One of the many complications that the conditions of the pandemic have created for employers is the question of managing annual leave as the world opens up again. While summer 2021 looks like it’s going to be all about the UK for holidays, optimistic Brits are already booking up getaways abroad from the autumn. In fact, Thomas Cook has said 40% of its recent bookings are for October onwards. With many UK businesses already struggling from the impact of recent lockdowns, our HR consultants have looked at the options for coping with mass annual leave requests and the potential backlog that might now exist.
Clearly, 2020 was not a great year for holidays. In recognition of this, the government announced changes to existing rules on holiday carry over in March last year. These rules mean that employees who could not take holiday because it was not ‘reasonably practical’ would be able to carry over up to two weeks holiday over the next two consecutive leave years. This could create some significant complications in business where employees have accumulated a lot of annual leave, especially if there is a rush to take this within the same period of time. So, what are the options for managing it?
Coronavirus has also caused another big issue when it comes to staff holidays and that is the risk of having to isolate on their return. It is essential you communication with staff about their individual plans, particularly if foreign travel is planned. This allows both you and them to fully understand and appreciate the implications on the return to the UK, as it may include self-isolation and restrictions on their return.
The pandemic has created plenty of challenges for employers but an annual leave backlog doesn’t have to be one of them. If you ant to talk to one of Human Resources consultants don't hesitate to get in touch.
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