Everything HR Needs to Know About Sabbaticals

Scroll down to read more!

Everything HR Needs to Know About Sabbaticals

Scroll down to read more!

Table of Contents

Everything HR Needs to Know About Sabbaticals

Employees taking sabbaticals? You heard me correctly—sabbaticals are becoming increasingly more common in the non-academic world, especially in the private sector. A 2018 study by the Society for Human Resource Management shows that about 15% of employers were offering sabbaticals to their employees.

What is a sabbatical?

Originally, sabbaticals were a way to give professors a break to pursue research or just take time away from teaching. Now, it’s evolved to be essentially just a longer, more extended break from work, for an employee to rest, research, write, develop new professional skills, explore passions, education, or for any other reason they like. 

How long does a sabbatical last?

There are no legal requirements for a sabbatical, so the requirements are up to the company. Sabbaticals can be as short as a few weeks to as long as five years.

Are sabbaticals paid?

Sabbaticals can be paid or unpaid—it’s all up to the company’s policies. However, it’s generally a good idea to offer paid sabbaticals. The whole point is to rest and take a break for the employee to focus on themselves. They can’t do that if they have to find a side gig or worry about money. Offering paid sabbaticals is a great way to build trust between the company and employees.

How is a sabbatical different from a vacation or other types of time off?

Because a sabbatical is often longer than a vacation, it’s important for companies to treat it differently–a company will most likely have to train a replacement or somehow cover the duties of the employee on a sabbatical.

Usually, the purpose of a sabbatical is different than a vacation–sabbaticals are usually used for professional development, while vacations are usually used for stereotypical rest, relaxation, and travel.

A sabbatical is also different than unlimited paid time off (PTO) in that it’s acceptable for an employee to take paid leave for an extended period of time for a sabbatical, whereas with unlimited PTO, employees may face anxiety taking a large period of time off due to fears they’ll be terminated or reprimanded for using so much unlimited PTO.

 

If you want to learn more about the different types of paid and unpaid time off, you can check out this post: 12 Types of Paid and Unpaid Leave and Time Off | Workology 

 

Examples of sabbaticals in non-academic companies

Facebook offers their employees sabbaticals. Their policy, called Recharge, allows eligible employees to take 30 days of paid time off every five years.

Patagonia has a semi-sabbatical policy. They allow their employees to take two months away from work to work for an environmental group of their choice while being paid.

McDonald’s has a sabbatical program where eligible employees can take an eight-week paid sabbatical every ten years.

Sample Policy

Eligible employees can go on paid sabbatical leave to seek out professional development, research, or other creative interests.

Sabbaticals can last up to five consecutive months, and can only be taken every five years. Employees will be paid their full salary during this time, with pay being disbursed at the usual biweekly pay dates.

Employees are eligible for sabbatical leave if they have worked at the company for at least five years as full-time employees.

Did you like this post? Share it!

One Comment

Comments are closed.

A Word From Our Sponsors

Ads help make Workology resources free for everyone. We respect your privacy. To see our Privacy Policy click here.

Recommended Posts

Sanjay Sathé, Founder & CEO of SucceedSmart, is no stranger to disrupting established industries.

Q&A With Sanjay Sathé, Founder & CEO of SucceedSmart

This interview is part of a series on Workology that features an HR Technology company, its founder and its features. For this post, we’re...

supporting caregivers: the sandwich generation at work

Supporting Caregivers: The ‘Sandwich Generation’ at Work

I’ve been told my whole life to enjoy being young and to grow old gracefully. To enjoy and soak in every moment, especially the...

Recruiting Reimagined: How Specialized Software Strengthens Hiring in 2024

Explore how specialized software is transforming recruitment strategies in 2024. We discuss the benefits of innovative tools for hiring....

How to Reduce Stress at Work (and Life) with Meditation

We can’t always limit stress or the amount of it in our lives, but we can arm ourselves with resources and tools to help...
Best HR Certification prep books

Best HR Certification Prep Books for SHRM and HRCI

Looking for additional reading to support your study prep for HRCI or SHRM? We've got a comprehensive list for you right here....
Your Global HR Certification: A Professional's Guide

Your Global HR Certification: A Professional’s Guide

Elevate your HR career with our guide to Global HR Certification. Explore benefits, prep tips, and vital resources for exam success!...

Resources for Session Attendees of Digitizing Talent

Resources for conference session attendees of Digitizing Talent: Creative Strategies for the Digital Recruiting Age....

Ways to Set up Self-Paced Studies in Higher Education

In the world of higher education, the winds of change are blowing. More than ever, students are looking for learning options that fit their...

Checkout Our Products

Ads help make Workology resources free for everyone. We respect your privacy. To see our Privacy Policy click here.

More From Workology

HR Certification Podcast Episode 9: 2024 Changes to HRCI and SHRM Exams

In this episode of the HR Certification Podcast, we are reviewing the latest changes in SHRM and HRCI exams.

Ways to Set up Self-Paced Studies in Higher Education

Click on read more to open this post on our blog.

Resources for Session Attendees of Digitizing Talent

Resources for conference session attendees of Digitizing Talent: Creative Strategies for the Digital Recruiting Age.
Your Global HR Certification: A Professional's Guide

Your Global HR Certification: A Professional’s Guide

Elevate your HR career with our guide to Global HR Certification. Explore benefits, prep tips, and vital resources for exam success!