A PR business based in Manchester is in the news for offering its employees the option to book "hangover days". This is alongside other perks such as unlimited holiday and flexible working arrangements. Rather than a sickie, a "hangover day" is described by the business as a day working at home, in PJs on a sofa. It is a workplace perk that relies on the honesty of the worker - who doesn't have to lie about taking a sick day. A hangover was deemed to be a sickness by a German court recently but many workers would be unlikely to want to admit a hangover to their employer.
In the festive party season, a hangover day or two would probably be popular flexible working option. It may even lead to improved productivity.
As with all such perks, employers should monitor the taking of days and make expectations clear. The PR business in question has said that it has not been abused so far, but it would have to have a think if it were used 2 or 3 times a week or if client meetings were missed.
About 84% of official workplace social events involve alcohol, according to research carried out for the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, and shown exclusively to Wake Up To Money. With the Christmas party season in full flow, 40% of businesses that are planning a Christmas event say that alcohol will be freely available and paid for by the company, while 39% say alcohol will be available to buy with no limit. The impact can be positive and negative. Four out of 10 HR managers surveyed said that alcohol can cause problems at work. But almost 50% of the managers said having some drinks at social events had a positive effect on morale and team bonding.