Microsoft to give employees unlimited vacation days

This flexible vacation policy is part of a series of changes Microsoft has made in response to the COVID-19 pandemic

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Microsoft has announced a new policy called ‘Discretionary Time Off’ which will no longer require US employees to formally record vacation, as reported in The Verge. The policy change was announced in an email to employees by Microsoft’s chief people officer, Kathleen Hogan.

Many workplaces are becoming more flexible with time-off policies, such as offering more vacation days and providing childcare leaves to male employees. Following this trend, Microsoft also aims to modernize the company’s vacation policy to a more flexible model.

Under the new policy, starting January 6, in addition to unlimited vacation days, Microsoft employees will also be entitled to 10 corporate holidays, leaves of absence, sick and mental health time off, and time away for jury duty or bereavement. Additionally, the tech giant will also compensate for any unused vacation with a final payout to employees in April.

The new policy will also allow new employees to take vacations immediately.

This policy will not apply to Microsoft’s hourly workers or those located outside of the US due to different laws and regulations. The company stated that offering unlimited time off to hourly workers can be complicated due to federal and state wage and hour laws, and laws vary by country for employees located outside the US.

Reportedly, in 2021, Microsoft announced a $1,500 bonus for both US-based and international employees. Regarding its work from home policy, the company stated that it does not plan for all employees to work remotely permanently. They believe that there is value in having employees work together in the office. This aligns with the approach of other companies who believe that a one-size-fits-all policy does not apply to all roles.

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