• Trish Hall

Take a break!


How many of your employee's have large annual leave balances owing to them? Do you know how much that costs your bottom line from a financial liability and a productivity perspective?

You might think it's great that your staff are loyal, hardworking and work long hours. To begin with their productivity might be high and your return on investment is proving fruitful.

How long can a high performing race car keep ahead of the race without being serviced before it tires? It's no different with your staff. If you're not making sure they take their annual holidays and they're also working long hours you will find in the long term that they aren't able to maintain the same level of productivity and that it starts to lag.

I'm not saying you should scrutinize the use of annual leave, talk to your staff and find out their plans. Perhaps they are banking their leave to take a big overseas holiday, and that is fine too. But if they don't have a plan to take a break you may need to take control.

The Holidays Act allows an employer to give no less than 14 days' notice of the requirement to take leave. Before you give that instruction, you want to make sure you've first tried a collaborative approach. If you can't get agreement you can make that request.

On the contrary, you might have an employee who uses all their leave and some. If you have this situation, take advice on what to do. Depending on the facts will depend on the course of action.