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Summer Slowdown is still a reality say finance leaders

Working in heatThe summer slowdown is still alive and well in the UK. Yet while the summer break is advantageous and can bring heightened motivation and morale for employees, the majority (87%) of finance leaders say it has a negative impact on their business, finds new research from leading recruitment specialist Robert Half UK. Thirteen per cent of finance leaders said that the summer slowdown would not have any negative impact on their business.

The biggest impact is caused by annual leave (48%), with senior leaders attributing it to ‘less managerial direction’ for the team, with multiple senior leaders away from the office on holiday (35%) and lost productivity (13%). While a quarter (25%) say that commercial activity will slow down, a further 14% say that their workforce is less motivated during the summer months.

Phil Sheridan, UK Managing Director of Robert Half, commented: “Although it can feel that business never stops, the summer months bring a great opportunity for UK workers to take a break, unwind and recharge their batteries. In the long run, businesses and employees benefit greatly from making the most of the summer slowdown as individuals who take regular breaks are known to be more motivated, have higher morale and are more productive on their return to work.

“Although it is clear that the majority of companies across the UK are impacted by the seasonal slowdown, with some advance planning the negative affect to businesses of employees taking their summer breaks can be alleviated. Many businesses looking to maintain productivity levels over the summer months are turning to temporary and interim professionals to help manage workloads and keep critical projects on track.”

Robert Half offers five recommendations for companies to ensure their teams can enjoy stress-free holidays:

  • Set up a team planning day: this means tasks can be divided between the team when employees are on holiday. It enables every employee to know his or her responsibilities and schedule them in advance.
  • Be prepared: it is important to clarify expectations and deadlines. Clear agreements with respect to all tasks are needed to better manage the additional workload.
  • Provide support: by relying on temporary and interim workers during the summer months organisations can meet deadlines for the most urgent projects and daily tasks, but also ensure that permanent employees are not overloaded.
  • Allow some flexibility: employees who are given additional flexibility in the period just before their holiday will be more inclined to make additional efforts to complete their tasks on time.
  • Encourage employees to take all their entitled holidays: every team member has the right to a minimum number of holidays and it is important to encourage employees to take them. Employees who take all of their holidays are generally more satisfied with their jobs and are more productive throughout the year.

Full press release on www.roberthalf.co.uk

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