Unlimited Vacation? How Technology Supports Greater Productivity and Work-Life Balance
The below article comes from Costco Connection, March 2015. The article is in response to their Voices from Facebook section where the question was posed as to whether companies should offer unlimited vacation policies.
We find it extremely interesting what Mike Volpe from HubSpot has to say about the importance of being able to work from anywhere, providing flexibility for employees, and trusting them to work hard.
As a provider of unified communication services, OneCloud Networks couldn’t agree more. Study after study on employee productivity and satisfaction point to this very thing. Today’s life and work styles demand higher availability, which requires flexibility while at the same time providing access to the necessary work tools and systems. Integrating your communications into your business process—meaning voice, chat, conferencing, document share all integrated with your CRM or other business platform—provides a seamless work experience and uninterrupted process regardless of where employees might be. This enables your employees to have the flexibility they need to be the most valuable and productive team members they can.
OneCloud Networks provides unified communications including cloud-based voice and meeting/conferencing services, Google Apps for Business (an enabling tool mentioned in the article), and CRM integration for one unified business process.
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As for unlimited vacation policies, check out what Mike has to say.
Mike Volpe is the chief marketing officer of HubSpot (hubspot.com), an inbound marketing and sales software company.
PEOPLE’S lifestyles and work styles have dramatically changed over the past 20 years. If companies want to keep employees happy and engaged, they need to build a workplace that reflects the way people live and work today. One way we did this at HubSpot was by introducing an unlimited vacation policy. We realized that evaluating our employees on the number of days they were physically in the office was archaic, because most of their work happens online. They can do their jobs from almost anywhere today, thanks to tools like Google Drive and GoToMeeting.
What matters is that employees are hitting their goals and producing results. If people work late nights or long hours on an important project, they shouldn’t have to get permission to take a long weekend in return. Employees who go above and beyond at work deserve a company that will do the same for them. That’s why we don’t track anyone’s time off. Instead, we hire people who are the right culture fit, give them the autonomy to move the needle on our business and empower them to decide where, when and why they take time off.
Most companies think unlimited vacation policies are ticking time bombs—that if you give employees the freedom to take a week off whenever they want you’ll end up with consistently empty desks. The truth is, unlimited vacation actually makes employees more productive. Instead of spending time and energy worrying about being away from the office, employees have the flexibility to build their own work-life balance. It’s easier to be engaged at work when you don’t have to stress about scheduling a doctor’s appointment, picking up your kids from soccer practice or taking an extra day off to get a cheaper flight.
At the end of the day, employees today want to work for companies that trust them, challenge them and let them create a stress-free work-life balance. Of course, the output of some jobs is measured in hours worked, so for some companies it might not be possible to give unlimited paid vacation. But every job should be more flexible today than it was 10 years ago. Every company should embrace culture and technology changes to enable their employees to mold their jobs to fit their lives.
Your employees will thank you for it by being more productive and happier, and you’ll get the benefit of lower turnover and increased loyalty.
See the article in Costco Connection and the NO point of view on unlimited vacation.