The pandemic has changed the reasons of taking annual leave in many ways. One of the most obvious reason of annual leave is travelling when people use a big chunk of the annual leave. But the restriction of travelling means people cannot go to holidays. Spending time with family, unavailability of childcare, attending a weeding, staying home for repair work are few other reasons why people take annual leave. Due to pandemic, most of the employees have been working from home during 2020/21 that eliminates most of the above reasons of taking annual leave. That gives the employees quite a lot of spare annual leave that they would like to carry over to next year.
According to a research by Finder commissioned Onepoll on 8–10 September 2020 to carry out a nationally representative survey of adults aged 18+, two-thirds (67%) of full-time workers in UK are planning to carry over at least one day of annual leave into their next holiday period. Of those who plan to roll over annual leave into their next holiday period they will hope to carry over an average of 5.11 days, with almost 2 in 5 full-time workers (37%) intending to take in excess of 5 days over.
As per the UK government, employees who works 5 days a week must received at least 28 days of statutory annual leave which is equivalent to 5.6 week per year. An employer can decide if they want to include bank holidays as part of statutory leave or not. Due to the pandemic and unused statutory leave, UK government issued a press release on 27th of march 2020 to confirm that the workers who have not taken all of the their statutory annual leave due to COVID19 will now be able to carry it over into next 2 years. But it is up to 4 weeks that can be carried out to next 2 years. However, this could cost UK businesses billions of pounds over the next 2 years.
But it is important that the employees take necessary breaks to make sure their well beings. Companies try to make sure that their staff’s take most of their entitled leave throughout the year but COVID situation this year will definitely affect everyone’s plan for taking a break. That is one of the reason why leave management has become important task for HR and platform like LeaveMonitor can help to make the process better.
Moby A is the co founder of the Leave Monitor platform.