As the end of the year approaches, employers can find themselves short-staffed as team members rush to use up their holiday entitlement, if they are based on calendar year.  This year there is the added complication of the Football World Cup taking place in the run up to Christmas.

So now would be a good time to check out what holidays your team have left and find out when they intend to take it.

Here are our tips for employers to help manage holiday entitlements:

  • You can allow days in excess of the statutory minimum of 5.6 weeks to be carried over into the next year if your contracts of employment allow it or if you specifically agree to it. However, you should encourage your employees to take at least the statutory minimum of 5.6 weeks per year.
  • It is a good idea to remind your staff that they will lose any holiday entitlement that they don’t take within the year (if this is what your contracts of employment state).
  • You, as the employer, can decide whether or not to approve a holiday request, so you can turn it down if the business cannot accommodate a holiday at that time (e.g. if other staff members have already booked the time off). However, you should not prevent someone from taking their full holiday entitlement for the year.
  • You can require employees to take holidays at a time of your choosing as long as you give at least double the amount of notice as the length of holiday (e.g. two day’s notice for a one-day holiday).
  • Holidays are usually granted on a “first come first served” basis so it is a good idea to keep a record of when the holiday has been requested.

We suggest starting a conversation with those who have holiday entitlements left and finding out when they want to book their holidays.  This will enable you to plan for the rest of the year (and for any World Cup holiday requests if England keep up their winning ways!).

For further information on holiday entitlements or any other HR question, contact our team of specialists on 01484 841776 or email [email protected]