The holiday season means fewer employees are going to be available. Some people are on vacation, others attend family matters, and the holidays are just an all-around busy time of the year. Business is typically booming during the Christmas Season, and employers are tasked with drumming up a holiday schedule that works for their business.
When we think of the holidays, the last thing that comes to mind is being seated at a desk all day. Workers in the retail and service industries are supposed to work even longer hours during the busy holiday season. Hence, leaving managers with an equally demanding workload to ensure that their employees fill every holiday shift.
Although it is easier said than done, developing a strategy for managing schedules can help avoid issues in the future. Labor is in high demand, but your employees collectively need more time off. Nowadays most companies use HR tools to manage all kinds of leave management. You can read how a leading stable achieves success using a staff leave HR tool for their team. What are you going to do? Let’s jump straight into the thirteen tips to help employers with holiday schedules.
1. Plan Ahead
Starting early on that holiday work schedule is going to help everyone be on the same page. All workers need to know what’s expected of them. They are making their holiday plans, too.
Therefore, it is imperative to communicate a holiday schedule to them as soon as possible. At the same time, employees should also be communicating their availability and requests for time off ahead of time. Several industrial enterprises have their holiday schedules planned out months in advance, and there’s no reason why any other sort of business couldn’t do the same thing.
2. Establish Requirements for Shift Minimums
Employers are tasked with approving vacations and time off during the holidays without harming the business. Treat everyone fairly by establishing minimum required shifts over the holidays. Think about the quieter periods and the slow times.
Prioritize employee scheduling, and minimum required shifts during your busiest times. Another alternative is to split the week between two employees. The objective behind staggered employee vacation is always to have coverage while giving employees holiday time off.
3. Give Employees Some Freedom
Once you determine what shifts you need to be covered, you can also allow employees to pick what shifts they want to work. Giving them a little freedom during the busy holiday season is going to keep company morale in a good place. As long as everybody is playing fair and the shifts are covered, everyone wins. You even get to delegate some of the holiday schedules.
Emphasize teamwork during the holiday season, and find ways to strengthen the team if needed. You can hire temporary help over the holidays, and you can even bring in former employees. While hiring temporary employees is a little more costly, it helps quickly fill those gaps when you’re in a crunch. Start temporary employees prior to the holidays so that they have a chance to get their feet wet before the fun begins.
5. Post-Holiday Schedule In Advance
Holiday schedules should always be posted in advance according to the travel site My Hotel Break. This gives everyone a heads up so that they are on the same page with you about work over the holiday season.
Furthermore, it provides you time to work out any kinks if necessary. After determining the number and types of employees required for holiday work, the Employer will publish the roster on Tuesday at 12 p.m. before the holiday. Full-time and part-time regular schedule workers will be exempted from duty on their designated holiday.
6. Annual Rotation is recommended
Keep note of which employees had which days off throughout the holiday season from year to year so that you can compare results. If you ask certain employees to give up prolonged vacation time to keep the office running this year. You must know who they are and when they worked, so that you may delegate that task to others the next year.
If your employees know that they will not be placed into the same scenario year after year, they will be considerably more likely to work during the holidays without complaining.
7. First In, First Out
Every year, schedule issues set coworkers against each other. The policy might state that time off is offered first-come, first-served. That way, managers can prepare for the absence and offer enough coveraging, Steinitz says. He also advised teams to establish an editable calendar to identify coverage issues or conflicts.
Ask employees to update their calendars immediately and alert their bosses; managers should approve requests fast. Once authorized by the team leader, workers will know when they must accommodate others’ schedules or need assistance with.
8. Time Off As a Model
Since excellent managers are not taking time off, it is simple for employees to infer that good employees are not taking time off as well. Although words are essential, imitating action is the most effective method of communicating.
“I believe that openness is vital,” Cox stated, “because we all know that there is a difference between policy and practice, and if you genuinely want the policy and practice to complement one another, you must set an example by being transparent.”
After all, leadership is ultimately accountable for demonstrating work-life balance, according to Stich. “This contributes to the development of a business culture that is free of vacation guilt.” their own.
9. Workload Difficulties Must be Resolved
Similarly, if employees think they are unable to take time off because there is no one to cover for them, “it is my responsibility as a leader to rectify that as a capacity and workload issue,” Cox said. The ability to cross-train, or train workers in positions other than their own, may provide employees the confidence to take time off without leaving the rest of the team in a difficult situation.
Several firms have begun instituting forced vacation rules, which Stitch believes will assist in motivating those who do not take vacations. These can reflect an employer’s dedication to the well-being and health of its employees, but if obligatory vacation is not a possibility, assisting employees in managing their workloads can be pretty beneficial.
10. Don’t Forget to Reward Your Workers
We’ve already spoken about holiday pay, but there’s more to incentives than simply monetary compensation. There are many various methods to express your appreciation for your employees’ efforts, and it is the thought that matters just as much as the award.
Working over the Christmas season is a significant commitment for many individuals; thus, it is important to recognize this and compensate them appropriately.
During a hectic season, express your appreciation to staff for their efforts. For example, you can accomplish this by providing additional paid time off after the holidays are over, hosting a holiday party, and allowing remote workers to work.
11. Decide on Holiday Pay
Working over the holidays is a sacrifice for most individuals. Offering holiday compensation is one way to thank your staff for their efforts. For example, pay 1.5x for work done on Christmas or New Year’s Day. That would be a fantastic technique to encourage undesirable changes.
A bar may not need to be staffed on Christmas Day, but it must be open. Sadly, recruiting volunteers for these days may be difficult. However, good communication and incentives can make people pleased about missing a day with their families.
12. Be Open and Honest About Your Schedule When You Have Busy Dates
One of the most damaging things you can do is to raise people’s expectations to dash them at the last minute. That’s why it is crucial to establish clear expectations as well as black-out dates before putting together any seasonal timetables.
There are specific days and shifts in many sectors when it is vital to have everyone on their toes. For example, if you own the most romantic restaurant in the city, the last thing you want on Valentine’s Day is to be forced to close because of a lack of staffing. People will comprehend this if you set clear expectations and convey them clearly.
13. Self-resolution Should be encouraged
Some time off demands, such as non-refundable airfares or those impacting children’s schedules, may be challenging to modify. Conflicts or several requests for a vacation can put managers in a difficult position when deciding who should be granted leave and who should be turned down for the opportunity.
To encourage open communication within the team, Steinitz proposed that they “encourage individuals to be aware of each other’s plans for time off so that you may create an equitable covering schedule.”
Even if some people will have requirements that cannot be accommodated, the team will typically be able to rearrange things in a satisfactory way.
During the Christmas season, several businesses experience their busiest period of the year. Even if that is not the situation for your company, scheduling employees during this time might be extremely difficult.
Planning ahead, communicating clearly, investing in your calendar, and rewarding people’s efforts will all help to make this process more manageable and enjoyable. If you can do all of these tasks, holiday preparations should no longer be the nightmare they once were.