Paid Time Offs

Paid Time Off, PTO (Annual Leave) is how many days you could have holidays and still get paid. Usually there is a legal minimum of PTO in different counries. This does not include the public/bank holidays.

  • Japan is 10 days for working >= 6 months.
  • Taiwan is 7 days for >= 1 year.1
  • US is 14 days for < 1 year
  • The full list you can take a look at here

But these are bare minimum, you should be able to find better offerings from good companies. Usually a company says 4 weeks of PTO means 20 days, not 28 days.

PTO and others

PTO should not include public holidays. PTO, care giver leaves, sick leaves and parental leave should be implemented separately.

How PTO will work

Leadership/managers needs to take them. People should be able to take half day, 1 day, 1 week, or 2 weeks. Set expectations that people need to take vacations organization-wide.

You should not ask for permission but need to communicate people that you are taking some time off, so things can be arranged. 2 weeks notice for a week of vacation is reasonable.

Unused PTOs

A good employer:

  • Carry over to next year
  • Paid out after an employee left

Unlimited PTOs

This seems good but maybe not a very good idea. Most of people end up not taking it at all (guilty). For many work places, this is "No vacation". Also it is always subject to approval. Then the pressure back to you and with your manager.

There are likely restrictions on how much you can take in one go. So Unlimited is not really unlimited. Otherwise why we still working? There do has a limit.

The unlimited means unspecified. Some countries need to set how much worth is a vacation as employer liquidity. So when you leave a company, that could turn into cash. Unspecified means you are not getting the money with your unused leave. Employer has one less giant expense to pay you when you leave.

That’s probably why Minimum PTO is a good idea.

Minimum PTOs

4 weeks per year (1 week per quarter) is most common. 5 weeks is generous. 6 week is extra caring.

Conclusion

Minium is better than Unlimited.

I think a 30 days PTO (exclude other leaves) is pretty generous and a good amount of days.

This happens to be how Buildkite is doing it.

Related