America's 'Perfect' Job Perk: the Precation

It's not a trend, but maybe it should be
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 1, 2014 12:42 PM CDT
America's 'Perfect' Job Perk: the Precation
Some companies want employees to take a break before they start their jobs.   (Shutterstock)

The last thing a company wants in a new hire is someone worn out from his former position, and two tech firms are creatively combating that. They're pushing their newly minted employees to take a "precation"—a vacation before their job actually begins. Indeed, San Francisco-based real estate search engine 42Floors went so far as to require it ("it" being two paid weeks off) for a new worker, Will Oremus reports at Slate. "We called it a precation,” the CEO says. “It was only a couple of weeks, but he just came in so refreshed and energized." Now, all new employees at the company get the opportunity. "It’s like, ‘Yeah, have a great time! And when you get back here, work your ass off,'" the boss says.

Software company Atlassian prods new workers to take precations, too. And those who stick with the company for five years are handed $3,000 to put toward their dream trip. While Oremus won't go so far as calling the precation a "trend"—42Floors and Atlassian were the only ones doing it that he found—he calls it the "perfect job perk for our overworked times." He notes, via ABC News, that Americans have the longest working days and take the least vacation of any nation in the developed world. "We deserve a break," he writes. The reality is that "many of us, especially in competitive fields, are hesitant to take even the relatively small amount of vacation to which our jobs entitle us." Read his full piece here. (More vacation stories.)

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