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Annual Leave

Hi,

I'm in the process of negotiating terms for a new job.  Annual leave (=paid holidays not counting public holidays) is of course a component and I was wondering what peoples thoughts on this were. 

3 weeks/year is the legal minimum here (I'm not in the USA) although I've had 4 weeks for almost as long as I can remember.  My feeling is that 4 weeks is a little on the light side as I either find myself taking unpaid leave or taking a decent sized holiday in between changing jobs.  I think that doing this has allowed me to stay fresh and enthusiastic about this industry even though I'm close to 'old-timer' status at the ripe old age of 38 :-)

Its a senior technical role - I'd be interested in what sort of annual leave allowance others in senior technical roles have.

btw, I see that Joel thinks 6 weeks is a nice idea but hasn't necessarily implemented it yet:
http://www.joelonsoftware.com/articles/fog0000000038.html

cheers,
Peter M

Peter M
Monday, August 16, 2004

In my country we have 5 weeks minimum. I have 6 weeks even though I am very junior. Right now it is autumn blues here, the summer is too short...

Privileged who wants more
Monday, August 16, 2004

i went from 4 down to 3. However, where I work now there isn't a lot of unpaid overtime, whereas there was before. Also, at my new (3 mos) old job, I can earn extra time - which i plan on doing this fall.

Patrick
Monday, August 16, 2004

Next time I move jobs (which probably won't be for a while) I intend to look for a minimum of six weeks + bank holidays.

4 weeks really isn't much. 3 weeks is too little.

Mr Jack
Monday, August 16, 2004

Suggest you get  "as many sick days as you need, as long as it does not effect performance."

This makes whatever you have (3 or 4 weeks) strech father, as your sick time isn't a parasite against vacation . :-)

www.xndev.com (Matt H.)
Monday, August 16, 2004

Wow! Isn't that a given?

Mr Jack
Monday, August 16, 2004

wow, must be nice.  Here in the USA, you're lucky to get 2 weeks a year.

devinmoore.com
Monday, August 16, 2004

>My feeling is that 4 weeks is a little on the light side

I get five days a year and I have no complaints!

Bill Rushmore
Monday, August 16, 2004

I'm with Devinmoore - Though I haven't been with my current company for long, I'm only getting 2 weeks of vacation annually, with a Sr. dev position - and I was happy to get that.  'Course, the last time I took more than a long weekend off was over two years ago, when I got married.

Greg Hurlman
Monday, August 16, 2004

Here in the US, 2 weeks is the norm, and you generally have to fight for much more.  That said, I've had nearly 4 weeks (more than 4 with sick time) since I started this job 6 months ago as a Sr. Dev, which I don't consider too shabby, though of course more would be nice.  Everybody in the US seems to think that if you don't live your job and work yourself to death you must be lazy, contrary to the "lazy American" image that really only applies to a subset of the population (don't they all?).

muppet
Monday, August 16, 2004

Things are much more luxurious here in the UK.

Quite often you'll get 25 days, plus bank holidays, with more thrown in for long service (e.g. one extra holiday day per year of service).

A lot of firms will "buy" the holiday off you, i.e. you agree to work on your holiday days and you get paid extra (pro-rated).

In the old days, you used to be able to "carry over" your holiday entitlement to the next year. However, firms got a bit wary of this when people started banking so much holiday (by being workaholics), that they were able to book ten week blocks as holiday. Now you can't get away with this any more, although sometimes you can carry forward a few extra days.

Nemesis
Monday, August 16, 2004

There is a legal minimum of 4 weeks per year in the UK. This even applies to temp workers.

Mr Jack
Monday, August 16, 2004

I'm moving to the UK.

muppet
Monday, August 16, 2004

Britian has:

a) Good vacation packages.

b) Excellent Beer.

c) Wallace & Gromit.

d) The best music.

I should have been English!!!

Genx'er
Monday, August 16, 2004

pronounced "Eng-guh-lish"

muppet
Monday, August 16, 2004

Not only is there only two weeks vacation (well in most cases now its PTO [paid time off] which is vacation and sick time), but if you get called to jury duty and get on a long case, you could eat up all your time.

NoPto4u
Monday, August 16, 2004

So does jury duty count as holiday, then?

What if you've got no holiday left? Can you get out of it that way? Does this not skew the distribution of jurors?

Tom
Monday, August 16, 2004

No, jury duty is unpaid leave for which the company can not fire you (its against the law). You are paid $10 a day for jury duty.

Most companies (in my experience) continue to pay you through out jury duty, though they have the option of not if they don't want to. But they have to let you continue your job afterwards.

Steven C.
Tuesday, August 17, 2004

In New York City Jury Duty is $55 a day.

www.MarkTAW.com
Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Actually, Britain has the worst annual leave packages in Europe. And Germany and Belgium arguably have better beer.

Mr Jack
Tuesday, August 17, 2004

In France it's a least 5 weeks vacation + the famous "JRTT"  which makes about 7 weeks total in average.
Beer is not great but there are excellent wines ;-)

Blues
Tuesday, August 17, 2004

And you don't pay £2.50 (ish) a bottle in duty in France.

Mr Jack
Tuesday, August 17, 2004

How sad is it that companies are forced by the police power of the state to give someone 4 weeks of vacation.

And you wonder why work is sent elsewhere.

Does the gov't tell you when and where you can take (leave) a dump?  geeezzz

Yo
Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Yeah it's terrible when the government looks out for the welfare and happiness of its citizens like that.  Thank God that the USA is the best nation in the world!!

muppet
Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Here in Silicon Valley every day off is given grudgingly.

I was more or less called "not a team player" for taking a y a Friday (plus a two day weekend) to attend my sister's wedding. This had been scheduled SIX MONTHS in advance.

frustrated
Wednesday, August 18, 2004

"How sad is it that companies are forced by the police power of the state to give someone 4 weeks of vacation."

Yes, it is sad - it's sad that some companies are so parasitic that they need to be legislated so.

Work going to america, huh? Really.... so is it the US, or the UK, that has had the higher growth in the last five years?

Mr Jack
Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Where I am legislation also gives us 15 days / three weeks of annual leave.

I was quite used to 4 weeks, but 3 years ago joined a company that only gave the legal minimum.

About a year ago I resigned, joined another company and now have 4.5 weeks leave.

I would definitely say that more leave equals better work. I feel better giving my all, as I do not feel that I'm working for people that just want to shaft me. Oh and you are better rested, causing you to concentrate better and bla bla you know where I am going.

In other words, do try to get as much leave as possible through your negotiations.

Brick
Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Thanks for all the comments.

I took the job and will have 4 weeks .... but I'll be angling for 5 when it comes to get a rise!

cheers,
Peter

Peter M
Wednesday, August 18, 2004

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