11 February 2016

Unlimited leave the future of workplace relations?

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A developing trend to enter the American workplace, LinkedIn has adopted a policy of unlimited vacation time. Part of an effort to encourage more of their employees to take time off, Linked In announced a major time-off perk that also gives the company a bottom line advantage. But is the new policy good for the employee, company or both?

It’s not a 9 to 5 world anymore, the American worker in 2016 is at it 24/7, expected to always be connected, always reachable.

LinkedIn’s Director for Corporate Communications, Catherine Fisher, says ditching limited vacations can be advantageous.

“LinkedIn has decided to go to a model of discretionary time off. So what that means is it’s our employees can choose how many days that they want to take off as vacation and just work it out with their manager,” she said.

LinkedIn is not the first company that has taken this route. Other companies who have allowed staff to take as much leave as they like include Groupon, Netflix, Eventbrite, Survey Monkey and Virgin.

American’s are not known for taking vacations. A recent survey found the average American worker takes only 51% of their eligible time off each year. Older employees and those living in the west tend to take more vacation days whilst women tend to take fewer days off than men. Part of the reason concerns the job might not be there when they return.

To many Australians or Europeans that’s crazy talk. Workers in France get 30 vacations day a year whilst the average Aussie working full time gets 20 annual leave days per year. Add onto that the number of state’s public holidays and you’re looking between 31-34 days off a year.

Unlimited holiday may sound like an impossible dream to many of us, however, there are ways to maximise the whole work life balance. According to Skyscanner’s calculations, by combining your annual leave days with weekends and public holidays in 2016 could give you 43 days off while only sacrificing 17 annual leave days.

What are your thought on unlimited leave? Let me know in the comments below.

The best part of my job as a Conference Production Manager is to create and manage my own conferences from concept to delivery, identify future conference topics as well as giving me a chance to expand my business card collection. Having a bit of a sweet tooth, you will always find me having lollies on my desk or you will catch me browsing on fashion sites during lunch breaks.

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