It’s not beneath big companies to dangle next-level perks in hopes of wooing new talent, whether it’s pristine offices that provide all-day gourmet meals and on-site massages, or annual vacation stipends and nap pods. Though good luck finding many employers that’ll give you a whopping 12 weeks of “Life Leave” every year to do whatever the heck you want, which is exactly what one major corporation in Australia is doing.
Global accounting firm Ernst & Young is now offering its Australian employees between six and 12 weeks annually of “life leave” for them to spend working part-time, traveling, or simply kicking back and relaxing. It’s part of an initiative the company is rolling out in hopes of better catering to millennial employees who demand more flexibility when it comes to work schedules, according to a Business Insider report.
In addition to the extended leave option — which it’s worth noting can be taken in one or two chunks and is unpaid — the company is also introducing two other new perks starting April 1: the option to work full-time during the school year with all school holidays off (ideal for parents with small kids) or to work part-time hours for three months of the year.
The new policies are “intended to address a growing demand for flexible work environments in general, not just working parents,” according to Kate Hillman, people partner for Ernst & Young Oceania.
The company is optimistic that these cushy new perks will help them recruit and retain excellent employees, particularly since its internal research suggests that a flexible schedule increases employee engagement by 11%, per BI. It’s tough to say, but we’d venture a guess that three months of vacation (though unpaid vacation) every year certainly couldn’t hurt if you’re hoping to guard against burnout.
There’s no word yet on if these new perks will be available to employees outside Australia, but we’ve reached out to Ernst & Young to see if it may at least offer them stateside at some point, in which case, it may be worth pivoting to a sexy new career in accounting services.