Mandatory Vacation

Jul 27, 2015

I just returned from a very relaxing camping trip and am soon leaving for another vacation in Silver Lake, Michigan. Being on vacation makes me think about those who never take a break. According to a survey, nearly 15% of U.S. employees who are entitled to paid vacation time haven’t used any of it in the past year.

Taking a break from the daily grind is healthy and often much needed. Many firms have implemented mandatory vacation policies which requires everyone to completely disconnect from work for at least 2 weeks each year—no exceptions.

Scenic_Ocean4Do you have mandatory vacations at your place of employment? What would you think if such was enforced?

Mandatory vacations have several important purposes. Not only do they contribute to employee satisfaction and a happier workforce, but they also prevent fraud. If you are the only employee who manages a given task and no one else reviews your work, you may be more likely to commit fraud. If you are forced to take time off and have someone else take over, you are less likely to commit fraud.

Mandatory vacations also promote cross training. You have to train someone else to at least do some of the tasks of another person. This can be vital if you lose a person due to termination, illness, quitting, etc.

I was just at a client who had the same controller for 30+ years and no one else ever did his job. With our help, they are able to understand his processes and instill some organization. However, the organization could have saved a significant amount of time, money, and frustration if they would have anticipated such issue and cross-trained employees.

If you have someone who has not taken a vacation in a while, now may be the time to insist they do. It could be one of the most important things you’ve done.

Categories: Cost Accounting