Within an organization, there are several provisions for leave management. How a company deals with leave applications depends on its business model, but there are some specific regulations around the subject.
The sandwich leave policy is one such provision that creates confusion for workers. Some companies use this policy while others don’t. There are no specific legal restrictions or conditions around the policy, and companies can implement it as long as employee discussions follow.
Here we explore the sandwich leave policy and its implications for employees and employers.
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What is a sandwich leave policy?
Suppose there is a public holiday falling on Friday. You apply for leave on Thursday to get a mini-vacation of four days, including the weekends, at the cost of just one leave from your yearly quota.
However, they revert to your leave mail and ask you to agree that all four days of leave will be removed from your annual leave quota.
What just happened?
Your leaves have been sandwiched.
Here your company is following the sandwich leave policy that allows HR managers to deduct the entire duration of time-off, i.e., the leaves are taken around public holidays such as national holidays and weekends.
The sandwich leave policy was introduced for factory workers where productivity and output greatly depend on the workforce. Companies can implement this policy whether the employees like it or not, as there is no provision against it. Let’s see how the labor law attends to this provision for a better understanding.
What is the sandwich policy rule as per the Labour Law?
The sandwich policy is free of any legal restrictions and provisions in India and several other parts of the world. Globally though labour laws & policies may differ from state to state. Therefore it is best to understand the laws of the state under whose jurisdiction your company comes under while formulating sandwich leave policies.
Companies usually use the policy to deter long time offs and prevent employee absenteeism. A company can use a sandwich leave policy after discussing the terms with the employee. If there is no mention of the policy in the employment contract and your company still enforces it, you can talk to the HR department regarding the same.
However, if the sandwich leave policy is mentioned in the employment contract, the company can club the time-off and public holidays as per the policy. As per the Labour Law in the country, adult workers are entitled to two days of paid leave for every twenty days worked.
Thus, in a year, a worker can take 15 days of paid leaves as per the law, provided they worked consistently without absenteeism. Here’s what the provision of Labour Law states about the leave entitlement for workers:
|Type of Leave
|Privileged Leave/ Earned Leave
|Quantum per year
|30 days after 12 months of continuous employment
|5 leaves after 3 months of employment completing 60 days of work in that period
|Once a year
|90 days of paid leave in 3 years
What are the advantages and disadvantages of creating a sandwich leave policy?
If a company feels that the employees are exploiting the leave policy by clubbing regular working days with public holidays, then a sandwich leave policy can help curb the practice. Another benefit of the policy is that it can prevent high absenteeism around the holiday season.
If many workers take leave around the same time, production at the company will be affected. This can have a severe impact on revenue and profitability. Companies with global customers can use a sandwich leave policy to ensure customer services are not affected.
When employees and customers are in different geographies, time management is of the essence. This leave policy can ensure continuous customer satisfaction. When not appropriately utilized, the sandwich leave policy can create a severe distrust between the employer and employees.
It is the responsibility of the employers to inform workers about the approach to ensure there are no unpleasant surprises.
How Vacation Tracker can help
For HR managers, leave management can be a herculean task without tools to aid them. Truein is an end-to-end attendance system that offers leave management at scale. With Truein, you can create multiple leave management rules, including the sandwich leave policy.
HR managers can automate the flow between attendance, leaves, and payroll with Truein, saving resources that can be invested in boosting the organization’s overall productivity. Setting up Sandwich policy on Truein is easy. You can apply sandwich rule by enabling the policy “Apply sandwich rule” directly from the Web Dashboard. Here is the process.
Go to Leaves. Setup Leaves > Manage Leave Policies > Add/Edit policy and scroll down to enable “Apply sandwich rule” policy. It’s that easy.
Leave management is essential to ensure a friendly work environment. The sandwich leave policy must be carefully implemented. As an HR manager, you must provide a well-structured leave policy. Help employees understand their leave entitlements and policies around the same.
When workers know the company’s policies, they can avail of leaves effectively without affecting productivity and revenue. Other features include attendance and leave policy management, set alerts, automatically creating attendance reports, and many more.