Praise be to Allaah.
This is a kind of service, but it is satanic service which the Shaytaan is instilling in the person who does this and makes it appear that someone is present when this is not the case. There are three reasons for having reservations about this practice:
(1) It is lying; (2) it involves deceiving those who are in charge; (3) it makes the absent person entitled to wages on the basis of attendance, which he then takes and consumes unlawfully. One of these reservations alone is sufficient to make this practice, which the questioner apparently sees as a human service or favour, be described as haraam. Not all human favours are praiseworthy; only those that coincide with sharee’ah are praiseworthy – those that go against sharee’ah are to be condemned. Calling favours that go against sharee’ah “human services” is in fact a misnomer, because anything that goes against sharee’ah is a bestial action. This is why Allaah described the kuffaar and mushrikeen as being like cattle. He says (interpretation of the meaning): “… while those who disbelieve enjoy themselves and eat as cattle eat, and the Fire will be their abode.” [Muhammad 47:12] and “…They are only like cattle; - nay, they are even farther astray from the Path…” [al-Furqaan 25:44]. So everything that is contrary to sharee’ah is a bestial action, not human.