National Sickie Day: Survey reveals which jobs people are most likely to pull a sickie in

3 February 2020, 14:21 | Updated: 3 February 2020, 14:35

Man holding a drink while lying in bed at home
Man holding a drink while lying in bed at home. Picture: Adam Kuylenstierna / EyeEm/ Getty Creative

The first Monday of February has been coined National Sickie Day. A survey has revealed which jobs have the biggest culprits when it comes to pulling a sickie.

Today is known as National Sickie Day; when people are most likely to call into work and lie about being sick.

Various factors have been cited for the timing of the day, including the fact that it's the day after the Super Bowl and the first working day after people finish Dry January.

But did you ever wonder which types of jobs the most people pull sickies from? A study has gone some way to finding out.

As reported by Wales Online, a research undertaken by savoystewart.co.uk surveyed 2,160 employees to find out which sectors lie the most about being ill, and what the most common excuses are.

Right at the top of the pile was the Retail sector, with 76% of participants admitting to faking illness, while 33% admitting to faking it on more than one occasion.

Next in line were those working in Leisure, Sport & Tourism, with 68% admitting to lying about being sick, while 42% did it more than once.

Next was Recruitment and HR, with 63% admitting to pulling a sickie.

However, the Healthcare sector and Teacher training and Education were the least likely to pull sickies, with only 24% in the latter sector admitting to lying.

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See the top jobs people are most likely to pull a sickie from:

1. Retail

2. Leisure, sport and tourism

3. Recruitment and HR

4. Marketing, advertising and PR

5. Sales

6. Charity and voluntary work

7. Information technology

8. Media and internet

9. Law enforcement and security

10. Property and construction

11. Hospitality and events management

12. Energy and utilities

13. Business, consulting and management

14. Creative arts and design

15. Public services and administrations

16. Accountancy, banking and finance

17. Environment and agriculture

18. Law

19. Engineering and manufacturing

20. Science and pharmaceuticals

21. Transport and logistics

22. Social care

23. Healthcare

24. Teacher training and education

When it came to the reasons why people needed a day off, needing a mental health day came out on top, with food poisoning being the most popular excuse they used.

See the top reasons employees pull a sickie:

1. Needed a mental health day (20%)

2. Hungover (18.57%)

3. Couldn’t be bothered (15.71%)

4. Too tired (15%)

5. Busy/have other plans (14.29%)

See the top excuses used in pulling a sickie:


1. Food Poisoning (26.76%)

2. Vomiting (18.31%)

3. Flu (12.68%)]

4. Migraine (9.86%)

5. Diarrhoea (7.04%)