Picture this: your office is empty. You implemented an unlimited paid time off (PTO) policy and all your employees are on tropical vacations elsewhere. Meetings are missed, reports are incomplete, clients are fuming, all while your employees are nonchalantly sipping Mai Tais. This may be the scenario you are envisioning if you’re thinking about offering unlimited PTO. But how accurate is this view? Our Advertise Purple team can shed some light on the matter.
Offering unlimited PTO might sound like a sure-fire way for employees to abandon all work, but we’ve noticed the opposite; We find ourselves encouraging our team members to take more time off for themselves, not only for vacations but intermittently throughout the week as well. We allow our team a little extra time to hit the gym, go shopping, run errands, and take care of other matters during their lunch breaks because we trust they are managing their own time and workload. Because the team understands this perk can be easily abused, they are (sometimes overly) conscious about how much time they spend away from the office.
Since we’ve implemented unlimited PTO, there are a few key benefits we have noticed, like:
- Employees are happier. Happy employees are generally more productive and produce higher quality output.
- Employees are less stressed. Employees that aren’t stressed are able to focus more on their work, not on the rest of their obligations outside of work.
- Time management has improved. When employees know they will be out of the office, they become better at appropriately prioritizing tasks.
- Employees feel valued, respected, empowered. Giving your employees a perk and trusting they will act responsibly can bring out the best in their work ethic because they want to earn their benefits.
A team member had this to say about the policy:
“Unlimited PTO has helped my work/life balance because I don’t have to miss important life/family/friend events. Also, I like that I can leave the office to exercise and clear my head.”
Now, we understand that a PTO policy isn’t all sunshine and mimosas for every company. Issues can arise if general guidelines are not established and followed. This issue can easily be mitigated if clear goals and objectives are established prior to when employees are out, so they may plan accordingly to meet them. The key is communication within your team.
The bottom line is this: unlimited PTO won’t cut into your bottom line if implemented strategically. Have a plan to cover all your bases, that way no work is missed. Setting clearly defined goals that must be achieved holds everyone accountable and allows for planning in advance. Employees deserve unlimited PTO because if they’re similar to our Advertise Purple team, they aren’t just completing their work in the office; they are answering emails on weekends and perhaps even taking calls at night. They work when there is work to be done. So, if their time working isn’t restricted, why should their time off be?