Goldman Sachs staff get unlimited holidays: Senior bankers are allowed as many days off as they want under plans to tackle complaints over long-hours culture
- Goldman Sachs has told senior staff to take as many holidays as they want
- Partners and managing directors will have no cap on number of paid leave days
- Staff will have time off to ‘rest and recharge’ in a bid to tackle long-hours culture
Goldman Sachs has told senior staff to take as many holidays as they want under plans to tackle complaints over its long-hours culture.
Partners and managing directors were informed there will be no cap on the number of paid leave days they can take as part of a new vacation policy.
It hopes the plan will improve staff ‘wellbeing and resilience’, providing time off to ‘rest and recharge’.
Chief executive David Solomon has approved no cap on paid leave for partners and managing directors at Goldman Sachs
The ‘flexible vacation’ scheme came into effect from May 1 to allow senior staff ‘to take time off … without a fixed vacation day entitlement’, a memo seen by The Daily Telegraph said.
It added that every employee will also be expected to take a minimum of 15 days leave per year from next January, with at least one week of consecutive time off. Junior staff will get an extra two days off each year.
Goldman, the first major financial institution to bring in the policy, is notorious for its long-hours culture.
Last year junior staff begged to work just 80 hours a week amid complaints ‘inhumane’ expectations were leading to mental health issues.
In March, more than 10 staff in their first year at the company reported working around 98 hours each week, according to posts on eFinancial Careers.
Goldman, the first major financial institution to bring in the holiday policy, is notorious for its long-hours culture. Pictured, the company’s London head office
Unlimited holiday policies for staff
Unlimited holidays are offered more widely in the US, and are often popular with startups and tech firms.
Netflix, Kickstarter, and LinkedIn offer unlimited holidays.
Recruitment site Glassdoor offers unlimited holidays to staff in the US but not in the UK.
In the UK, AffectV, Crimson Hexagon, Dropbox, EventBrite, Honeywell, Songkick, Visualsoft, and offer unlimited holiday to staff.
Some companies in the US have launched an unlimited holiday policy and then revoked it later down the line, after employees began taking less leave than before.
One of these was CharlieHR, which launched its unlimited policy when the company was founded in 2015.
After three years, it found staff were taking an around of 21 to 22 days off, with anxiety growing about what was an ‘acceptable’ number of days to take.
Research has found that these policies are most successful when the company culture promotes taking leave.
Evernote, which runs an unlimited holiday policy, also gives staff a $ 1,000 annual holiday stipend, acting as an incentive to take the break.
Chief executive David Solomon said that the company is taking complaints from junior staff about workload and hours ‘very seriously’.
Unlimited holiday policies have become popular with some firms, including Glassdoor, LinkedIn and Netflix, as a way to stop burnout among staff.
Goldman is one of a handful of financial institutions to get staff back in the office five days a week – Mr Solomon described working from home a ‘temporary aberration’.
He said that being in the office is ‘critical’ to company operations
On February 1, only half of the company’s 10,000 employees showed up to the New York City headquarters when offices reopened. Workers were reportedly been given more than two weeks notice to prepare for the return.
Mr Solomon has repeatedly argued that remote work ‘is not ideal for us, and it’s not a new normal.’
He has maintained his distaste for remote work throughout the pandemic, arguing that one of Goldman Sachs’ strengths is its network of staff collaborating together to serve clients.
He believes that working from home inhibits relationship building and growth.
‘The secret sauce to our organization is, we attract thousands of really extraordinary young people who come to Goldman Sachs to learn to work, to create a network of other extraordinary people, and work very hard to serve our clients,’ he told CNBC in March.
‘Part of the secret sauce is that they come together and collaborate and work with people that are much more experienced than they are.’
Although he acknowledged that some businesses have made remote successful, he doesn’t believe that is the best operating model for his company.
‘I do think for a business like ours which is an innovative, collaborative apprenticeship culture, this is not ideal for us and it’s not a new normal,’ he said.
Goldman Sachs reported its best years ever over the past two years, with the company recording a profit of $ 21.6billion in 2021.