Bad Weather Rules

Bad Weather Rules

  • Date: Thursday 20th December 2018
  • PDF: Download

Were you caught out by last year’s snow days? If you haven’t yet, it’s high time to review your policy on bad weather days!

Your options:

Unpaid time off in adverse conditions

If your policy allows, you can send staff home without pay on days you can’t operate. However, this needs to be clear in your paperwork and employees must have signed up to this rule. If they haven’t yet, please contact your HR consultant for further advice.

Time in lieu

Some employers choose to ‘bank’ the hours not worked and ask employees to make up for them during busier times. This way, staff still get paid but employers don’t suffer losses. You will have to carefully monitor the hours accumulated of course, which can be a bit of an administrative nightmare. Also remember that the working time directive still applies and during busier periods employees should not exceed their maximum hours across the week.


Allowing staff to take paid holiday mainly benefits employers – holiday needs to be taken anyway so letting staff take it during downtimes is of course ideal. Employees may not be happy to take their annual leave because usually bad weather days don’t occur in blocks, making the ‘holiday’ hardly relaxing. However, if money is an issue, staff may appreciate the option (which by the way can’t be enforced!)

Alternative duties

Stock take? Cleaning and organising the warehouse? Booking some last-minute training? Some employers can use unexpected downtime to catch up on some of those dreaded maintenance jobs.

Source: Manuela Grossmann, SSG

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