Most Workers Refuse to Unplug from the Office While on Vacation
Summer is when workers usually take time off from work. But employees taking vacation doesn't necessarily mean they are completely checking out.
According to a new Accountemps survey, 56 percent of workers won't unplug while on vacation this summer. That's up 15 points in two years.
Accountemps Metro Market Manager Dora Onyschak says many check in to make sure things are under control so when they come back they're not facing a mountain of work. Also, some may feel that checking in helps projects move forward.
Onyschak says workers worry about the stress factor on their colleagues.
"So if I don't check in, if I don't worry about that email or take care of that, how does that affect my peer?" she said.
The survey also finds employees plan to take an average of nine days off this summer, down from 10 days last year.
She says females are better at disconnecting while on vacation than males. About 52 percent of women don't check in to the office at all, compared to only one third of men.
About 70 percent of respondents ages 18-35 plan to keep some kind of contact with the office while on vacation compared to 39 percent of those age 55 and older.
"That might be because these younger workers are used to having technology at their hands all the time, whereas some older workers were working when we didn't have cell phones so they didn't have a choice but to unplug" said Onyschak.
Onyschak suggests scheduling your vacation as early as possible. Make a plan for your managers and peers so when you're on vacation you don't feel like you've left a mess behind.
Also, if you feel the need to check in, schedule office hours on vacation, says Onyschak. Only check your email when you first wake up and then again at the end of the day.
But managers can set the right examples for their employees. Onyschak says the first rule of thumb is if your boss never takes a vacation, then you shouldn't. But she adds managers should take time off to relax and recharge. She says they should ask employees to schedule vacations in advance and prep the other employees for that vacation.
In other words, they should plan to divide up the vacationing employee's work among more than one team member to minimize stress.
If multiple people are going to be taking the same vacation weeks, Onyschak says it may be a good idea for a manager to hire a temp to alleviate some of the load.