Two years ago, 49% of the employees at Chicago's main 911 call center were on some type of absences related to FMLA. That led to a scheduling nightmare and runaway overtime costs.
But a crackdown this year on FMLA abuse has reduced employees' FMLA usage by 4,000 hours, cut absenteeism by 900 shifts and slashed overtime cost by $800k. How?
"We instituted a systematic review to identify trends. Once we see a trend, we sit down with the employee to let them know we're seeing a trend (and ask) 'Is there something behind that?'" Alicia Tat-Nadeau, director of the 911 center, told the Chicago Sun-Times.
Among the typical employees pulled in for review: those who frequently took leave on Fridays and Saturdays, as well as around holidays and sporting events.
One other key tactic: manager...