No matter how many vacation days employees get, one week, two or three, there are always employees who will not take a significant portion of their paid vacation time.

According to a study by the U.S. Travel Association’s Project: Time Off Initiative, 52 percent of American employees reported having unused vacation days at the end of 2017.

How average is this in America and what are the downsides to this? Furthermore, what can you do about it if this is the case with employees at your company?

My Employees Take Most of Their Vacation Days

If your employees take most of their vacations days, this is great news! You most likely have well rounded employees who understand how to balance their home and work life. But even if your employees take most of their vacation days, there are still a few warning signs to look for. The first thing to watch for is those vacation days they don’t take, as even having two or three days of unused paid vacation time can signal a loss in productivity, or in worker satisfaction.

Another thing to look for is employees who go on their vacations, but still work while they’re sitting on the beach or after the kids have gone to bed. This not only doesn’t allow the employee the chance to fully unplug from work in order to come back refreshed, it could also set a precedent for other employees to do the same. According to a study from job placement agency Accountemps, roughly 56 percent of workers surveyed said they touch base with work when they’re on a vacation, which is up from 41 percent of workers in 2016. In order to discourage this, have your employees leave their laptops at the office and actively promote a culture of work/life balance.

My Employees Take Very Few of Their Vacation Days

If your employees take very few of their vacation days, you may need to make some changes internally. Not only does this create a culture of stress and overwork for your employees, it signifies a huge financial loss for your company. Why pay for your employees to have paid vacation days if they don’t use them? This can also affect your company in other ways, such as frayed relationships with clients and high employee turnover.

How can this problem be solved? One company came up with a brilliant idea. Simply create a mandatory vacation policy where employees must use it or lose it. This company even went so far as to schedule mandatory week long vacations for employees every seven weeks. The results they reported were positive: an increase in productivity, creativity and employee happiness. While this may seem extreme, it’s one way to make sure that everyone uses their time off, leading to an overall more productive company.

Are you looking for a platform that can help you track your employees’ vacation time? GreenLink Payroll provides cloud-based technology that can help you track benefits, payroll, time, HR and talent. For more information, contact us here.