Our holiday / vacation policy – unlimited with bonuses
There’s now 7 of us working on Server Density (and we’re hiring 2 more) and our holiday policy has always been based around the idea of “unlimited days off, within reason”. Our official policy is as follows (copied directly from our internal policy document):
- The assumption is everyone is available every working day of the week (Monday to Friday), from 10am to 6pm your local time. This isn’t a strict rule and times are flexible as you see fit.
- “Available” = logged in to Hipchat and around to respond to messages.
- Everyone is allowed unlimited and unrestricted holiday time, within reason.
- “Within reason” means what you probably think it means e.g. you can’t have a year off! It just gives us flexibility to say you can have time off whenever you like, but not to abuse that.
- What’s normal for time off varies from country to country but a reasonable guideline is 30 working days per calendar year, excluding local public holidays.
- Please bear milestones in mind, particularly if someone else is relying on you to complete some project. The milestones are flexible and I’ll happily move them around to fit in with you. The only exception are certain launches which have a set date for promotional purposes, e.g. the plugin directory launch at the 24th May 2011 MongoSF conference. Please also consider holiday being taken by someone else at the same time. We’re still small so we can’t have everyone off at the same time!
- A few hours off during the working day doesn’t count. If you’re not around for a few hours then please let me know but it doesn’t count towards holiday. This applies for gym, doctors appointments, flying lessons, cat herding, etc.
- All holiday is logged in the calendar
- Since we’re all in different countries with different public holidays, I will assume everyone is available every working day of the week. So please let me know if you have a local public holiday and what your availability is for that day. This doesn’t “count” for holiday purposes (even though we’re not technically counting).
- However, we are counting. If you take 25 working days off each calendar year, you will get a bonus at the end of the year of 50% of your monthly salary in December e.g. if you take at least 25 days working days off during the year, and you’re being paid £100 in December, you’ll get an extra £50. Why? Take your holiday, relax, don’t burn out.
In a small company everyone has an important role and is relied upon to get things done, which means there is necessarily more stress and pressure. As such, people will work when necessary to get things done so this has to be offset by the ability to have holiday time when it suits them, and to actively encourage and ensure that everyone does take time off. This avoids burnout and is the reasoning behind the holiday bonus, even if work is mostly fun and enjoyable!
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