With the infamous Fourth of July festivities occurring throughout this week, we hope you have been able to request and obtain some time off of work to celebrate, relax, and recharge. If you are still hesitating whether you should request time off and how to do so, read about what you can do to ask in an appropriate, effective manner (that will help your chances of approval!).

Do Your Homework:

If you are planning to ask for time off, make sure to read any company policies about this topic in order to make sure you are following all guidelines. For example, if your company requires that you give notice of your request at least 4 weeks prior to your desired vacation, do not ask last minute. In fact, it is almost always better to ask way ahead of time, this way your manager will have time to prepare for your absence and allocate your assignments to other employees.

Extra note:

  • Make sure to also check if your organization provides paid vacations. Best not to assume anything before checking!
  • If you are unaware of any policy that has to do with taking time off, ask! You are so much better off asking another employee, potentially within the HR department, how your company handles and distributes vacation days before heading straight to the manager.

Tips on How and When to Ask:

  • Ask at a good time – This may seem obvious, but make sure you are asking at a time that is both right for you and for the company. If you are swamped with projects, wait until the busy period is over and everything has cooled down, then ask for your vacation. (Keep this in mind for your boss as well – if they are super busy, they are less likely to approve your requested time.)
  • Document! – Make sure your requested time off is written down and documented. This will help with your record keeping as well as your boss’.
  • Prepare before you leave – If you know that you are going on your vacation soon, make sure all of your work is complete beforehand. Even if this requires some extra hours in the office, they will pay off in retrospect!
  • Remember: this is a request! – If you know that you are due for some much-needed relaxation, there is a likely chance that your boss knows as well. For that reason, always keep in mind that you are asking, not demanding your vacation. Be conscious of your tone, body language, and way of wording.
  • Be open – Make sure that your coworkers, bosses, and anyone else who it may concern is aware that you are leaving for the time period. Share with them any projects you have contributed to or completed so that there is no confusion once you are gone.
  • Collaborate with your coworkers – There will always be “popular” times to take off work. Divide these days up and work as a team with your coworkers to maximize each employee’s satisfaction.

Tips for New Employees!

Remember that if you are new to a job, you are expected to be prepared, productive, and most importantly, present. We recommend that you do not ask for time off within the first several months of your job if you can avoid it.

If you have a few more questions, check out this great article on “How to Ask for Time Off at Your New Job (the Right Way)” by themuse!

Looking for more? Read about our guide to help you get along at work!

Searching for a new job? Look through our open jobs list!