6 companies with sweet time-off perks
Need an incentive to take a vacation? These employers have some enticing propositions for you.
Remember when you were a kid and the unmitigated joy you felt when you got to stay home from school for a day or two? Ah, there’s nothing like a day off—except, of course, many days off, especially when you’re getting paid to do so.
But increasingly, it seems employees aren’t taking advantage of their days off. According to the U.S. Travel Association, more than 40% of Americans with paid time off still don’t use their yearly allotment, squandering a total of 429 million unused days. The benefits of time off—higher employee productivity, better morale, stronger retention rates—aren’t lost on managers. As such, some companies are now offering additional incentives for employees to take a vacation, while others offer sabbaticals after a few years’ worth of service.
So if you need a little nudging in order to clock out and enjoy some downtime, these companies sweeten the pot with some generous incentives.
Locations hiring: San Francisco; Portland, Oregon
Number of employees: 1,600
What it does: Airbnb is a platform for listing and booking different types of accommodations for travelers around the world.
Time-off perks: It offers a $500 quarterly travel credit that employees can use to book accommodations on Airbnb. “This gives all employees a chance to regularly use the product and get closer to our host community,” says Brittany Cornejo, a public relations specialist with Airbnb in San Francisco. “Also, by providing the credit, we encourage employees to make the most of their paid time off because we understand how important it is to decompress from time to time.”
Locations hiring: Denver
Number of employees: 190
What it does: Tessitura Network is a software company that provides a customer-relationship management platform for businesses focused on arts, culture and entertainment.
Time-off perks: A paid, seven-week sabbatical after seven years of employment. “Our seven-week sabbatical program gives team members the chance to step back, recharge their batteries and have a significant chunk of time to engage in something that is meaningful to them,” says Jack Rubin, Tessitura’s president. “Everyone returns with a contagious energy that spreads throughout the organization and offers life-changing perspectives that benefit all of us.”
Locations hiring: Multiple, nationwide
Number of employees: 125,000+ worldwide
What it does: Marriott International is a global lodging company with nearly 4,500 properties in 87 countries and territories.
Time-off perks: Hotel discounts, plus vacation-package discounts on bundled airfare and hotel with options to add rental cars and activities, are available to associates. “One of the benefits of working at Marriott is taking advantage of a wide range of associate discounts that are unique to our industry and our company,” says Angela Wiggins, senior director of corporate relations. “Many of these discounts are also offered to family members and some—such as hotel room discounts—are even available to friends.”
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Locations hiring: Denver; San Francisco
Number of employees: 78
What it does: FullContact is a cloud-based contact-management software company.
Time-off perks: The company has a three-week minimum paid vacation policy, and employees can take more if they need to. Additionally, employees receive $7,500 to go on vacation, with one catch: They must disconnect completely from work. If they check in through email or do any work-related activity, they don’t get the money. “At FullContact, the core value is ‘Be Awesome with People.’ Since ‘worldly’ is the W in AWESOME, we encourage people to travel the world,” says Bart Lorang, co-founder and CEO. “As a result, I get more productive, happier employees. I would rather have them super-productive and super-charged when they’re working rather than constantly at a 70 to 60% state.”
Locations hiring: Washington, D.C.
Number of employees: 2,500
What it does: The World Wildlife Fund is a conservation organization that works around the world to protect the planet’s natural resources.
Time-off perks: Employees in the U.S. office get every other Friday off, called “Panda Fridays” in honor of the organization’s panda logo. “Panda Fridays give employees a day for personal activities and reduce the building’s carbon footprint by cutting down on the use of utilities,” says Sarah Fogel, deputy director of media and external affairs with the World Wildlife Fund.
Locations hiring: Seattle
Number of employees: 200+
What it does: Moz is a Seattle-based software company that creates tools for search engine optimization and website performance tracking, as well as other products for inbound marketers.
Time-off perks: Employees get four weeks of paid time off and $3,000 in vacation reimbursement per year. “We do it to incent employees to unplug from the day-to-day and take time away to recharge and refresh,” says Angela Cherry, Moz’s director of communications. “We find that ‘paid’ paid vacation is a big motivator for getting employees to take time away from the office to go on fun adventures and spend time with loved ones.”
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