Holidays – 50% of employees don’t take all their annual leave. Why should you take yours?

 ‘25 days plus bank’

‘You get your birthday off’

‘Opportunity to buy back holiday’

These are job benefits that can really sway your decision to join a company. It’s a basic perk that every employer has the right to 28 days’ holiday and one that employees really value having a lot of. It’s a way to de-stress, catch up with friends and family and just (try) not to think about work.

Take your holiday!

Yet Acas’ research has found that half of UK employees don’t take all of their annual leave. Most people, even when they’re on holiday, are guilty of not switching off: replying to work emails, answering calls and even taking their work on holiday with them.

So why don’t people take holiday?

No one wants to burnout and we all know how important it is to not focus all our time and energy on work. Yet if half of UK employees are not taking annual leave so what are the reasons why people don’t take holiday?

According to the Telegraph one of the biggest reasons is their workload was too heavy and so they felt that they couldn’t take the day off. It’s the worry of falling behind and being inundated with work when they return, the trade-off of not having a holiday to avoid the backlog of stress from work when they return might seem like a small sacrifice. This can mount up, especially if they don’t feel comfortable leaving the work with someone else.

Worrying that time can’t be taken off due to a fear you’ll be seen as unreasonable to taking liberties, is another reason people are reluctant to book time off.

There are steps you can take to mitigate this fear and still enjoy time off. You can speak to your manager, HR team or whoever deals with the holidays about dates you’ll potentially want off before you send in a request. Ultimately you need to remember that you’re entitled to days off.

If you know you won’t be able to switch off and will be working then tell everyone that is involved with the holiday your motives. Whether it’s telling those you’re travelling with that you will be checking in from time to time or that your managers know you’re going to disengage from work whilst you’re away.

It’s important to take holiday and your employer should encourage you to take it too. By avoiding your holiday, you can risk a burnout and end up taking sick leave – which can cause even more stress.

What should employers do?

Encourage your staff to take holiday! This way you’ll lessen the chances of sick leave and ultimately reduce having a high staff turnover. This is especially evident if your staff feel they’re being judged for taking holiday.    Two weeks off doesn’t justify the cost of recruiting their replacement. This is also alongside the loss of expertise from people who know how to do the job well.

To be offered a holiday as an incentive to join a company shows the value in it so whichever company you chose to go to you should make the most of your holiday.

Charlotte Lynch, Marketing and Social Media Executive for Jems Recruitment

Jems Recruitment love helping people shape their lives and careers. Specialising in Financial Professionals, Management and Business Support they’ll have you find a job you love. #lvwrk