Employees at Accenture, aconsulting company, can take three months off—for any reason—and their jobs will be waiting for them when they return.
As part of the company’s Future Leave program, which grants unpaid leave of up to three months with continued benefits, supervisors don’t even ask why the employee wants to take the time off.
Most often, says HR Director Dave Paulsen, employees want to do community service, travel or spend time with family. Some simply feel they need some time off because they work so hard.
Since the program started in March, about 60 employees have taken the mini-sabbaticals.
Employees who have worked for Accenture for three continuous years are eligible for Future Leave, and they can take it once every three years.
Although the firm has to pay to continue the absent employees’ benefits and hold their positions open, Paulsen says he doesn’t consider it a high-cost program. In return, he says, Future Leave helps attract good employees and increases retention.
Contact: David Paulsen at email@example.com.