No, it’s not a euphemism for bludging; unlimited annual leave is real, and it exists in Australia, and in the travel industry.
Youth travel firm Student Flights has announced it will offer its staff unlimited annual leave, as it brings its Never Stop Travelling mantra to the agents themselves.
Adopted to create a more attractive and efficient workplace (surely the former, but possibly not the latter?), the initiative will be rolled out Australia-wide, and may even extend to parent company Flight Centre.
Student Flights general manager Sean Martin said the experiment (as we’ve labeled it) was created to reward staff, attract high quality candidates and improve productivity. But there’s something in it for their customers too, of course.
“This program enables our staff to never stop travelling, to enhance their passion and product knowledge which can then be passed on to the customer so they have all the information needed for the best holiday possible,” said Mr Martin, whose business employs some 400 people across Australia.
“It is also about encouraging work-life balance while giving our consultants ownership and responsibility and developing a high-trust relationship with staff.
“A Student Flights travel consultant could, for example, take off from Perth to Bali for a long weekend every week or spend six weeks trekking through South East Asia or South America, before returning to work to pass on the benefits of his or her recent travel experiences.
“The consultant could then do it all over again later in the year or try something new like backpacking through Europe for a month or two.”
The only catch is that employees will need to meet the agreed commission average over the prior six months to qualify for the leave, which would see all annual leave wiped back to zero at the end of each year with the company.
“Staff can take as much annual leave as they like as long as it fits in with the business’s requirements,” Mr Martin said.
“We encourage our team to get out and see as much of the world as they can so they can enrich their own lives and give customers the lowdown on what it’s really like out there.”