How do I report on the Bradford Factor?

It’s important to understand what the Bradford Factor actually is before explaining how to report on it. This guide will look at:

  • What is the Bradford Factor?
  • Bradford Factor - Employee Dashboard
  • Bradford Factor - Reports

What is the Bradford Factor?

It is a business metric which suggests that several short periods of unexpected absence are more disruptive than one long period, given the same number of total days absent. It is worked out as follows: S x S x D = Bradford Factor (B), where S is the number of separate periods of absence in a timeframe and D is the total number of ‘days’ of absence in the timeframe. 


Employee A has had 2 separate periods of absence, totalling 7 days (2 x 2 x 7 = 28).

Employee B has had 4 separate periods of absence, totalling 7 days (4 x 4 x 7 = 112).

A high Bradford Factor score is less desirable than a low one. In our example, 4 separate periods of unexpected absence are seen as being more disruptive to the business than 2, despite the same number of total absence days.

Bradford Factor - Employee Dashboard

By navigating to an Employee’s Dashboard, you can see their Bradford Factor score calculated on a 12-month rolling basis. This is useful if you wish to quickly look at an individual’s score without a detailed breakdown.

In the Employee Dashboard, Focus only uses Sickness Absence Types to calculate Bradford Factor scores.

Bradford Factor - Reports

If you wish to see the Bradford Factor scores for an entire Group or multiple Groups of employees, then use the Bradford Factor Report to do so. The Report will show a breakdown of Days Absent, Periods of Absence and the Bradford Factor score for each employee.

  1. Select ‘Reports’ from the Menu Bar.
  2. Select ‘Bradford Factor’ from the Reports Tree.
  1. Setting the Report ‘Filters’ as above will provide the same Bradford Factor scores as seen in Employee Dashboards (eg. using Sickness Types only).
  2. Select the ‘Report’ tab to run the report.
  1. After running the Report, you can choose to download it, as a PDF for example, by selecting ‘Export’ in the top right-hand corner of the Report screen and choosing the required method of export.

Additional information

Defining a period of absence

In order to get an accurate Bradford Factor score, it is important to know what is and isn’t a single period of absence. Focus uses lots of factors to determine whether a period of absence is continuous or broken:

Things that break periods

  • If the employee makes a clocking between two days of sickness.
  • If the employee is scheduled to work between two days of sickness, but there has been no sickness absence booked for the day.
  • If the employee has any non-sickness Absence booked.*

Things that will not break periods

  • If a Rota employee had no shifts on the Rota between two sick days.
  • If a Work Schedule employee is not scheduled to work between two sick days.

* This can result in a misleading Bradford Factor score if, for example, an employee chooses to convert part of a sickness absence into annual leave. In this case we recommend converting either the start or the end of the absence period to annual leave.

‘Holidays Break Period’

Ticking this option in the Report Filters breaks one continuous period of absence into two if holiday has been taken in the middle of the absence period. Therefore, the resulting Bradford Factor score will be higher.


An employee is off work for 5 days (Mon & Tues - sick / Wed - holiday / Thurs & Fri - sick).

Only the Sickness Absence Types are selected in the Bradford Factor Report ‘Filters’.

‘Holidays Break Period’ unticked
Focus calculates that there is 1 absence period of 4 days (the holiday is ignored).

Bradford Factor 1 x 1 x 4 = 4

‘Holidays Break Period’ ticked

Focus calculates that there are 2 absence periods of 2 days each (the holiday is acknowledged and so breaks the initial single absence period into two).

Bradford Factor 2 x 2 x 4 = 16

Related Articles

How do I assign the same Absences to multiple employees?

Use Absence Profiles to assign the same set of Absences (Bank Holidays, Company Shutdown etc) to groups of employees.

Skill Level