Holiday vacation requests

Shawnee Love   •  
November 23, 2010

Yesterday I whined about one reason I hate December.   Here’s another: Christmas and New Year are always a peak time for conflicting vacation requests.

A solution: Shut down between Xmas and New Years.

Although I know you aren’t made of money, I love giving employees the time off as a gift (i.e., paid) because employees love it and it saves HR the hassle of collecting vacation requests and dealing with complaints and unhappy employees.

Many employers gift a portion of the days and then tell employees to use vacation time for the rest. This can annoy employees who had other plans for those vacation days, but at least it means no one is out of pocket during prime gift giving season, and you don’t have to organize a temporary shutdown with group layoffs if you have 50+ employees affected.

If employees don’t want to use vacation, they can opt to take unpaid time or used banked time if available. Remember to ensure you get their alternative choice in writing so you aren’t haunted by the ghost of Christmas past in the form of an employment standards investigation into the lack of notice on your “temporary layoff” between Christmas and New Year 2011.

If you can’t shut down because your customers or employees need you, then plan now for your holiday schedule.