Say Hello to Holiday Vacation Requests
The holiday season for many people means trying to spend as much time with their family and friends as possible. Yet, for many retail and hospitality businesses, it means their most stressful and busiest period of the year. There is no denying that as an employer in these industries, you will be sure to receive many holidays vacation requests from workers. As much as you may appreciate that your workers deserve some time off during the holidays, you will also need their support during this busy season too.
In order to avoid any uncomfortable conversations when it comes to workers holiday schedules, we have listed a number of time and scheduling management tips for you to keep in mind. These will help you to ensure that your workers stay happy while not sacrificing the success of your business either.
Avoid Scheduling Stress: Managing Your Workers Holiday Schedules
Managing holiday vacation requests can be stressful at the best of times. That’s why it is important for you to keep on top of shift work schedules in the lead up to the Christmas period. Being organized is key here and with a little preparation, you can avoid scheduling stress.
Stay Strict On Scheduling
It is important to stay strict when it comes to scheduling around the holiday period. Ideally, you should provide your workers with a vacation request cut-off date. Rather than working on a first-come, first-served basis make sure to give your workers plenty of notice as to when their vacation requests need to be in by. Once this date has passed, let your workers know that what their holiday work schedule will be. Obviously, there may be times when exceptions need to be made in terms of illness or personal reasons but by staying strict on your holiday scheduling will mean that both you and your workers are on the same page.
Depending on your business and vacation requests, consider juggling shifts by having one employee cover a morning shift and another cover an evening shift. This will mean that you will still be supported during your busiest period while workers will still get to enjoy the festive period.
Be Clear About Your Expectations
There may be certain days during the holiday period where you will need all hands on deck. With corporate events being organized and sales happening in retail stores during the lead up to Christmas, it’s not always possible to allow workers to have the vacation days that they would like.
If you are expecting any ‘blackout’ days during the holiday season, it is important that you are clear about your scheduling expectations. For example, if you own a restaurant and know that New Year’s Eve will be extremely busy meaning you will need as much help as you can get, communicate this to your staff as early as possible. Being honest about the days that you will need extra support from your staff makes sure that your business stays on schedule but will also promote a sense of teamwork among staff members.
Split Up Staff Responsibilities
Splitting up staff responsibilities can be very effective when managing your workers holiday schedules. If there will be particular days when you are slightly short staffed due to other workers taking vacation days, make sure your staff can carry out multiple tasks to ensure the same work will get done. Some training may be required here but by having workers that are skilled in multiple areas will allow these days to go much smoother.
Incentivize for Undesirable Shifts
Nobody likes taking the graveyard shift or working on certain days especially during the holiday time. So, for that reason, incentivizing for these more undesirable shifts can help you make sure that you won’t be left covering them by yourself. Consider offering your staff more pay or other attractive bonuses for accepting to work these shifts.
Hire Seasonal Workers
If you would like to give your staff time off during the holidays, yet are still worried that you may be understaffed, consider hiring seasonal workers. Holiday staff can seamlessly blend in with your more permanent workers and will mean that you can have peace of mind knowing each shift will be covered. These seasonal shift workers can fill out any gaps in the holiday schedule and with the right training can make sure that the holiday period goes off without a hitch.
Manage the Holiday Season With Ease
The holiday season doesn’t have to be a time of panic for employers, especially those in hospitality and retail. By staying clear on your scheduling expectations, incentivizing staff to take on certain holiday shifts and hiring seasonal workers for extra support, you can manage the holiday season with ease. So, make sure that the only red you will see this holiday season is from the twinkling festive Christmas lights.