Is this how your employees will spend the holidays?

Canadian workers aren't too keen on taking time off during the festive period

Is this how your employees will spend the holidays?
Canadian employers will need to prepare to keep offices open, as Canadian workers do not plan on leaving their workplaces empty for too long during the holiday week.

A survey, which interviewed 400 workers, conducted by staffing firm Robert Half revealed that 16% of employees plan to work the entire week while 71% will take at least part of the week off.

In a further survey with 500 respondents, some 41% say they are saving the vacation time for later, whilst 15% just have too much to do.

Six percent admit to feeling guilty for taking time off while two percent say their boss discourages vacation time.

Of those who plan to work, at least 75% expect they would be somewhat productive.

Meanwhile nearly half – 48% – will still check in with the office even while they’re out.

A little over half of the 46% who plan the entire week off say it’s because their organization closes for the week. Sixty-eight percent of them say that their employers continue to pay them even when the offices are closed.

Given the varying numbers and inclinations, Greg Scileppi, president of Robert Half’s International Staffing Operations, says managers should:
  • Be proactive. Check time-off balance and the company’s rules on unused vacation days. The policies on “use it or lose it” vary across provinces and employers. Don’t make assumptions – you risk losing valuable time.
  • Emphasize the value of unplugging. Employees hesitant to take time off may be missing out on the chance to recharge and prevent a burnout. Even if no funds are available, relaxing at home is priceless.
  • Talk to your team. Sure, you can email workers with high vacation balances to tell them they have accumulated good time. But it is always better to talk to them one on one and find out why they are not taking much-needed time off. Help them set their priorities straight.
  • Set an example. Perhaps your team is taking the cue from you. Why aren’t you on vacation? Workers who see their boss around all the time may find it difficult to step away from the office. Remember: Working round the clock is never a healthy norm.

Related stories:
The classic corporate vacation system is busted. Here’s how to fix it
The hidden costs of a Christmas party

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