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Thursday, 02 June 2011 10:52

Summer Hours: HR Policy Highlight

Posted by  Christopher Lihzis

Summer hours can be a perk with more bang for your buck than more traditional employee benefits.

 

Summer Hours can be a way for both the company and the employee to enjoy summer while maintaining employee productivity.  An increasing number of companies are offering flexible work arrangements, such as summer hours, to enhance work-life balance, improve employee morale, and increase employee retention.  While summer hours are different from a flexible-work program, in that all employees enjoy the benefit, many of the considerations in implementing summer hours are similar to that of a flexible-work program. 

The following considerations should be taken into account when developing a summer hours program:

  • Timing of the program. Determine the start and end date of your program. 
  • Schedule. There are a number of different options that can be implemented, including: 
    • One day off per week
    • Shortened work day on multiple days
    • Early closing on Friday or shortened work day
    • Change in core hours/schedule shift  
    • Compressed work week
  • Organizational goals. Your summer hours program must align with the company's objectives and goals to be successful. 
  • Consider the business. As you choose the plan that works for your company, think about your daily and weekly business demands.
  • Exceptions. There may be times when all employees, or just a few, will need to forego their summer hours. 
  • Think outside the box. There may be a non-traditional hours program that will enhance your business and give employees some temporary flexibility in their summer schedules. 
  • Evaluation. Let employees know, upon implementation, that the program will be evaluated and may be changed at any time due to business demands.

The benefits to a summer hours program can be great, but should be carefully thought out prior to implementation.  While summer is the time many employees want to have fun, the needs of the business don't disappear.  Developing a program that will support both the needs of the employee and the company will be a win-win for all!


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