If you’re wrestling with the demands of employee absence management, you’re not alone. In addition to the productivity, morale, and cost issues that can arise from job interruptions due to employee leaves, companies need to devote significant attention to tracking and reporting absences to comply with regulations such as the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and Americans with Disabilities Amendments Act (ADAAA) – as well as a growing number of state leave laws.*

Mismanagement of employee absences can result in lawsuits, fines and investigations by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), employee abuse of benefits, and poor return-to-work outcomes. So, what should you do?

Why outsource absence management?

Employers who outsource Short Term Disability (STD) and Family and Medical Leaves achieve better absence management results versus employers who manage these leaves internally or outsource STD only.* Wondering how well your company’s absence management efforts measure up? Use Guardian's Absence Management ScorecardSM  to receive a customized assessment of your current absence management activities.

Guardian Absence Management addresses your biggest challenges

Using third parties to oversee absence management can alleviate the administrative burden on companies and help ensure consistency and objectivity in the treatment of employees, which is key to compliance. And since most FMLA leaves are related to an employee’s own health issue, outsourcing these leaves, Short Term Disability (STD), and other benefits to the same external resource can help maximize success. If your company is thinking of outsourcing but hesitant to make the move, or are already outsourcing but want more support, Guardian is here to help.

Our cutting-edge solution: Guardian AbsenceWorks®

Guardian AbsenceWorks® makes it possible for employers of all sizes to take advantage of high-quality, integrated disability and absence management services.

Our range of flexible options – including ADA support – enables us to customize a program to best meet your company’s needs, whether if you have 50 employees or 5,000+. There are two plans to choose from:

Guardian AbsenceEssentials®

  • Designed for smaller businesses outsourcing for the first time
  • Faster implementation – services can be up and running in as little as 30 days
  • Simpler ongoing administration (no monthly eligibility files required)

Guardian AbsenceAdvantage®

  • Best suited for mid-size employers and larger companies
  • Supports first-time outsourcers or employers looking to change or enhance their current support services
  • Offers additional features for a more robust program

Our integrated, end-to-end disability and absence management approach can help minimize risk of liability and misuse of benefits, help return employees to work as soon as appropriate and reduce expenses. Plus, it can greatly streamline administrative processes, so you have more time to focus on your business.

Key features include:

  • Integrated management of leaves, including group STD, group LTD, state and federal family medical leaves, and company leaves.
  • Compliance with the most up-to-date laws, including the FMLA, state regulations and ADA/ADAA (when ADA services are elected).
  • Dedicated leave managers plus services are backed by compliance experts and attorneys specializing in leave and disability laws.
  • Industry-leading software tools that we leverage to track usage patterns, claims, FMLA status and more.
  • ADA service options that range from review and tracking of leave-related accommodations to support with the interactive process.
  • Exceptional support for a better customer experience, including extensive return-to-work assistance.

Integrated intake of STD and FMLA claims

One of the advantages of an integrated solution is that we are able to make the claims process easier for employees, from initial claim to ongoing communications.

Everything under one roof

Because our experienced intake, claims, leave, and clinical support teams are located in a state-of-the-art solution center in Dallas, TX, we can be more efficient and responsive to your needs. Here are just a few of the benefits:

  • The right resources are engaged sooner.
  • Teams are structured to share information and collaborate.
  • In-house clinicians manage medical events throughout the claim life cycle.
  • We review for LTD potential from day one of STD.

See how our integrated, in-house approach to disability and absence management can benefit you by taking our video tour.

Comprehensive reporting to improve employee absence management

Our in-depth reporting for FMLA/STD provides you with the information you need, when you need it, so you can better understand absence trends and reduce future absences. With Guardian, online reporting of leave events is available 24/7 all year round.

Dedicated support for large companies 

Our Group Practice Leaders and claims leadership are actively involved in supporting larger employers, from pre-sale to operations. Led by our Practice Leaders, with an average tenure of 22 years, we have experience in creating the optimal employer-focused absence management program.

Contact your broker today

Learn more about why Guardian is the smart choice for absence management. We’re committed to working with you and your broker to determine the coverage that best fits your company’s needs.


* The 2019 Guardian Absence Management Activity Indexsm and Study.

Guardian’s Group Short Term Disability and Long Term Disability Insurance are underwritten and issued by The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, New York, NY. Products are not available in all states. Policy limitations and exclusions apply. Optional riders and/or features may incur additional costs. This policy provides disability income insurance only. It does NOT provide basic hospital, basic medical or major medical insurance as defined by the New York State Department of Financial Services. Plan documents are the final arbiter of coverage. STD Policy Forms #GP-1-STD07-1.0, et al. and #GP-1-STD-15-1.0 et al.; LTD Policy Forms #GP-1-LTD07-1.0, et al. and #GP-1-LTD-15-1.0 et al.