Where You Live May Influence Whether You Take Vacation Time

Odds are, your employees failed to use all their paid vacation time last year. They’re not the exception – especially if they live in Idaho.

Seventy-eight percent of Gem State workers left vacation time unused in 2016. Concerned about job security, they missed the chance to enjoy the free time they earned and to recharge their motivation at work. While Idaho topped the state list of squandered vacation time, far outpacing the astounding national average of 54 percent, New Hampshire wasn’t far behind with 77 percent. In 36 states, at least half of all employees failed to make full use of their paid vacation time.

TicketsatWork partners with businesses in every U.S. state, so we care how corporate human resource departments use geographic trends to keep employees motivated, dedicated, happy and healthy. That’s why we joined the Project: Time Off coalition, a nationwide initiative to raise awareness of the benefits of personal time for employees.

Recently, we showed you how today’s employees are digitally tethered to their companies. We’ll now share a 2017 study by market-research expert GfK that breaks down American worker vacation behaviors by state and major city. It reveals that workplace culture is greatly affected by geographical expectations. Where you reside very much influences your comfort level in your job and your overall satisfaction.

Under-Vacationed America

Want to live in a state where fewer workers fear taking a vacation would negatively impact their prospects for a raise or promotion? Move to Maine. Workers in the Pine Tree State report better vacation cultures at their companies. In fact, 54 percent of employees there say their company encourages time off, compared to 33 percent nationally who say the same.

And while government workers are sometimes maligned for their work ethic, this group helped Washington, D.C., top the list of major cities whose employees left vacation time unused. With 63 percent of government employees foregoing paid vacations, it’s the second-worst industry at using time off, just after education (65%). Pittsburgh, at 40 percent, also deserves some recognition – but as the No. 1 big city for recognizing work-life balance. Where does your big city rank?

As National Plan for Vacation Day on January 30 approaches, we want to help human resource professionals foster a positive workplace culture and optimize their company’s most critical asset: people. This often requires making a commitment to helping managers and employees alike recognize the benefits of overcoming outdated beliefs and practices.

Take a look at the complete study to understand how your HR department can stand out in your neighborhood. Expand your company’s horizons.

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