The offering of summer hours is essentially a business policy in which companies provide paid time off, usually on Fridays during the summer. This takes place during the period between Memorial Day and Labor Day and it is different from the paid time off to which employees are regularly entitled.
Types of Summer Schedules
Numerous options are available for summer hours. You have the option of adopting one of the standard policies or borrowing ideas from several models to create one that reflects the needs of your employees and organization. Here are some of the most common summer schedules:
This model provides the employee with the most ownership of his or her time as it allows for personalized work schedule. Employees are able to come in as early as they wish or leave as early as they wish provided that their workload and/or hours are met.
Employees work from home for a day or more each week. This option is particularly useful for employees who are attempting to save on childcare expenses during the summer or those who want to avoid sitting in traffic. This approach is also ideal for companies that do not need workers in one location, but simply cannot afford to shut down operations for a entire day.
There are various forms in which this approach can be taken. These include having every Friday off without having to make up the time, working for half day on Fridays, but getting the afternoon off, and staggering Fridays off so someone is always in the office. This is great for those employees looking to take an extended weekend vacation.
• Compressed Workweek
This is when members of staff complete their full schedule in 4 days in order to have Friday off.
Pros of Summer Hours
By offering a modified schedule for the summer, many businesses hope this will result in improved employee morale and deliver enhanced work-life balance, while fighting against the work slowdown that typically occurs for many businesses during the summer.
This will make employees more productive, happier and more invested in the continuing success of the company. Knowing they do not have to come in at all or leave early on Friday acts as an incentive to keep workers motivated during the rest of the week.
A flexible work schedule during the summer assists employees in recharging their energy and keeping them working at peak levels. This means fewer hours are being worked but more is being accomplished.
Cons of Summer Hours
There is definitely a huge upside to summer hours; however, this approach does not make sense for all businesses. Companies that depend on a great deal of face-to-face interactions, whether between employees or with customers, could find it challenging to offer summer hours.
Additionally, small businesses must consider staffing issues that could come about with an amended summer schedule. It is vital to ensure employees are always available during business hours, if the industry requires it.