How to Call In Sick with A Text

How to Call In Sick With a Text

This article will go over the topic of calling in sick to work as well as texting in sick to work. It will cover some best practices on how to do so, as well as some examples for different employee - employer relationships.

When is it Okay to Call or Text In Sick?

Everyone gets sick or has to miss work for one reason or another. Sometimes, a slight cough or scratchy throat slowly gets worse over the course of a few days. Other times, it can hit all at once, and you wake up feeling like the world is spinning. In either case, you are now faced with the need to take a sick day.

If you thought you were alone and calling in sick, don’t worry; you aren’t. Almost 8 Million workers in the US in January of 2022 alone missed work because of illness. On a state-to-state basis, laws will require companies to have clear policies on sick leave days and how many employees are allowed to have.  Companies are to encourage a healthy workplace and will typically provide what sort of expectations they have for notification and required documentation.  Managers will inherently have some degree of trust in you but will more than likely approach you if a certain pattern in sick leaves arises.

When a manager notices a recurring pattern, such as an employee consistently calling in sick on days when less desirable tasks are scheduled, it’s important to address this behavior directly and responsibly. This pattern might be a coincidence and a deliberate avoidance of certain responsibilities. In such cases, managers should have a candid conversation with the employee to discuss these observations. They should express concern and seek to understand the employee’s perspective while explaining the impact of these absences on the team and overall operations.

It’s crucial for managers to maintain a balance between empathy and accountability. By fostering an open dialogue, managers can help ensure that sick leave is used appropriately and maintain a fair and productive work environment. This approach not only addresses the specific issue but also upholds the integrity of the company’s sick leave policy.

Calling in vs. Texting in to Work Sick

The question of whether it is acceptable for employees to text their boss when they’re sick is a valid one. In this regard, the term ‘calling in’ is commonly used to describe the act of informing your boss about the need to miss work. While it is indeed the most prevalent method, it is important to note that it is not the sole means of communication, and there might be situations where it is not the most suitable option either.

One crucial factor to consider is the nature of your relationship with your boss. Understanding their preferred mode of communication is key. If you typically engage in text message conversations with your boss, then sending a text to inform them about your sickness might be a viable choice. Text messages are often read promptly, ensuring that your boss receives the news as soon as possible.

However, it is worth noting that workplace communication norms can differ. In many professional settings, it is not uncommon to communicate with teammates through various digital channels, such as text messages, instant messages, and emails. When it comes to absenteeism, adhering to the most commonly-used form of communication between you and your manager is generally considered best practice.

If you typically communicate with your boss via text message, then a text in to work sick message is likely a good choice.  are typically read within minutes, and your boss will likely want to receive the news as soon as possible.

On the other hand, if your usual means of communication with your boss is phone calls, it would be prudent to explore alternative methods of getting in touch when you are sick. While a text message might suffice in some cases, it is essential to assess whether there are more appropriate ways to inform your boss, given your established communication patterns.


When to Send a Text In Sick Message

The best rule to follow here is as soon as possible. Communicating your situation to your boss as early as you can allows your boss more time to make any necessary adjustments or find coverage while you are absent.

Ultimately, regardless of the chosen method, it is crucial to provide your manager with as much notice as possible. This means communicating your absence in advance and not relying on a coworker to relay the message. Neglecting to give timely notice may have consequences, such as a ‘no call, no show’ mark on your employment record. Thus, it is always advisable to inform your boss directly and promptly, ensuring that they have ample time to address the situation.


What to Include in your Text In Sick Message

Clearly communicating the reason for your absence is a best practice to follow. If you

The Reason for Your Sick Day

In order to maintain a quality relationship with your place of work, it’s important to express the reason for your absence.

Although it may not be required by law or even by your workplace’s handbook or set of rules; clearly communicating the reason you won’t be at work is something your superiors and coworkers will appreciate.

When You Expect to Return to Work

Expessing how long you will be missing work is important for your coworkers and boss to be able to manage without you. Are you going to miss one day or will your absence be the whole week? Communicating openly about when you expected return to work is crucial to an effective message.

Your Name

This might seem silly at first, however having your name included in your text in sick message is important. Your boss might have a new phone, could misread the message as someone else calling in, etc. Adding your name is a very simple way to ensure you have communicated yourself clearly without the possiblity of confusion.

Texting and Email Both Have Their Place

To expand on ensuring employee happiness and productivity, managers can engage in several proactive measures. According to a Gallup post-pandemic survey and discussed in a CNN article, ‘Employees who feel cared for are 71% less likely to report burnout, three times more likely to be engaged at work, and five times more likely to strongly advocate for their company as a good place to work. In addition, workers are 36% more likely to say they are thriving overall.

It’s crucial for managers to not only trust but also support their team members during sick leaves. This support can manifest in understanding and mitigating the impact on other team members who might need to take on additional responsibilities. Consult with those on the team who will most feel the absent worker’s effects. Determine the extent of these workers’ abilities and the resources they require. Offering incentives and awards can be a great way to motivate and appreciate these employees, letting them know their efforts in supporting a sick colleague are valued.

Text-In Examples

Message With a Doctor’s Note:

Mr. Jennings,

I unfortunately will not be able to work tomorrow, January 17th through January 19th, due to an illness.
I have recently been to the Dr.’s office and the Dr. suggested I rest for the next 48 hours.

Thank you

Jake Espinoza

➤ Send Now

For Salaried Employees:

Hello Mr. Jackson,

I have had a sudden family emergency and will need to take the day off today and take care of the matter. If anyone call’s for me, have them leave a voicemail or send me an email. I believe I should be back at work tomorrow, if anything changes I will keep you up to date. Thank you for your understanding,

Allison Smith

➤ Send Now

Casual Message:

Hey Phil, I am going to have to miss work today. I am feeling sick and don’t want to bring anything into work with me. I reached out to Robert and he said he would be able to handle the day with out me and to reach out to him if you need anything. I’ll keep you in the loop on how I’m feeling tomorrow. Thanks!


➤ Send Now

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Text-In with unplanned reasons such as:

  • Illness
  • Mental health
  • Injury
  • Transportation Issues
  • Extreme Weather
  • Family Emergency
  • Death of a loved one
  • Pet care issues
  • Child care issues
Text In Sick

Text-In a request off for a planned event such as:

  • Children or Family event
  • Doctor’s Appointment
  • Parent Teacher Conference
  • Jury Duty
  • Wedding
  • Funeral
  • Vacations
Dr. Appointment

Closing Summary

Everyone get’s sick at one ponit or another, and everyone who get’s sick needs a way of communicating that with their employer. At the end of the day, you will need to do what you can to make sure your message for calling in sick is carefully crafted. Clear communication is key when it comes to expressing the need for taking a sick day. A well written text message, under the appropriate setting is just as valuable as a phone call or email. 

Cody Kelly

Cody Kelly

Cody is an experienced Marketing Specialist with over a decade worth of experience in marketing and client success. He creates and optimizes content, articles and guides to help businesses of all sizes grow. With a background in marketing, hospitality, and finance, Cody has consistently increased profitability for clients with strategic planning while delivering first class service.

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