Annual Leave, Bank Holidays, Outsourced HR

Bank Holidays and Annual Leave: Navigating the Maze for Your Business

Bank holidays

The Mystery of the Missing Mondays: Why Do We Have Bank Holidays?

Have you ever woken up on a Monday morning, dreading the workday ahead, only to realise it’s a bank holiday? Ah, the sweet relief! But what exactly are bank holidays, and how do they tie into your employees’ annual leave? Let’s dive in.

The What: Unravelling the Concept of Bank Holidays

Bank holidays, often called public holidays, are days when banks and many other businesses are closed for the day. Originating in the UK, these holidays have been a part of our culture for centuries. They’re not just random days off; they often commemorate significant events, traditions, or historical figures.

Story Time: Sarah’s Annual Leave Dilemma

Sarah, a manager at a bustling tech startup, was planning her holiday. She wanted to take a week off in May but remembered the May bank holiday. Would that day count as part of her annual leave? She was unsure but discovered that her company’s policy was to count bank holidays as separate from annual leave. So she could enjoy an extra day off without eating into her holiday balance!

The How: Bank Holidays and Their Impact on Annual Leave

For many businesses, bank holidays do not count towards an employee’s annual leave. This means that if an employee takes a week off and there’s a bank holiday within that week, they only use up four days of their holiday instead of five. However, this isn’t a hard and fast rule. Some companies include bank holidays within the holiday quota. It’s essential to clarify this in the employment contract to avoid confusion.

FAQ: Common Queries About Bank Holidays and Annual Leave

Q: Do part-time employees get the same bank holidays as full-time employees?

A: Typically, part-time employees receive a pro-rata amount of bank holidays based on their working hours.

Q: Can an employer require an employee to work on a bank holiday?

A: Yes, Specifying this in the employment contract is crucial.  But many businesses view bank holidays as a normal working day.  Unless your employment contract specifies this, there is no automatic right to a day off on a bank holiday.

The Where: A Quick List of UK Bank Holidays

  • New Year’s Day
  • Good Friday
  • Easter Monday
  • Early May Bank Holiday
  • Spring Bank Holiday
  • Summer Bank Holiday
  • Christmas Day
  • Boxing Day

Remember, Scotland and Northern Ireland have additional bank holidays, so always check local listings!  In recent years, we have had additional bank holidays too.

Why It Matters: The Importance of Understanding Bank Holidays and Annual Leave

Understanding the relationship between bank holidays and annual leave is crucial for both employers and employees. For businesses, it helps in planning and ensuring that there’s no shortage of staff on crucial days. For employees, it aids in maximising their time off and planning holidays effectively.

How Do You Handle Bank Holidays?

We’re curious! How does your business manage bank holidays and annual leave? Do you count them separately or together? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

Need a Helping Hand?

Navigating the intricacies of bank holidays and holidays can be challenging. If you need assistance understanding or implementing your business’s best practices, connect with us. We’re here to help!