You have probably heard about this corporate trend quickly gaining ground in America: the Unlimited Vacation Policy. Sounds heavenly, but is it realistic?
They do it!
More and more companies are implementing this policy, which focuses on the results obtained rather than the hours that were done. Netflix, Hubspot, and Evernote are among the pioneers of this vacation policy in the USA. Here in Canada, EllisDon, RL Solutions, and Karos Health Inc. are taking part of the movement and are already seeing its benefits. The Unlimited Vacation Policy is gaining popularity, especially among tech startups, allowing a better life-work balance, without compromising productivity.
How do they make it work?
With trust. By trusting your employees with their vacation schedule and time management, you are showing them respect and confidence, which in returns, strengthens their loyalty.
The main reason why this policy works so well is because it’s a win-win: employees see their motivation increased and actually work better, faster, in order to maximize their time at the office and be able to take more time off. Companies who tried it all come up with the same conclusion that, no, people do not really take more vacations than before. But the simple fact that they now can, makes them feel much more relaxed and free, which actually even increased the productivity.
Some say it’s just a tactic to attract young and dynamic talents. Others say it’s the best way to keep a stress-free, productive and engaged team. Many agree that it may not be a successful solution for every industry or work type. Are unlimited vacations right for you and your company?
It is a very tangible and attractive job “perk” to add to your benefits list as an employer that will cost you zero money without compromising your results. It creates a strong link between your company and its employees based on trust and respect, allowing to build long term loyal relationships. One of the goals of the unlimited vacation policy is to empower the employees and make them feel involved, getting them to think in order of what’s best for their productivity and for the company.
One of the greatest benefits of this policy is the effect on employee’s morale and stress. People feel way more relaxed, now that they are not limited and know that they can always take a break if they need it. And as stress and tiredness are true enemies to productivity… the employees who benefit from unlimited vacation are able – and willing – to work more efficiently.
There are a few things to consider before switching to unlimited vacations. Is it possible in your company? Staffing needs, structure, type of business can make it very hard to manage everybody’s vacation desires. Jealousy can occur when not everyone can enjoy the policy the same way. Workaholics out there may end up taking less vacation and be more stressed. It also fails to reward the employee with the most seniority with more vacations…
But most importantly: if this kind of open, trusting and engaging management does not fit your corporate culture, forget it! This policy can only work in a company where employees are passionate, driven and trustworthy. If your this policy do not fit with your values and company culture, there is a strong chance that it won’t be beneficial.
Our best tip would be,
To make this policy work in your company, you have to hire people whose work you value and trust. You MUST explain clearly why you have this policy in place, what benefits attracted you to install it – stress-free environment? happy and motivated employees? And be clear about your expectations regarding the workload and the procedures to take time off.