With employee retention and engagement being very real challenges to many employers, the last thing a smart manager wants to do is to deny vacation requests. In addition to employees being entitled to the time off, research also shows that vacations or ‘down time’ are vital to keeping employees satisfied with their jobs, engaged; and not getting burnt out. Here are some tips for how to coolly manage your team’s vacation schedule even as the temperatures continue to rise:
1. Agree to plan vacations well in advance. Setting a deadline for submitting vacation requests allows you and your team to plan around employee absences to avoid scheduling conflicts, and just as importantly, so that deadlines and delivery dates aren’t missed. Companies typically ask their employees to give at least several months’ notice if they plan to go on vacations longer than a week.
2. Address the subject of vacation time and your employee paid time off policy during the hiring and onboarding process. Remember to discuss peak work periods when vacations may be restricted. If there are any conflicts with major holidays or prior commitments, discuss them at that time to prevent surprises later on.
3. Prepare for the absences. Make sure those taking time off have set up those covering for them for success, providing them with contact information, a summary of work in progress, access to needed work files, and other pertinent information to meet crucial deadlines. Provide a checklist of items needed so that those going on vacations can be organized and focus on what they need to set up.
4. Make the extra workload manageable and non-disruptive by dividing the vacationing employees’ duties among several non-vacationing colleagues rather than overwhelming one employee with the vacationing employee’s full workload.
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