The Nation's Most Vacation-Deprived Employees

Jan 30 2014, 9:36pm CST | by

You might not expect Florida to be home to the workers who take the least paid time off, but a recent survey by TriNet, a provider of cloud-based HR services, found that those in the North Point, Sarasota and Bradenton, Fla. areas use the smallest amount of PTO, which combines vacation and sick days.

Overworked folks in that metro area take just 2.9 days of paid time off annually. They’re followed by:

Phoenix, Mesa and Scottsdale, Ariz. (3.6 days)

New York, Newark and Jersey City, NJ (4.5 days)

Atlanta, Sandy Springs and Rosewell, Ga. (5.4 days)

Miami, Ft. Lauderdale and West Palm Beach, Fla. (5.7 days).

TriNet surveyed more than 8,000 of its customers and more than 218,000 workers for the survey. What’s important to know is that TriNet serves small and midsized private employers that typically have 100 employees or less, so the survey did not include workers in big corporations or government.

Who takes the most time off? Here are the folks who get the most time away from the office.

Sacramento, Roseville, and Arden-Arcade, Calif.    (13.9)

Washington, D.C., Arlington, Va. and Alexandria, Va.   (12.0)

Charlotte, Concord and Gastonia, N.C.   (11.1)

San Diego and Carlsbad, Calif.  (10.9)

Denver and Boulder, Colo.  (10.6)

So what explains the differences? “Industry can play a part,” says Jason Langhoff, director of corporate development at TriNet. “Certainly the financial services folks in New York tend to take less vacation overall. In New York, he notes, “Basically one out of every three people takes any vacation. Two out of three are working every day of the year, except official holidays.” The vacation takers fare pretty well, though. They average 12 days off annually.

In other cities, where industries like construction and tourism are important, it may be hard for workers to take time off, he says.

Demographics matter, too. “We find that younger employees tend not to take as much vacation as their more experienced co workers,” he says. Areas with more younger workers will tend to have a lower average when it comes to taking paid time off, he notes.

While business owners might seem to be the beneficiaries of employees who don’t take their paid time off, it actually behooves them to encourage their employees to take the time–and not just because it leaves employees more rested and energetic, says Langhoff.

If a company is located in a state where the unused vacation time must be paid out–and isn’t “zeroed out” at the end of each year–the money owed can eventually become a big liability on the firm’s books, he explains. One way companies can prevent this is by establishing a cap on how much vacation can be accrued.

Employers generally can’t get away with not paying employees for their accumulated paid time off once they leave the company, he adds. “If the employer does not pay them, the state will go after the employer with a wage claim,” he says.

Source: Forbes Business


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