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If You Get Caught Sleeping At Work

Caught Sleeping During Working Hours – What Employers & Employees Should Do Next

If there is one thing an employee can do that will really piss off a boss it is falling asleep while on the clock. Now clearly there can be an occasional reasonable explanation such as a sick family member or situation of that nature that could give justifiable cause for a short snooze while at work, but typically when an employee catches z’s at work it equals big trouble. Although there may be a variety of reasons why a person may hit the hay while on the job there is no denying that it can impact a company’s bottom line, productivity, and more. With over 50% of American workers admitting to sleeping on the job, many employers are turning to GPS tracking to help create accountability after the time card has been punched. In this article, we will discuss what employers and employees should do in regard to disciplinary actions for sleeping on the job. Let’s dive in!

Employee Sleep at Work
15 Ways to Spot Employee Sleep at Work

15 Ways To Find Out If My Employees Are Sleeping At Work

  1. Keep an eye out for employees who consistently appear drowsy, lethargic, or unresponsive during work hours.
  2. Observe employees during their shifts, especially during quiet times or low activity periods, to see if they appear to be sleeping or nodding off.
  3. Consider installing surveillance cameras or motion detectors in areas where employees are known to sleep or rest during work hours.
  4. Train people managers and supervisors to be aware of signs of employee fatigue, and to address concerns with their team members in a timely and sensitive manner.
  5. Invest in leadership development programs that emphasize the importance of promoting employee well-being and creating a positive work culture.
  6. Make sure employees are aware of any immediate danger or safety risks associated with sleeping on the job, and the potential consequences of gross misconduct.
  7. Be sensitive to medical issues that may cause employees to feel excessively tired or fall asleep at work. Consider offering accommodations or adjusting work schedules to address these concerns.
  8. Ensure that employees are taking appropriate breaks and using their allocated break times to rest or sleep- if needed.
  9. Have a clear disciplinary procedure in place for employees who are found to be sleeping on the job, including specific grounds for disciplinary action.
  10. Review employment contracts to ensure that they include language related to sleeping on the job, disciplinary procedures, and grounds for termination.
  11. Ascertain the reason for an employee’s behavior before taking any disciplinary action, as there may be underlying medical or personal issues that need to be addressed.
  12. Stay up-to-date with HR news and industry best practices related to employee well-being, fatigue management, and workplace safety.
  13. Recognize the potential impact of sleep cycles and the gender pay gap on employee fatigue and productivity.
  14. Consider offering employee benefits such as flexible work arrangements, wellness programs, or access to sleep resources to promote overall well-being and reduce the risk of employee fatigue and sleeping on the job.
  15. By placing a GPS device on the vehicle of an employee who works outside of the office an employer will know every place that employee traveled and whether or not suspicious parking stops were made. A GPS fleet tracker will let the employer know if an employee decided to make a stop at home, or at a random parking lot to catch a catnap.

People experiencing consistent tiredness while on the job should consult a doctor in case a more serious problem may exist.

Click here to find out if your boss is tracking your vehicle!

Employee Sleeping At Work

How To You Deal With An Employee Sleeping At Work – 3 Strike Policy

If you are an employer or manager who has caught an employee sleeping on duty you might wonder what the best course of action might be to address the situation. The first step you will want to do is go over any employee handbooks, which typically address every work situation from an employee with an unprofessional appearance to one taking a nap on the job. If there are no established protocols in place for dealing with an employee who fell asleep while on the clock, you should consider a 3-strike policy. What does that look like? Let us explain.

First-Time Offense: Give The Employee A Verbal Warning

Maybe your employee has sleep apnea, maybe they lost an hour of sleep from a time change, or maybe they have some personal/family issues. Either way, if this is a first-time offense, then it is best to manage with compassion.

Second Offense: Give The Employee A Written Warning

A large percentage of respondents who have worked for the same company for 5+ years have stated they have fallen asleep on the job. It happens, but if it is a pattern of behavior then it is important to formally document the incident with a written warning.

Third Offense: Consider Stronger Disciplinary Action

If a good employee gets a little shuteye on accident or for personal reasons it can be overlooked, but a clear and consistent pattern of power napping is simply unacceptable. This is where you might consider researching employment laws in your area if you want to terminate the employee.

Related Article: Best GPS Vehicle Tracking Systems For Employee Monitoring

Rights Employees Who Were Caught Asleep At Work

So you got caught sleeping on job time. Not good. But don’t start writing that resume just yet because an employee falls asleep at work that does not necessarily mean they are automatically fired. According to Career Trend, if you were caught sleeping at work, it’s important to take action to address the situation. Why? Sleeping on the job is unprofessional and can impact productivity and safety.

The first thing you need to do is review your company’s employee handbook or employment contract to understand the policies related to sleeping on duty. If you’re found to be sleeping on the job, disciplinary action could include verbal or written warnings, suspension, or in extreme cases, termination of employment. Yeah, so you better have a really good excuse ready for your manager. And what’s a good excuse? Having a medical condition that could have an impact on sleep.

I you have a medical condition such as sleep apnea, you may have rights under the law. Employers are required to make reasonable accommodations for employees with medical conditions. Consider speaking with your people manager or HR representative to discuss any concerns you may have. But remember, the most important thing is to take responsibility for your behavior and to work towards addressing any underlying issues that may be contributing to your fatigue or sleeping on the job.

Remember to stay up-to-date with HR news and regulations to stay informed of policies and best practices. If you’re feeling tired, take a break or power nap during allocated break times. If you’re struggling with sleep issues, talk to your doctor and seek treatment.

Employee Sleeping While At Work

Frequently Asked Questions

What Can I Do If I Catch An Employee Asleep On The Job?

As an employer, if you catch an employee asleep on the job, you should follow the guidelines outlined in your company’s employee handbook or employment contracts. Typically, sleeping on the job is considered unprofessional behavior and can be grounds for disciplinary action or even termination, especially if it is deemed gross misconduct. It is important to ascertain the reason for the employee’s behavior and to take the appropriate course of action, which may include counseling, reprimand, or suspension.

What Are The Consequences For An Employee Who Falls Asleep On The Job?

If an employee falls asleep on the job, the consequences may depend on the severity and frequency of the behavior, as well as the policies outlined in their employment contract. In some cases, it may be considered gross misconduct and lead to immediate termination. In other cases, it may result in disciplinary action, including verbal or written warnings, or suspension. Employers should have clear policies in place regarding sleeping on the job, and employees should be aware of the potential consequences.

Can An Employee Be Fired For Sleeping On The Job Due To A Medical Condition Such As Sleep Apnea?

Employment law requires employers to make reasonable accommodations for employees with medical conditions, including sleep apnea, which may cause excessive sleepiness during work hours. However, if an employee’s sleeping on the job poses an immediate danger or safety risk, employers may be justified in taking disciplinary action or termination. In general, employers should work with employees to find reasonable solutions and accommodations, such as allowing a power nap during a break or adjusting work schedules.

Can I Take A Power Nap During My Break Time?

Yes, taking a power nap during a break time is generally acceptable, as long as it does not interfere with your job duties or violate any company policies. However, it is important to be mindful of your surroundings and to make sure you are not causing any disruption or safety risks. Employers may have specific policies related to break times and sleeping on the job, so it is important to review your employee handbook or speak with your people manager to ensure you are following company guidelines.

How Do Sleep Cycles And The Gender Pay Gap Impact Sleeping On The Job?

Research has shown that sleep cycles can vary by gender, with women generally needing more sleep than men. Additionally, the gender pay gap can contribute to stress and fatigue, which can impact sleep quality and quantity. These factors can increase the risk of sleeping on the job and may be important considerations for employers when developing policies and programs related to employee well-being and fatigue management. (Source: Harvard Health Publishing)

Jemele Williams
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