Smoking and the Bottom Line: Updating the Costs of Smoking in the Workplace

The Conference Board of Canada, 12 pages, August 2006
Briefing by Christopher Hallamore
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How are smoking bans and decreasing numbers of smokers affecting the bottom line for Canadian employers? This report compares estimates of the cost to organizations of employing smokers in light of changes since the Board’s original 1997 report.

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How are smoking bans and decreasing numbers of smokers affecting the bottom line for Canadian employers? This report compares estimates of the cost to organizations of employing smokers in light of changes since the Board’s original 1997 report.

For organizations considering the cost of a program to help employees quit smoking, this report establishes the cost of smoking employees to their bottom line. It examines four aspects of employer-paid costs affected by smoking employees: employee absenteeism, employee productivity, group health benefit premiums and facilities modifications. Using data on smoking in Canada and smoking restrictions in the workplace, the model demonstrates that employees who smoke do cost their employers more than their non-smoking colleagues.

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