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Old 04-16-2019, 10:32 AM
 
6,370 posts, read 3,488,993 times
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I’ve been at companies with set vacation, ones with unlimited, and one with set days that transitioned to unlimited.

The one that changed did so to take the liability off the books, and there was a mad scramble for people with “banked” days to spend them before they lost them.

In my experience the best outcome is where it’s not tracked, but where the culture sets an expectation (or the manager does) of what is acceptable.

I’ve always seen in the company HR guides that it’s up to the discretion of the manager - so if you have a workaholic who never takes time off they bristle at asking for a week. Others are fine with a couple of weeks in a row. HR doesn’t dictate and they are off the hook. This is the downside. The upside is that people will no longer run out of days and can’t take one off to take care of a sick child for example. That tends to stress people out.

I’ve never been at a company where “unlimited” meant people took more time off than they did based upon a set number of days after say 5 years tenure. It benefits the new people more.
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Old 04-16-2019, 10:38 AM
 
780 posts, read 204,781 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr_Geek View Post
It’s usually unlimited vacation that you can never take.
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoCal25 View Post
It's a great way for companies to not have to accrue earned vacation and pay it out in layoffs etc.
Exactly!

But in all seriousness, I work at a company that has this sort of thing. You can definitely use it. I've used plenty of it in my short time here for a two week long honeymoon and long weekend trips here and there. However, I know that management has joked about how it's a great concept, but that most people are too busy to take advantage. It is ironic how these types of policies tend to be implemented at places where the culture is "work around the clock for the client". I think it's a marketing ploy that HR uses to make the company seem more appealing when they are well aware that the "client comes first" mentality is fully subscribed to.
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Old 04-16-2019, 12:23 PM
 
Location: DFW
557 posts, read 159,142 times
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I think we are a work obsessed society, and are extremely unhealthy because of it- physically, mentally, spiritually. That said, if there were unlimited vacation, I feel it would be of great benefit. When one is handcuffed to a desk for 9-12 hours a day, aside from the physical disease, mentally, no one can focus on work that long--> note I am playing around on CD now!
An employer will only get about 5-6 hours of quality, focused work out of 9-12 hours, so why not maximize their return?

If there were unlimited vacation, employees would work 5 hours or so, go to the gym, their kids soccer game, make dinner, then maybe work a little more at home. Employees could be wherever they want in the world, work 4 hours, hike or sail or ski for 4 hours, and work a little more.

Both employers and employees would get more out of it. Further, employees would not be x-ing days off their calendar until their vacation, or retirement, completely checking out mentally on that last day or week before leaving or after returning.

The current system of what, 10-20 days off per year within 60 hour work weeks is sad, antiquated, unhealthy, oppressive, and unproductive.
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Old 04-16-2019, 12:25 PM
 
1,704 posts, read 558,708 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarshaBrady1968 View Post
I think we are a work obsessed society, and are extremely unhealthy because of it- physically, mentally, spiritually. That said, if there were unlimited vacation, I feel it would be of great benefit. When one is handcuffed to a desk for 9-12 hours a day, aside from the physical disease, mentally, no one can focus on work that long--> note I am playing around on CD now!
An employer will only get about 5-6 hours of quality, focused work out of 9-12 hours, so why not maximize their return?

If there were unlimited vacation, employees would work 5 hours or so, go to the gym, their kids soccer game, make dinner, then maybe work a little more at home. Employees could be wherever they want in the world, work 4 hours, hike or sail or ski for 4 hours, and work a little more.

Both employers and employees would get more out of it. Further, employees would not be x-ing days off their calendar until their vacation, or retirement, completely checking out mentally on that last day or week before leaving or after returning.

The current system of what, 10-20 days off per year within 60 hour work weeks is sad, antiquated, unhealthy, oppressive, and unproductive.
What work obsessed society? People in the US average less hours/week now than ever before in history.
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Old 04-16-2019, 12:26 PM
 
Location: Denver CO
21,179 posts, read 11,808,808 times
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I agree with those who say that the main benefit is that the employer doesn't have any obligation to pay out for accrued vacation time. On the other hand, if you are the type of person who goes through all of your vacation days every year, that doesn't really have a major impact.

So then the next issue is the company culture regarding taking time off, and that doesn't matter whether it's a traditional system or an unlimited one, if you have to get time off approved and it's never approved. But of course, it's pretty much impossible to get a straight answer about that during an interview anyway, because every employer is going to say that they support work/life balance, blah blah blah

That's when you work your network, linkedin and otherwise, and try to get to anyone you can who actually works at a potential employer and find out the real deal about working there and taking time off. Knowing that it could vary some by individual manager, you can still get at least some idea of whether it's normal for people to take time off in the amounts and in the durations that work for you - meaning in some places, you might be approved for a week off once a year, but only 1 or 2 days at a time besides that. Somewhere else, it might be fine to take a 2+ week trip to go to Africa or somewhere else that it's so long and expensive just to get there, it's hardly worth it to not go for a more extended time period. Whether you have X number of accrued days or so-called unlimited, it still all comes down to how you are allowed to use the time.
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Old 04-16-2019, 12:27 PM
 
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We just went to Open Leave and it's great. I can finally start grad school, which requires one week-long onsite session each semester. I can still have a vacation on top of it.
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Old 04-16-2019, 12:55 PM
 
Location: Mars City
5,091 posts, read 2,149,484 times
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Unlimited vacation policy?!? I've never heard of that. How about vacation 365 days a year? Sounds like that would be possible. LOL. Sign me up!
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Old 04-16-2019, 01:01 PM
 
800 posts, read 469,230 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarshaBrady1968 View Post
If there were unlimited vacation, employees would work 5 hours or so, go to the gym, their kids soccer game, make dinner, then maybe work a little more at home. Employees could be wherever they want in the world, work 4 hours, hike or sail or ski for 4 hours, and work a little more.

Unlimited vacation is not the same as a work whenever you feel like it policy.
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Old 04-16-2019, 01:24 PM
 
1,866 posts, read 720,300 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thoreau424 View Post
Unlimited vacation policy?!? I've never heard of that. How about vacation 365 days a year? Sounds like that would be possible. LOL. Sign me up!
Yes, that "unlimited vacation" policy is definitely a misnomer. It does suggest that you can always be on vacation without any consequences. Thus, I think that this is a deliberate marketing gimmick that makes it look like something it isn't. A better name would be a "responsible vacation" policy. But then, it doesn't sound as good.

As others have said, an unlimited vacation policy benefits the company since there is no unused vacation payout when an employee resigns. Also, since it is often not clear how much vacation is appropriate to take, despite the "unlimited" moniker, many employees feel guilty in taking any time off. This typically results in employees taking less time off compared to the old fashioned allocating a set amount of vacation time a year way. Plus, even workaholics who may abhor taking any time off will not be able to cash out vacation days anymore.

But that's good news. Look at how much time and money the companies get under this new "vacation" system. It is a good deal. For them. For the workers? Um, no.
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Old 04-16-2019, 01:49 PM
 
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Some of you people seem to work in very strange places. Are you not held to performance standards? Why would you imagine that taking excessive leave under such a policy wouldn't impact that? Is your workplace full of children and slackers?

I think it shows a great deal of trust that the people they hire are thoughtful, mature and committed to the work. Not clockwatchers.

Presumably crappy employees who abuse the system, any system, are weeded out. No?
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