The 5 step HR holiday guide

The 5 step HR holiday guide

It is that time of the year that every employee looks forward to, whereas every employer dreads! The word ‘dread’ can sound overdramatic, but let us face it, the holiday season is undoubtedly the busiest season for any HR department. With multiple time-off requests coming in, HR needs to play the diplomatic role of balancing the workforce at work while making sure your people are happy and not naughty.

Not all organizations have the luxury of closing for the holidays and granting a vacation for their employees to celebrate. For some, the holidays can be the peak of their operational year, this includes retail, hospitality, certain manufacturing organizations, and service sectors. But for most, this is a period of slow work and wrapping up for the year.

We at PeoplesHR have no doubt that your HR department is as busy as Santa’s workshop, and we are here to be your trusted elves ready to get your work done smoothly and swiftly.

Step 1: Share your company holiday policy ahead of time.

Every company has a certain policy regarding holidays. Make sure that you refresh your employees with this policy to avoid any disappointment and confusion. This helps to eliminate last-minute time-off requests and awkward rejections.

Pro-Tip: Use your HR Solution to notify your employees of your company policy and with PeoplesHR, you can make it a mandatory document to read, where your employees get a notification that must be accepted, thereby avoiding the chance of missing it out due to the holiday rush.

Step 2: Have an open communication system in play.

Encourage your employees to discuss with their teams about their vacation plans. This provides a fair chance for all employees to apply for leave without too many people applying for leave on the same set of days. It is advisable to give teams the autonomy to decide the priority when it comes to taking time off, thereby creating a space without discrimination and biases.

Pro-Tip: With an HR Solution, you can notify your employees on their leave balances for the year and what is available to be carried forward. Added to this, PeoplesHR helps you identify who has already applied for leave on the same days that you wish to take, making it more straightforward for your employees.

Step 3: Have your payroll sorted.

The holiday season is an expensive season for all and there is no doubt that all your employees are looking forward to their payday and their year-end bonuses if applicable. The last thing any HR department wants are complaints about late salary remittances and mistakes payroll mistakes.

Pro-Tip: Make sure that your HR Solution is up to date with all employee payments outside of payroll. This would include taxable fringe benefits, shareholder benefits, bonuses, added commissions, compensations etc.

Step 4: Bring on the festive cheer.

With everyone in the holiday mood, who wants to come to a dull work environment? As HR, the options and activities that you could do within the organization are endless. Whether big or small, take the opportunity to bring your employees together and make them feel merry. From festive activities to small appreciations, it is the best time to motivate your employees who must come to work despite the holiday season, or it also can be a good way to wrap up the year with a thank you!

Pro-Tip: Use your HR Solution to notify employees of upcoming events and send in your appreciations and messages to employees wishing them for the season and a job well done.

Step 5: Consider alternative work options

With the pandemic working from home, 4-day work weeks, and hybrid working options are not uncommon words anymore, we have seen it work for most organizations, summing up to a flexible work environment. If it is viable to encourage such a working environment, why not do so? This gives an opportunity for employees to get their work done while providing the flexibility to enjoy the holiday season with their loved ones. Making it a win-win situation for both the employer and employee.

Pro-Tip: With the help of your HR Solution, notify your employees of the new working patterns and update your payroll for the season. The PeoplesHR Mobile App helps to capture employee attendance from anywhere, at any time at your convenience. 

Bring out the decorations and tune in some festive music, it’s time to kick-start the holiday season with a cheer. After all, no one likes working with the grinch who waits to ruin your holiday plans.

Thuraiyah Mohideen
Thuraiyah Mohideen
Assistant Manager - Marketing

About the Author : Since 2017, I have researched and written extensively on culture and best practices in the HR industry. Being surrounded by talented HR experts who share their experiences and insights at PeoplesHR, I am keen to help HR professionals learn more about the HR industry, find answers to their questions, and discover practical solutions to the challenges they face every day. Assistant Manager - Marketing