Closing for Christmas. It doesn’t sound like too controversial a decision but, for law firms across Scotland, it’s certainly a challenging one. There is the need to balance the needs of your clients with the wellbeing of your employees.
Seasonal sickness may already be impacting your coverage and so Christmas may seem like a lucrative time to catch up on work … but is it worth it? Would it be damaging to staff morale to stay open? What happens if your clients are likely to need support during the festive period?
Let’s take a look and weigh up the merits of each option.
Closing the office
Taking the decision to close will no doubt be met with cheer from your employees. Christmas is the chance to take the best part of two weeks to fully switch off, spend time with family and friends and recharge. Making people give up this time definitely seems more “humbug” than “holidays”. It’s more than just not coming into the office, it’s about properly being able to disconnect. The pandemic made everyone reflect more on their work/life balance and being able to take Christmas off is a part of this.
Depending on the area of law you cover, there might not even be a need for your teams to be on hand, either. Many of your clients will, like you, be considering closing for the holidays and therefore are unlikely to be making a last minute phone call for support. Is a skeleton workload really enough to make your employees come into the office?
If you work in international law, family law or criminal law, there is a high likelihood that your clients may need your services over the Christmas period. To avoid office time altogether, you may want to have any who needs to work doing so from home. This still gives your clients the coverage and support they need whilst not actually asking your employees to make the trip to the office.
You may also want to consider “rotas” to give your employees at least a couple of days off. This seems like the fairest way to ensure that everyone does get the chance to recharge but that crucial client time is not lost to a full office closure.
Whatever you opt to do, the Legal team at HRC Recruitment would like to wish you all a very safe and healthy festive season.
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