HR Management: Should Organizations Provide Employees with Unlimited Paid Vacations?

The HR management team is always concerned about the source of motivation for the employees to achieve the highest level of productivity. Experts have proposed various ways to motivate their employees, with some motivators being monetary while others entail actions that add value to workers. HR management policies change to accommodate the company’s new internal and external demands to increase competitiveness. Media attention is growing on the implementation of unlimited paid time-off vacations, which is among reforms in organizations that are gaining interest in research and practice (Sammer). Some human resource managers support the concept while others oppose it, suggesting that companies should set limited days for a compensated vacation. Although companies spend resources to pay employees during leaves, unlimited paid vacations would motivate workers to become more productive.

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The HR management team is concerned about the idea of employees taking time off work whenever the need arises. While unlimited paid time-off vacations could benefit companies and employees, only a few executives have implemented such a policy. Thus, it is possible that many human resource managers are yet to understand the real benefits of such a human resource decision (Sammer). The policy allows employees to decide when and for how long to take time off work without the approval of management. However, the company requires workers to update their colleagues about the progress of their work to avoid any interruption when they are on vacation (McGregor). Therefore, the idea entails having time off for employees as long as their work is done. 

Creating an engaging and highly motivated team is one of the benefits of using the unlimited paid time-off vacation policy. Employees are motivated by the trust expressed by the administration that they can effectively manage their time without being pressured to perform. They can successfully achieve a work-life balance, an aspect that is commonly lacking in conventional workplaces (Sammer). Employees become more productive when allowed to control their time and work instead of being directed through a strict schedule by the management. The new policy would give workers an incentive to balance their professional and personal lives while still achieving the goals and objectives of a company. In addition, a firm would save on the cost of traditional vacations and can reinvest savings in people through relevant training (McGregor). While an organization would benefit from the new policy, the actual value addition is based on the ability to invest in the needs of employees, which would motivate them to become more profitable.

Some companies, including Virgin Group and Netflix, have successfully implemented unlimited paid time-off vacation policies. Many corporations using the program are startups and innovators focused on building a new culture different from the traditional 9 am to 5 pm working timeframe (Sammer). Furthermore, firms using the new policy have become attractive to employees because of the flexibility. The choice of vacation time is a critical decision, especially for employees in their thirties and forties (Ain). Employees are more likely to turn down companies that use the traditional three weeks of vacation time when they have a choice. As a result, many employers struggle to fill some positions, not because of a lack of qualified candidates but due to inadequate flexible time-off programs. Hence, the paid time-off vacation policy is a selling point for organizations attracting highly innovative employees.

Besides attracting and retaining an innovative team, organizations avoid the challenge of paying unused days in case employees quit their job. For instance, the traditional vacation model adds a financial burden if a company decides to downsize with unused time off (McGregor). Hence, companies benefit from a highly productive team and a cost-saving advantage when employees leave. Under the traditional vacation model, workers accrue annual vacation days, which are carried forward. The employees could either decide to use those days during the following year, giving them more time off work, or receive payment once they leave the company (McGregor). Conversely, when using unlimited vacation policies, a company avoids the liability of unused time off, and once the employee resigns from the firm, no compensation is made.

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As it is palpable from the discussion, companies perform human resources management with the aim of increasing productivity among their personnel. Notably, policies have different effects on motivating employees to work more effectively. Some of the human resource programs relate to vacation time for the workers. The analysis identifies the benefits of implementing unlimited vacation policies instead of traditional options in a company. Research reveals considerable benefits of unlimited vacation policies to both employees and employers. The company creates a capable team to achieve its productive objectives by allowing workers to enjoy flexibility in balancing their work and life demands. Furthermore, companies avoid the obligation of paying employees for unused vacation days in case they leave. Hence, managers should understand the policy’s benefits and implement it to create highly motivated and productive teams.


Works Cited

Ain, Aron.Making Unlimited Paid Vacation Work.” Harvard Business Review, 2017, Accessed 22 Oct. 2018.

McGregor, Jena.Why Unlimited Vacation is Basically a No-Brainer for Employers.” Washington Post, 2015, Accessed 22 Oct. 2018.

Sammer, Joanne. “Unlimited Paid Time Off: A Good or Bad Idea?” SHRM, 2014, Accessed 22 Oct. 2018.


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