Ideas on how to boost employee happiness and retention this summer

It’s official: the clocks have gone forward and we can all start daydreaming about BBQs, sunny beaches and outdoor pub dining. For HR professionals, it’s also time to start planning summer policies and events ranging from flexitime hours to team building activities outside.


Please read on for a quick round-up of ideas likely to feature on HR agendas over the coming weeks and beyond.


– Flexible work schedules

Consider enabling your employees to shift their working day an hour forwards or backwards, depending on when they’d more appreciate the longer daylight hours. Introduce early Fridays so everyone can leave at 2 pm to enjoy a long weekend. Your colleagues will return even more refreshed and motivated come Monday morning.


– Summertime events

Think BBQs, picnics, beach trips and games of rounders in your nearest green space. Leave work talk in the office but don’t even think of forgetting the light refreshments and Pimms.


Summerised work environments

Organise for a salad bar or ice cream truck to swing by the office at lunchtime. If you have outdoor space, put up some hammocks or make picnic blankets available so employees can zone out for half an hour at lunch. Dot your green space with deck chairs for sunny brainstorming sessions. Or take a leaf from Boris’s book and get a partygate suitcase of beer for a good old fashioned after-work knees-up in the sun.


– PTO policy review

Requests for Personal Time Off (PTO) rocket in the summer. Ensure your process and time frame are clear and communicate them to all employees to avoid disappointment. If you have to deny a request, consider sugar-coating it with an additional day off to be taken later in the year.


– Hit Record!

Take pictures and video clips of your fun summertime activities and benefits to use in HR materials. You can go a step further by interviewing your employees about these benefits (and your company) in situ. They are, after all, the best ambassadors for your company and your strongest recruitment tool.


– Be clear on the dress code

While employees in companies with strict dress codes feel obliged to soldier on in stifling formal wear, those in more casual environments may take their flesh-baring choices too far. A summertime dress code is never de trop so be sure to issue yours before the bikini brigade rock up in your boardroom. Awkward!


Whichever of the above ideas your organisation embraces this summer to boost employee happiness and retention, enjoy the results! If you’d like any support on the recruitment side of things, please get in touch. ABL, your trusted recruitment partner, will be delighted to help!