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All I really want for Christmas is… more annual leave days

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If employees in Singapore could pick just one thing they really wanted from their employers, what would it be?

According to new research by Robert Half Singapore, the answer is more days off.

The survey of 500 employees in Singapore found 36% put more annual leave at the top of their wish list, followed by more flexible hours (32%) and professional development opportunities (20%).

Other perks such as childcare, laundry services and access to fitness facilities all ranked low on the list of the things employees most desire at work.

However, as it often happens, employers had a different view of what they think their team wants.

When 150 C-level executives where asked the same question, 54% believed what their employees really wanted was more flexible working hours, while less than one in five (18%) nominated more leave days.

Just 12% of employers thought professional development opportunities were the thing their employees most desired.

Christmas wishlist – what employees want versus what C-level executives think they want

  • More holidays and annual leave – 36% vs 18%
  • More flexible work hours – 32% vs 54%
  • More training or professional development opportunities – 20% vs 12%
  • Home office/telecommuting – 9% vs 9%
  • Perks such as child care, laundry and ironing services, fitness center, etc. – 3% vs 7%

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Stella Tang, MD of Robert Half Singapore, believes the employers wish list is more realistic than the employees.

‘”While everyone would like more days off very few companies will increase the amount of annual leave above that which was agreed to when the employee started with the company.

“So while the desire among employees for more days off is strong, it is a wish that is unlikely to come true.”

On the other hand, she noted flexible work arrangements were something within the power of the company to provide.

“Work-life balance is important and flexible work arrangements can go a long way to helping an employee manage their personal and professional responsibilities.

“But as all employees know, there is still no substitute for having a whole day to themselves to do what they want or need to do.”

Image: Shutterstock

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