More workers take time off in 2021

3 in 4 logging off over holiday season; fewer hours needed to prepare for and return from vacation

More workers take time off in 2021

This holiday season, 75 per cent of Canadians are planning to take time off — up by 14 per cent from 2020.

This is the case even though travel may be off the table, according to an ADP Canada survey.

“Taking time off is about more than getting away,” says Heather Haslam, vice-president of marketing at ADP. “When employees take the time to relax and distance themselves from work, they come back feeling refreshed and recharged, which can directly translate to their productivity and quality of work. Employers need to make sure everyone takes the time to press pause and disconnect – especially those who start to show signs of fatigue.”

Employees that don’t take vacations often suffer from burnout, according to another expert.

Overall, more workers (27 per cent) have taken time off in 2021 compared to 2020 (20 per cent), finds the survey of 1,520 adults in November.

Canadians also say they are investing an average of 21 hours as a “time-off tax”, or hours of extra work to prepare for and return from vacation – 13 hours less than the time reported for 2020.

That compares to 33 hours in 2019, 23 hours in 2018 and 11 hours in 2017.

“The uncertainty around the pandemic, coupled with the blurring of work and home life, left many employees in a situation where they were not taking vacation time last year,” says Aslam. “We’re finally starting to see Canadian workers eager to take time off, which not only helps achieve a better work-life balance but significantly contributes to preventing burnout.”

However, many people just can’t stop working, even when they should be taking a break, according to a separate survey.

And 51 per cent of Canadian workers say they have been subjected to “vacation shaming” at work, which happens when managers or colleagues employ guilt or negative pressure that discourages them from taking their full allotment of time off.

Employees can take a lot of good things from vacationing, according to AllinaHealth, including:

  • improved physical health
  • improved mental health
  • greater well-being
  • increased mental motivation
  • decreased burnout
  • boosted happiness

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