It may come as a surprise to many Americans that the United States is the only advanced nation in the world that doesn’t require employers to give paid vacation leave. In fact, the average American full-time worker gets only 10 days of paid time off, far below the average number of days in other developed countries. For example, Australia and Sweden have 28 days and 41 days, respectively.
But even more concerning is how only a quarter of American employees take advantage of their full paid vacation time. It’s consistent with findings of many Americans not wanting to take paid time off out of a fear of being left behind and missing career opportunities.
But there are several compelling reasons to offer paid vacation time to employees. We go over a few of them in the list below.
Rested and happy employees are productive employees. And regular time away from work has been shown to make people happy, giving them time to recharge. According to an Expedia survey, percent of professionals say they feel more productive after going on a vacation. They come back refreshed and inspired after spending time away from their daily duties. In contrast, unhappy employees are not only difficult to work with, their mood and disposition affects their creativity and quality of their work. It’s often not about how hard or how long employees work, it’s about the quality of work they put in.
Better Physical and Mental Health
The average employee works more than 40 hours a day, 5 days a week, 12 months a year. Not only does this grind place employees under tremendous stress, it also costs employers money — lots of it.
According to a report by the European Agency for Health and Safety at Work, stress-related issues in the workplace cost employers more than $2,700 annually, for each employee. That’s billions of dollars a year to fix problems related to HR, including high turnover, absenteeism, and health insurance fees among others. Don’t underestimate the negative impact of mental and physical burnout, not just to your employees, but also your organization. Paid vacations may cost money, but they’re worth paying for in the long run.
Inspiration and Creativity
For organizations that rely on creative output like ad agencies, graphic design firms, and even tech companies, there will always be times when conceptualizing new ideas and just thinking about things become a challenge. When people can take time away from work, they not only get to rest their bodies, they also give their minds a break from having to constantly think of new ideas. And the experience of a vacation, or anything enjoyable for that matter, can nurture inspiration, helping generate new ideas and solutions to your company’s problems.
Bottom line? Burnout is very much real a problem. Give your employees the right to go on vacation without having to worry about their jobs, salary, and being left behind in the office. For more workforce management tips, be sure to follow this blog. If you need access to topnotch talent, talk to the staffing services experts of Top Notch Personnel.