Is your employee holiday “messed up”?

Employment Law, Holidays, HR Advice, HR Support, HR Stevenage, HR HertsHoliday – Ryanair cancelled 82 flights on Sunday after admitting it had “messed up” the planning of its pilots’ holiday.

The budget airline said on Saturday 16th September that it would cancel 40-50 flights every day for the next six weeks.

Marketing officer Kenny Jacobs said, “Affected customers with bookings up to 20 September had been informed.”

“We have messed up in the planning of pilot holidays and we’re working hard to fix that,” he said.

Matthew Pinto-Chilcott from Consensus HR comments “Over the weekend I was amazed to see the news in relation to Ryan air and the mess up it has made of its employees holidays resulting in the cancelling of 40 – 50 flights per day. Holidays are such an important part of an employee’s employment together with their salaries and need to be managed accordingly. In all industries business owners / managers need to ensure that they are continually keeping an eye on what holiday has been taken & what holiday still needs to be taken by its employees and would suggest that the teams managers / HR have this as a subject / KPI in key business meetings.

Most of the cancellations are due to a backlog of staff leave, which has seen large numbers of the airline’s staff book holidays towards the end of the year.

Martin Callanan, the aviation minister, said: “I am very concerned to see all of these reports of stranded Ryanair passengers. We expect all airlines to fulfil their obligations to their customers and do everything possible to notify them well in advance of any disruption to their journey.

“In the event of any disruption or cancellation, airlines must ensure customers are fully compensated and every effort is made to provide alternative travel arrangements.”

The airline is changing its holiday year, which currently runs from April to March, to run from January to December instead.

Complaints, HR Support, HR Advice, HR Herts, HR Beds, HR Stevenage, Holiday

Ryanair said the shift meant it had to allocate annual leave to pilots in September and October.

Passenger complaints

The cancellations could affect up to 285,000 passengers, who will be offered alternative flights or refunds.

Mr Jacobs said affected customers would have been sent an email.

“We advise customers to check the email address used to make their booking,” he added.

Matthew from Consensus comments “Wow! 285,000 customers affected & their plans ruined. Managing the team’s holidays is a relatively easy exercise if you have the right procedures in place whether this is a simple pen & paper exercise to a more sophisticated cloud based electronic method, which we can supply to our customers. Business Owners / Managers need to remember that employees request holiday and it is to be taken when it fits in best with the business as well as the employee. They also need to remember the law and the Working Time Directive which gives all full-time employees 20 days holiday + bank holidays (8). Business owners can also block out specific times of the year if needed and the team are informed appropriately.”

A page on the Ryanair website details flights cancelled up until 20 September. It says 56 flights are cancelled on Monday, 55 on Tuesday, and 53 on Wednesday.

Ryanair has said that less than 2% of its flights would be cancelled and the move would help it hit its annual punctuality target of 90%.

But passengers have complained about the resulting uncertainty.

If you are concerned about your holidays & the managing of them appropriately, contact us to discuss on 01462 621243 or by filling in our Internet ‘Contact’ form.

Consensus HR – ‘Helping Companies with their People Solutions’


Holiday are coming!, Holidays are coming!


As the well-known tune goes, although for different holidays (Christmas), employee’s holidays are soon to be coming in their droves due to the summer school holidays.

This is when the Policies & Procedures you have in place to manage employee holidays becomes extremely valuable.



The Law:

Everybody is entitled to a holiday, which is covered legally by the Working Time Directive, which stipulates that a full-time employee is entitled to 28 days holiday per annum pro-rata (Including Bank Holidays). This is accrued from day one of employment.

Failure to pay when either employed or once they have left employment is classed as ‘un-authorised deduction of wages’ and is an area that is common for former employees to take their employer to an Employment Tribunal. This can be done from day one of employment if somebody is owed monies regardless of length of service.

Policies & Procedures:

Companies should have a clear set policy for employees to use that states what the minimum notice is for applying for holiday and what needs to be completed for this to be accepted. An employee’s holiday is their legal right as explained prior but it should be noted that it is a request when they request their holiday and not a definite as business demands take precedence. However employers should also remember that it is in their business interests to ensure holiday as requested is granted, so as to ensure an employee uses their yearly entitlement up and also for the moral of the team.

A clear holiday form should be used that sets the standard clearly and should be granted on a first come, first served basis dependent on company needs with two copies of the form produced, one for the employee & one for the employer and their files. Both should be signed with the required authorisation to confirm it has been agreed.

Matthew from Consensus HR states “In my time within operations and HR, I have worked for quite a few businesses where the holiday procedure is not clear and has had to be amended due to people booking their holidays with the holiday company prior to having authorisation from their employer. Employees need to be aware that a booking for a holiday should not be made until their holiday at work has been authorised as if the holiday cannot be authorised they could lose out financially.

Our last blog titled ‘The Temperatures Are Rising!’ explains the legalities in relation to heat in the workplace.

If you wish to discuss your companies current Holiday Policy & how best to manage holiday requests going forward, contact us now by telephone – 01462 621243 or fill in our Contact Form.

Happy holidays!!

Take a Break!


Young family is playing arround on a sunny day.Wow! UK employees use just 77% of their annual leave each year to take a break. The Harris Poll survey also found that only half of workers use up all of their holiday entitlement. (Research commissioned by Glassdoor.)

Undoubtedly, technology had a big impact upon the nature of annual leave. More than two-fifths of employees admit to working while they are on leave.

‘Burn out’ is a very real risk affecting business as well as employees. These research snippets show how this is happening:

·       Younger employees, aged 16-24, are least likely to use all their annual leave. Just 12 per cent agreeing that they use their full holiday allowance

·       25% of 25-34 years olds also reported that it was difficult not to think about work while on leave, (the overall average was 20%).

·       18% reported that a colleague has contacted them about a work-related matter while they were away.

·       13% said that their boss contacted them about work during a break.

But why is this happening? Some interesting statistics emerged from the research:

  • 11% feel they have to work on holiday for fear of falling behind and facing a bigger workload upon their return
  • 10% staff said they worked while away from the office because they wanted a pay rise
  • 9% said they felt that no one else at their company could do their work

Joe Wiggins, senior jobs community manager at Glassdoor UK, said: “While there is always work to be done, employees should be conscious of using time off they’ve earned to recharge. In turn, employers should consider being more clear to everyone about what it means to be on holiday, actually let others be on leave, and go beyond just encouraging employees to use time off. Some real rest and relaxation will help employees return to work energised, ready to contribute and make them less susceptible to ‘burn out.”

Matthew Pinto-Chilcott of Consensus HR adds: “Business owners need to manage their teams’ holidays. It’s part of employers’ duty of care to ensure that everybody takes the holiday owed. This can also avoid two issues that are far larger problems than managing holidays: payment for accrued holidays when employees leave, plus employee ‘burn out’. Both have a detrimental affect upon the business and are easily avoided through proper procedures.”

contact_usIf you have any queries about holiday entitlement of managing employees’ annual leave, speak with Consensus HR. Contact Matthew via email or call 01462 621243, 0774 7789279.



Breaking News: Commission Element of Holiday Pay

Breaking News: Commission Element of Holiday Pay


Queries about holiday entitlement are amongst the most common questions that employers raise with us at Consensus HR.

The answer is… it varies, but it there is a set formula! The amount of holiday that an employee can take is calculated according to the days and the hours that he/she works.

If a person is working full-time, five days each week, his/her entitlement is 28 days a year including Bank Holidays (if your contract has been drafted to say so!).

A recent case involved Mr Lock and his employer, British Gas. In Lock v British Gas, Mr Lock argued that he is entitled to holiday pay that includes an element for the amount of commission he would normally receive when working.  Mr Lock won his case.

British Gas (the employer) argued that it amounted to “judicial vandalism” to follow the European Court of Justice (ECJ) jurisprudence and ignore the plain meaning of the Working Time Regulations.

Mr Lock was paid basic salary and results-based commission but only basic pay during leave. An employment tribunal (ET) held that results-based commission must be included when calculating holiday pay and that it was possible to read words into the Working Time Regulations. British Gas appealed but was dismissed by the Employment Appeals Tribunal (EAT)

Are you unsure of what holiday pay your employees are entitled to?

Would you like to ensure you are following and are always up to date with current employment legislation?

contact_usContact Consensus HR. We’re here to help.