If being paid to take time off work, travel the world, and refresh and rejuvenate yourself every few years sounds like a dream, what you need is an employer with a great sabbatical policy. Sabbaticals, or career breaks, are increasingly common and popular employee benefits, and can vary in length, frequency and terms – with the best policies featuring regular opportunities for paid time off. Check out these options.
When you think about Adobe, you might think about their Photoshop and Acrobat tech products, but do you think about a career? With offices across the globe, and policies to encourage employee innovation and engagement, Adobe could be a good bet whether you’re a new graduate or further down your career journey. When it comes to sabbaticals, the Adobe policy allows for a career break every five years, starting with four weeks after five years rising to five weeks after ten years’ service, and then six weeks for every subsequent block of five years you work there. The time can also be linked to holidays or other sections of paid leave like maternity or parental leave, if you prefer. And yes, it is all fully paid!
2. Boston Consulting Group
BCG is rated at number two in the Fortune listing of top companies to work for, and also received a perfect score when assessed for diversity by the Human Rights Campaign. They offer careers across the globe as well as internships, and the sabbatical policy is progressive. For employees at partner level, paid career breaks of five weeks are available every five years to rejuvenate and refresh. Even before this, employees with at least a year’s service can take voluntary unpaid leave of up to eight weeks, during which time many benefits are protected, allowing all employees to benefit from time for themselves, alongside job security.
Deloitte offers consulting and professional services careers for people at all stages of life – from school leavers and grads to senior managers. The culture values inclusion and collaboration, resulting in high performance teams and a fun place to work. For sabbaticals, there are two different programs – an unpaid sabbatical of up to a month can be taken for any reason on a voluntary basis, and a longer three to six month sabbatical which can be taken to pursue professional development or volunteering opportunities, during which pay of 40% continues to be paid.
PwC employs people across 776 locations, covering the globe with 157 countries represented. On offer are accounting and consulting roles across a wide variety of sectors and companies. PwC was voted the fourth most attractive recruiter globally for graduate positions. For senior managers, four-week sabbaticals with full pay are offered – a ’gift of time’ which employees can use in any way they choose.
If you thought sabbaticals were only for college professors, then there’s good news. As our working lives change dramatically and include far more job changes and moves than previous generations, businesses are adding sabbatical perks to allow employees to balance their lives, and retain talent over the longer term. Pick your employer well, and they could end up paying you to kick back, relax, and travel the world!