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Vacation Policy: Should Employees be Forced to Check Out?
Is vacation something that employees should be forced to take when they’re reluctant to leave the office? You may be surprised...
With summer in full swing, an upcoming vacation or a recent getaway seems to be on most employees’ minds. Although there is no federal law requiring employers to offer paid vacation, most organizations with skilled labor do. But is vacation something that employees should be forced to take when they’re reluctant to leave the office?
The experts say yes. Here’s why.
1. Vacations are healthy. According to WebMD, “People who take vacations have lower stress, less risk of heart disease, a better outlook on life, and more motivation to achieve goals.” The health benefits of planning a trip can be felt up to 8 weeks before the trip even happens! Give yourself something to look forward to and start planning your next vacation – off company time, of course.
2. Vacations make employees more well-rounded. When an employee is out of the office, it forces other employees to step in and cover for the vacationing employee where needed. This makes the company less reliant on individual employees and requires coworkers to better understand each other’s job requirements, client base, and roles.
3. Vacations boost productivity. Except in cases where traveling may be stressful, vacations help re-energize employees and give them new perspectives. According to Jay Starkman, CEO of Engage in Florida, “Vacations allow people to recharge their batteries and come back as better workers. It’s amazing how many people come back from vacation and say, ‘I’ve got some new ideas.’”
4. Vacations protect against theft. When employees are forced to step out of the office and coworkers step up to fill in, it’s easier to identify embezzlement and other workplace crime. According to a 2016 study by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, employee tips are the best source of detecting fraud schemes, and having simple policies such as mandatory vacation and job rotation reduce average fraud losses by 48%.
In an environment where employees are trying to prove they deserve a promotion by working harder and longer than everyone else, getting them to leave work may be somewhat of a challenge. If this sounds familiar, it’s time to change your company culture.
If you haven’t already done so, implement a paid vacation policy that encourages employees to step away several times a year. Then make vacations a casual conversation piece or even a discussion point in meetings. Show pictures of a recent getaway and encourage employees to also share their vacation experiences. The more managers talk positively about vacations, the more likely employees will be willing to take vacation time.
For more tips on boosting employee morale, please contact your certified HR expert. Not a current Stratus HR client? Book a free consultation and our team will contact you shortly!