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Super Bowl Monday Is the Super Bowl of Absenteeism

February 4th, 2019

Super Bowl 53 logo

Does the office seem a little quieter than usual today? That's because the day after Super Bowl Sunday has one of the, if not the highest absenteeism rates of the year. And we'll go out on a limb and say if you're in the city with the winning team, the missing in action numbers are even higher.

For more than a decade The Workforce Institute at Kronos has tracked Super Bowl Monday absenteeism, conducting a survey in the weeks before the big game to see how many workers will take the Monday off. This year, the estimate was 17.2 million, beating the all-time record of 16.5 million in 2016.

The survey dug into a few related practices, finding that 22 million workers said they'd probably go into work late (the game didn't start until 6:30 on the East coast), or they expected to leave early (hangover expectations?) or just work from home today. 9.4 million were undecided what they'd end up doing.

For those of us who are at work, we might actually get something done. The bosses who participated in the survey were more likely to be no shows; 36% admitted to planning a short day or a no work day.

All fun aside, there's a serious side to Super Bowl Monday, between the absent workers, and those nursing a game hangover, and those just talking about the game, the loss in productivity could be around $4.4 billion for the day. That comes from the outplacement and consulting firm Challenger, Gray and Christmas.

Now, none of these estimates are "take it to the bank" solid, especially the productivity costs. There's a bit of guesswork in the latter, and in the Kronos survey, well, that was conducted before the final playoff games when a lot of hopes were still alive.

But just look around the office and you decide how close the numbers came. No wonder then that the call to make today a national holiday is not as wacky as it might seem.

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