Royal Mail appoints chair for Attendance Academy

Royal Mail has appointed Professor Mansel Aylward as chair of its Attendance Academy, which is aimed at dealing with high absence rates.

Aylward is currently director of the UnumProvident Centre for Psychosocial and Disability Research at Cardiff University. He was previously employed by the Department for Work and Pensions as chief medical adviser, medical director and chief scientist.

The first meeting of the academy took place last month for both external and internal HR professionals, as well as Royal Mail employees who manage absence at a local level.

These meetings will be held quarterly.

Jon Allen, head of employee relations at Royal Mail and creator of the academy, explained: "We want to look at every aspect of absence. There is nothing that we will not consider or that is not up for discussion."

The organisation is also considering how it can continue to reward employees with low levels of sickness absence.