Unlimited Time Off Improves Employee Health

According to an article in Business Insider, approximately 1% of companies nationwide offer unlimited vacation, also called unlimited time off. An additional 2% are considering adopting an unlimited time off policy in 2014. Unlimited time off combines vacation, sick, and personal days without any set limit. Obviously the concept is most likely to succeed when companies have motivated employees who can balance time off with workload deadlines.

Benefits of unlimited time off

United Press International noted the following: Numerous studies show that time off improves employee health, relationships and productivity. The improved health benefits include lower blood pressure, stress, and weight gain. All of these things save companies money on health insurance and sick leave. Improved relationships and productivity are good for the bottom line, too.

Unlimited time off can be a great recruiting tool, especially since so few companies offer it. The companies who do offer unlimited time off can often land top-notch employees, according to Business Insider.

In terms of business accounting, because human resource departments no longer need to keep track of time off, there are administrative savings. Not to mention that if an employee leaves the company, there is no cash pay out for unused leave.

Abusing unlimited time off

There is no evidence that employees offered unlimited time off abuse it. In fact, it seems that most employees do not want to harm their reputation by taking too much time off so they take an amount equal to or less than those employees who have traditional paid leave plans. In addition, because employees are trusted and given the ability to make their own decisions, employees may feel more loyal to their employer.

Bruce Elliott, director of HR at career site The Ladders, notes that unlimited time off is not feasible for all kinds of jobs. In particular, customer service type jobs with hourly employees are ill-suited for unlimited time off. But, for small companies with results driven cultures what does a company have to lose by trying it? Based on the companies already offering unlimited time off, having such a policy can be a win-win for both employer and employee.