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1 in 4 men have pulled a sickie to play videogames

Posted 9th December 2009.

A study of 1,920 employees in the UK has revealed that the number one reason men skive off of work is to spend some quality time with their games console, with a third of all sick days, genuine or not, resulting in time spent playing videogames.

The UKs leading discount voucher code website, www.MyVoucherCodes.co.uk has surveyed nearly 2000 British workers and found that across the board; just 46% of sick days in the UK are legitimate, where the person believed they physically couldnt perform their work duties.

Men top the polls of taking days off sick unnecessarily, with 74% of men agreeing that theyd pulled a sickie in recent years without actually being ill, compared to 65% of women who admitted the same.

When asked by MyVoucherCodes.co.uk, Have you ever taken time off work to play videogames? 24% of men said yes, compared to just 5% of women.

Videogame release days are the time most people will make the call to inform their boss theyre too ill to work, with 14% of men admitting they had no qualms calling in sick in order to play high profile releases such as Call of Duty and Grand Theft Auto on the day they are released.

The top five reasons men have time off work other than illness according to the survey are as follows:

1.To play videogames 24%
2.To attend an appointment 16%
3.To visit friends and family 13%
4.To do DIY around the house 10%
5.To catch up on sleep 7%

According to Bupa, last year, sickness absence cost companies an average of £666 per employee and cost the UK economy £13.2 billion. Judging by the 54% of false sick days which are taken each year, £7.1 billion is lost to people having time off when they are physically capable of performing their duties which equates to a cost of just over £1 billion for people simply skiving in order to lay videogames.

Women arent immune to the lure of a day off work on full pay either, with 1 in 5 admitting that theyd feigned illness in order to shop with friends. Half of the women who took time off to shop said theyd shop in other cities so as not to be seen by people they may know. A third of the women who admitted to skiving in order to shop said theyd shopped online to ensure they werent rumbled.

Mark Pearson, retail expert and managing director of MyVoucherCodes.co.uk had the following to say,

The sickie is a time-honoured employment tradition, and although employers, including myself, wouldnt be happy to know that our workers are faking a cold in order to play the latest PS3 or Xbox 360 hit, youve got to admire their dedication to their interest!

As for women shopping, I can see this figure rising on the run-up to Christmas, as great deals and discounts both online and on the high street influence them to pick up the phone and put on their best Id come in if I could voice.

Mark joked,

Whatever the reason people decide not to go into work despite being fully capable, sickies cost the UK economy a shedload of money. Perhaps the Government could look to recoup lost revenue from games developers and fashion outlets?

For more information contact Gabrielle Lofthouse, gabrielle@10yetis.co.uk, 01452 348211

EDITORS NOTES
Mark Pearson, MD of MyVoucherCodes is a regular media contributor regarding online shopping and the credit crunch. At 29 his personal worth is more than £30 million. Mark was previously a trainee chef working for Gordon Ramsay at Claridges, London.

MyVoucherCodes has had sales exceeding £481m in the last year

Consumer savings on online shopping via MyVoucherCodes.co.uk up from £28m in 2008 to £52m in 2009.

MyVoucherCodes is the UKs most popular discount site.