 161,183,000 x 4% of employed adults who say they plan to go to work late on the Monday after the Super Bowl = 6,447,320.
Footnote 5: Calculation based on a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics December 2023 report that estimates there are 161,183,000 employed adults in the United States: 161,183,000 x 7% of employed adults who say they say they are not sure about whether they’ll report to work on the Monday after the Super Bowl = 11,282,810.
Footnote 6: Calculation based on a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics December 2023 report that estimates there are 161,183,000 employed adults in the United States: 161,183,000 x 4% of employed adults who say they will decide at the last minute what to do in regard to going to work on the Monday after the Super Bowl = 6,447,320.
Footnote 7: Calculation based on a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics December 2023 report that estimates there are 161,183,000 employed adults in the United States: 161,183,000 x 14% of employed adults who say they plan to not go to work or go to work late on the Monday after the Super Bowl = 22,565,620.
Footnote 8: Calculation based on a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics December 2023 report that estimates there are 161,183,000 employed adults in the United States: 161,183,000 x 2% each of employed adults who say, although they are scheduled to work on Super Bowl Sunday, they plan to call in sick or just not show up so they can watch the game = 3,223,660.
Footnote 9: Calculation based on a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics December 2023 report that estimates there are 161,183,000 employed adults in the United States: 161,183,000 x 28% of employed adults who strongly agree or somewhat agree with the statement “I will be less productive than I normally am at work on the Monday after the Super Bowl this year” = 45,131,240.
Footnote 10: Calculation based on a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics December 2023 report that estimates there are 161,183,000 employed adults in the United States: 161,183,000 x 7% of employed adults who believe they would be reprimanded (e.g., given a warning, put on probation, given extra work) by management if they asked to miss work (either part of the day or the whole day) on the Monday after the Super Bowl = 11,282,810.
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