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What’s Your PTO Policy?

I’m sure you’ve heard of the phrase ‘all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy’, well – it makes Jacky a dull girl, too! And in our industry, that simply won’t do. In a recent survey by Net Time Solutions, it was found that 38% of employees’ productivity levels were directly affected by the PTO policies of their employer. The salon and spa industry has such a hybrid approach to employment – independent contractors to salary employees – it’s no wonder there is a range of policies regarding PTO. However, in a business where time is quite literally money, how do you keep your salon’s humming while keeping pace with the changing expectations of the labor force?

More and more companies are changing the way that they work and offering employees more flexibility when it comes to paid time off. Tech companies such as Netflix and Google are really leading the pack in this regard, with their new ‘unlimited PTO’ benefit for employees. Did you know that Netflix employees are now entitled to unlimited parental leave? And that applies to all new parents, not just Moms.

PTO isn’t just a compassionate gesture – the statistics show that it makes business sense, too; a recent IWPR study published statistics that show 89% of businesses who implemented PTO noticed a positive effect on work-place productivity. This is bolstered by a similar study conducted by the White House that countered the usual claim that PTO leads to an increase in frivolous claims by stating that; “evidence suggests that workers do not abuse paid sick days. A survey of 251 employers conducted after Connecticut implemented a paid sick leave program found that employees did not abuse the policy by taking unnecessary sick days.”

Even companies that utilize contractors are getting on the PTO bandwagon. Microsoft did so earlier this year by insisting that all of its vendors offer 15 days of paid leave to contractors. Why? Because businesses are now seeing the value in having happy and relaxed employees who are motivated to work harder as a result.

Although it may seem counter-intuitive at first, the salon industry is actually poised to easily implement PTO. Why? Because double shifting stations is an easy solution to keep your chairs full, but your team members balanced. By leading the way in advocating employee health and well-being worldwide, you could also lead the way in creating a more loyal and dedicated workforce right at home in your salon. The benefits are there to see, and the statistics lean heavily towards the benefits PTO can give you. In a recent White House survey of two hundred human resource managers, 66% cited family-supportive policies, including flexible schedules, as the single most important factor in attracting and retaining female talent in the workplace. So, in an industry that’s predominantly female, this concept has a greater impact in our businesses than in any other.

There’s also real benefits on a ROI level. When you spend a lot of time and money training and conditioning your staff, a PTO system lets you maximize that investment. How? Isn’t that counter-intuitive? No. An IWPR report found that up to 44% businesses had discovered that it was more costly to the firm to undergo a search for a replacement and to invest time and money training that replacement than it would be to temporarily arrange for coverage of the workers’ duties while they are on paid leave.

The studies have shown it; invest in your staff and they’ll invest in you. How do you treat PTO at your company? Share your tips below!

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