Employee benefits are on the 3Search agenda as we start to grow. The topic of this blog might cause cases of déjà vu due to all the debates on the subject started by Richard Branson in September. Having only recently launched 3Search, we are keen to garner opinion as to whether it’s a benefit people genuinely want or a gimmick. I actually first heard of the concept when a good friend, Sebastian Haire, implemented it at We Are Dylan (another recruitment firm) back in 2010. It seems to have been normalised since then and the boys at 3Search are keen to adopt it as we feel it fits in perfectly with the culture we’re trying to create.
Just to be clear on the concept – It permits all employees to take leave whenever they want for as long as they want, rather than working to a set amount of days off.
3 Reasons why it should work
1. I’ve always asked people to take responsibility for themselves and their work, but the implementation of this day to day has in fact been fairly limited. The hope would be that this practical example of autonomy would lead to people taking more responsibility for themselves in other areas of their day jobs.
2. The working environment is changing rapidly and 9-5 with an hour for lunch just isn’t relevant anymore. Our constant connectivity should be represented in the way we operate day to day.
3.Increased productivity? I believe so. Improved Morale? Yes. No more sitting around waiting for your boss to leave the office? Exactly.
A couple of potential problems
1. Do I think all businesses should do it? No. It takes a certain type of employee who has the necessary self-awareness to know when it is right to take time off and when it is not.
2. Is it open to abuse? Yes, but this comes down to the calibre of people you hire and the culture you build.
3. People might never take time off?! Knowing recruiters I think this is highly unlikely ;-) but just in case we will make sure people take a minimum of 20 days.
What’s next for 3Search benefits? Seeing as we drink about 10 diet cokes a day I think a soda gun is going to be a given. We aren’t quiet at the stage of freezing eggs yet but I’m very keen on a free weekly (and optional!) Mindfulness class but that conversation is for another day.