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Enhanced Furlough Leave

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We are considering whether offering employees an "enhanced" holiday pay during Furlough was possible. Holiday during Furlough does not look an attractive proposition to most employees as exchanging your holiday for a 20% top up (to 100% pay) uses a lot of days holiday for only a small / limited gain. I was thinking of offering a holiday swap as an alternative. I am mulling over offering employees the choice of taking 10 days holiday during Furlough Leave and in exchange paying them 100% of their salary for the month. Was wondering what your thoughts were on this please, am I breaking every rule under the sun by trying to be nice to employees, are there some showstoppers that I haven't taken into consideration etc? Thank you.

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By paul.benny
22nd May 2020 16:11

If I can rephrase the offer to your employees
- you're getting 3+ months of involuntary "holiday" but at 80% of pay
- if you waive 10 days' voluntary holiday, I'll pay you 20% of a month (ie 4 days)

That might actually be a fair bargain in that it puts money in workers' pockets. But they have a statutory holiday entitlement and AFAIK that can't be waived. Alternatively if you require employees to take holiday at certain times (as is allowed), and you make them take holiday now instead of being furloughed, you can't claim the JRS.

I think you're probably more at risk from a grievance over not giving statutory holiday. If you have a small workforce and good relationships, you might just want to take a chance on it.

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Replying to paul.benny:
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By kestrepo
22nd May 2020 19:22

Thanks for the response. By paraphrasing my question you have put it much more succinctly. I think I am going to go for it and offer this out and see if anyone wants to take up the offer. I might tweak the ratio to be more favourable to employees but am trying to turn a very difficult situation into a win win scenario. We don't have a lot of spare funds but want to try and find a way to do right if we can.

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Replying to paul.benny:
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By garystirling
22nd May 2020 21:01

You can take holidays whilst being on furlough as long as paid at 100%, you can still claim the JRS for the 80%. You can also make employees take holidays aslong as you give them double the notice of the period you want them to take.

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Replying to paul.benny:
By Duggimon
28th May 2020 09:56

paul.benny wrote:

if you require employees to take holiday at certain times (as is allowed), and you make them take holiday now instead of being furloughed, you can't claim the JRS.

I don't think that's true, I think so long as they follow the rules for doing so, employers can require employees to take holidays, pay them the 100% they're entitled to and carry on claiming under the CJRS with no interruption.

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