Once again Christmas is upon us; where have the past 12 months gone? 2016 has undoubtedly been a year few of us will forget, and the fast approaching festive season is certainly a welcome arrival. Most of us will be celebrating the festivities, indulging in mountains of mince pies and endless refills of our favourite tipple.
Of course, there will be plenty of people working over the Christmas period too, especially those in retail, hospitality, and public services. And unless businesses shut shop over the no-man’s-land between Christmas and New Year, there will be plenty of workers in the office as well.
Christmas is a time for family, friends, and taking a well-deserved break at the end of the year. And all staff, whether they are working over the festive period or not, should be able to relax knowing that their work-life balance is taken care of. This means all holidays, rotas, office hours, and remote working policies are in place and readily available to everyone. And there’s no better or more accessible place than the staff intranet.
Christmas Bank Holidays
The Bank Holidays over the Christmas period are different every year, and there’s added confusion when they fall over the weekend. Use your intranet calendar to add the relevant Christmas Bank Holidays, so that all staff know when they need to be in the office, or when they can claim lieu days or overtime should they need to be at work. It’s a simple process, but one that will be invaluable for staff to check key dates at-a-glance.
Promote time off work
Taking time off work is proven to improve productivity and re-energise staff. However, a survey showed that, despite knowing the benefits, 34% of employers aren’t actively encouraging staff vacation. This inevitably feeds into the guilt-culture that some workplaces embody, where staff feel unable to take time off for fear of looking less dedicated to their job.
Don’t be one of those companies. Encourage staff to take time off work, especially over the Christmas period when workers need extra time to travel and see family. Create an announcement on your intranet homepage, reminding staff to submit their holiday requests in good time. The benefits of a well-rested team will be second-to-none once they return to work refreshed after the holidays.
Remote working policies
Some companies (like us!) allow their staff to work from home over the Christmas period. This is fantastic for those who still need to be working, but cannot get into the office because they are away visiting family abroad, or due to Christmas travel disruption (train strikes are certainly causing a stir this year..!)
Create a remote working policy on your intranet, explaining the eligible days and working hours. Better still, communicate the policy by adding a widget to your intranet homepage, ensuring that staff don’t miss out on key info.