How Employee Vacations Can Make You Money

There are a lot of things you can do to make your business better and grow your bottom line. One of the most important? Send your employees on vacation. Seriously. Encouraging workers to take time off is actually good for your company and your revenue. Here’s how…
Vacations Combat Burnout
Vacations are the number one (and arguably, only) way to give your employees the rest they need to avoid being burnt out by their job. Rates of burnout have been on the rise. Burnt out employees will be disengaged from their work — lowering accuracy, stifling creativity, and costing you in productivity. Workers experiencing stress from burnout may begin experiencing symptoms of depression and physical ailments requiring frequent trips to the doctor.

Employees need rest from the stressors of the workplace, but burnout can’t be solved overnight. A vacation is a perfect option to start off a long-term solution. Sure, changes will need to be made in the office, but the simple act of getting away and unplugging from work for a time will help burnt out employees gain some semblance of recovery. A non-burnt-out employee is more productive, takes fewer absences, and is less likely to quit.
Time Off Increases Productivity
Way back in the early 1900s, Henry Ford noticed that when workers took an extra day off from work each week, they were more productive even though they were working for less time. This extraordinary revelation is what led to the modern-day 5-day work week / 2-day weekend. What Henry Ford discovered is just as true today as it was then. In fact, some companies are even switching to a 4-day work week to help employees achieve a better work/life balance.

When you encourage employees to take time off, you are encouraging rest and relaxation. Vacations and even extended weekends allow people to catch up on sleep which is vital for productivity. Motivation and drive are also two of the biggest contributing factors to employee productivity. Time off to reflect on life and gain new experiences is crucial to increasing drive and productivity. Thus, employees returning from vacation are more energized to take on their work. A more productive employee will make a positive impact on your bottom line.
Rest and Relaxation Decrease Health Issues
Employees with a healthy work/life balance also tend to have healthier bodies and minds. Stress leads to a variety of physical symptoms and lifestyle diseases. When your workers are suffering from physical ailments or mental anguish, they will frequently visit doctors and psychiatrists. Not only can this lead to chronic absenteeism, but it also increases the costs of healthcare.

Vacations and time off allow for both activity and rest. Staying active will improve physical health and resting allows the mind to relax from stress. When you decrease absenteeism and lower health care costs, you grow your bottom line.
Vacations Eliminate Unused PTO
Perhaps the most direct impact of vacations on your revenue stream is when employees leave unused PTO on your books. American employees left over 700 million vacation days on the table last year which equated to an average of $1898 in liability per employee. That’s over $224 billion in liability to American companies.1

PTO that rolls over is paid out at an employee’s current salary. So, when a worker with unused vacation gets a raise, you have automatically cost your company money. Leaving PTO on the books is a big liability and can easily get out of control if none of your employees are taking time off. When you encourage your employees to take their time off, you eliminate unused and rolled over PTO from your books; thus, saving your company money now and in the future.
Travel Benefits are a Great Recruitment Tool
Unemployment is at an all-time low which means attracting top talent to your company is more difficult than before. Offering a travel benefit, unlimited PTO, or just encouraging employees to take their vacation time can reflect positively on your company and draw workers to apply for your open positions. One company even tweets out pictures of their employees on vacation to show how seriously they take their time off. Using a solid vacation policy to entice new hires can put your company ahead of the pack without necessitating expensive recruiting tactics.
Time Off Decreases Turnover
Just as vacations can be used as a recruitment tool, so too can they help you keep the employees you already have. Offering and encouraging time off will combat burnout in employees. Burnt out workers pose the largest risk for departure. The costs of turnover range from 40% of that person’s annual salary to over 200% for high-level positions such as doctors and CEOs.

When companies use travel as an incentive or offer travel benefits to their employees, they can raise company loyalty which will keep employees around. The fewer people who leave, the less the cost of turnover will be and the more your profits will soar.
Time Off Boosts the Economy
Time off doesn’t just benefit your company directly but can lead to indirect benefits for the entire economy. Estimates suggest that if American workers took all their vacation days each year it would result in $160 billion in tourism spending and support over a million more jobs.2 Your company could see the benefits of this but only if workers start taking more time off. It starts with you.

Every company wants to be wildly profitable. By reducing expenses related to burnout, loss of productivity, poor employee health, recruitment, and turnover, companies can add to their bottom line. The best way to reduce these costs is to encourage your employees to take their vacation time.