“The working world has changed and has become more flexible than ever before. Employees should embrace that and if they want to ask about unlimited PTO, they should.”ALIZA SWEIRY UK MANAGING DIRECTOR, AQUENT
Picture the scene. You've been feeling burned out lately, you need a break, a three-day weekend, maybe. Or perhaps even the whole week off work. Without doing any arithmetics, and figuring out much residual annual leave you have, you simply ask your boss if it's alright you take some time off. Your paid time off is limitless.
Sounds too good to be true, doesn't it? Unfortunately, in some cases, it is.
Unlimited paid time off is an incentive many companies are bringing forth, in an attempt to curb the Great Resignation plaguing the professional world in the pandemic.
Netflix, LinkedIn and EventBrite are some of the companies enticing employees with the offer. And they're not the only ones. Job website Indeed.co.uk reported that since 2017, the number of vacancies boasting unlimited holiday increased by 148%.
In theory, the concept allows people to take off as much time as they want – with companies adding on some stipulations. For example, they may ask you don't take three weeks in a row, or you refrain from absences during important periods.
In reality though, limitless annual leave can leave people in precarious positions – how much time is too much time, for example? And what happens if you don't take it? Or if you leave a job?
But interestingly, among those who were offered unlimited PTO, one study showed, that people took fewer days off than those with a set number. (…)
How can we feel more empowered to talk to our bosses about possibly utilising this method, while addressing its disadvantages?
Aliza Sweiry, UK managing director for a large recruiting company, Aquent, says the cons don't mean we have to discard such ideas.
She tells HuffPost: “It's great if companies want to offer this and it sounds like a great benefit in theory, but it is always a good idea to ask lots of questions and find out how the policy really works in practice at the organisation.
“Employees might want to ask, what is the average number of days employees are taking? How does the work get covered when people are off? How do the employees feel about having unlimited PTO? Do they see it as a huge benefit rather than an allocated number of holiday day allowance?
This article originally appeared on HuffPost UK.