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In theory it would be great for employees to work on more of an honor system where they take the vacation time they need without ignoring or shirking on work responsibilities. In our line of work, we know plenty of employees who don't use their vacation time that is offered to them. It would be great to see quality of life needs of employees met in this way, cool idea, not sure if it would really work across the board for all companies. Interesting read, I'm reposting on our Twitter feed @jpatrickjobs

Elissa:

Good points. While programs like unlimited vacation sound wonderful in theory, the important thing is to figure out how they would work in reality, in our own organizations. Thanks for the comment!

A hundred hearts would be too few. To carry all my love for you. excellent and spot on!

It would be easy to assume that people would abuse this privilege, but companies may find that this isn't always the case. I know a couple of people who work in a company offering unlimited sick days, and none of them take more than four a year, surprisingly. It would take careful study and consideration and an understanding of employees' habits before implementing this.

How would you handle employees who have a lot of time off that they've accrued? Wouldn't they feel slighted if you instituted this policy? Would the company have to pay them for their vacation time?

Susan:

Amen to your "it would take careful study and consideration and an understanding of employees' habits before implementing this" line - hopefully advice that people considering this benefit take to heart.

DG:

As Susan wisely notes above, any company considering this change will want to carefully study their employee group and their time off habits - and make a plan for transitioning, particularly if employees have large accruals in place - before proceeding. I am not an expert in this area, but I expect that a sound transition plan plan would indeed involve paying for some or all accruals in order to make employees "whole" before embarking on the new unlimited program.

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    Compensation consultant Ann Bares is the Managing Partner of Altura Consulting Group. Ann has more than 20 years of experience consulting with organizations in the areas of compensation and performance management.

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