Goldman Sachs offers top bankers unlimited vacation days

Senior bankers will now be able to take as many vacation days as needed, Goldman Sachs (GS) said in a note to staff shared with CNN Business. And from next year, all staff “will be required to be away from work for at least 15 days” each year.

Bankers who have not yet been appointed as a partner or managing director will remain on a fixed holiday allowance but will be granted two additional days from next year.

“As a company, we are committed to providing our employees with differentiated benefits and offerings to support wellbeing and resilience,” the memo reads.

The new policy follows a growing trend of flexibility on Wall Street. Banks are increasingly competing with startups, Big Tech and the crypto space to attract young talent. As a result, Wall Street needs to loosen its tie, literally, to looser dress codes, higher wages and bonuses, and other overtures aimed at presenting a softer, more worker-friendly image.

Goldman, in particular, has come under scrutiny for its workplace culture. A year ago, a group of first-year bankers told managers they worked 100 hours a week, slept just five hours a night and suffered workplace abuse that seriously affected their mental health.
The bank responded at the time, saying it was taking the complaints seriously and would speed up hiring and strengthen enforcement of rules aimed at preventing Saturday work.
The pandemic has also triggered a tectonic shift in modern work culture. Across industries, workers are pushing back against strict Monday-Friday office routines. Companies are responding with higher wages and greater flexibility, even on Wall Street.
Citibank (VS), in particular, adopted a hybrid work schedule and encouraged staff to take time off to avoid burnout. Citi CEO Jane Fraser, who took the helm just over a year ago, said the move was both an ethical and a strategic consideration – it positions Citi as the most trusted Wall Street giant. cool and friendliest to take advantage in the talent war.
Unlimited vacation policies are becoming increasingly popular, but they have their detractors. Some companies have found that workers, especially younger ones, end up taking fewer days off than they otherwise would out of a desire to prove their commitment. A 2018 study found that employees with unlimited PTO take an average of 13 days off per year, while those with traditional plans average 15 days per year.

— Anna Cooban of CNN Business contributed to this article.

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