Vous lisez : Quebec workers’ vacations too short! – Results of a CROP-CRHA survey

According to a CROP survey conducted in May for the Ordre des conseillers en ressources humaines agréés, more than half the workers in Quebec don’t have enough vacation time to recharge their batteries. 


And this trend is on the rise. In fact, 55% of respondents felt the number of weeks of annual vacation they’re entitled to isn’t enough for them to rest and recuperate. This percentage is much higher than last year, when 43% of respondents were of this opinion.   

“These findings are of some concern when you think about the many physical and mental health problems tied to professional burn-out. Managers have to safeguard this downtime for their employees as they need a period when they can relax and leave their work behind. Otherwise, the risk of absenteeism will rise over the long term,” explained Florent Francoeur, CHRP, Ordre President and CEO.  

Most of the respondents (42%) who felt their vacations were too short have only two weeks off.  

Disparities still exist...

Quebec workers usually take a little more vacation each year (e.g. 2.24 weeks in 2011, compared to 2.18 weeks in 2010). But disparities still exist according to region, age and education. 

For example, fewer employees have two weeks off in the summer in Quebec City (27%) than in Montreal (31%) and the rest of the province (42 %). 

Not surprisingly, it’s often the youngest workers (aged 18 to34) who take only a week (18%). 

Employees don’t negotiate their vacations.

The survey also showed that workers don’t tend to negotiate their vacation time when they’re hired. In fact, 89% of respondents said they hadn’t done so. 

“In our society, where everything is negotiated, you’d think that employees wouldn’t hesitate to discuss their working conditions. It’s surprising to learn that most of them don’t dare negotiate their vacation. Yet organizations have some leeway in this respect,” continued Francoeur.  

Choice of vacation time: seniority and collaboration before hierarchy!

Only 10% of survey respondents indicated that priority is based on hierarchy.  

However, 41% reported that employees choose their vacation time according to seniority. Some 28% said they reached an agreement amongst themselves and try as much as possible to respect each individual’s preference. “This team spirit is a good indication of employee mobilization,” added Francoeur. 

Number of weeks vacation in 2010 and 2011

  2010 2011
None 8 % 12 %
Less than one week 12 % 3 %
One week 10 % 10 %
Two weeks 35% 35%
Three weeks 14 % 19 %
Four weeks 10 % 11 %
More than four weeks 9 % 7 %
Don’t know 3 % 4 %

To learn more…

For the complete CROP-CRHA survey findings, click here (in French only).

About the Ordre

With close to 8,500 members, the Ordre des conseillers en ressources humaines agréés is the fifth largest association of its kind in the world. It is the only organization in Quebec mandated to award human resources professionals a title certifying their competency.  

The Ordre is a leader in employee management practices. Committed to innovation, it supports the ongoing development of human resources professionals (CHRPs) and industrial relations counsellors (CIRCs), thus helping to maintain a healthy balance between employee well-being and organizational success. It is vigilant in ensuring that this multifaceted function promotes leading edge solutions that address the major issues impacting the workforce.  

Through its actions in the public arena, the Ordre contributes to the advancement and reputation of the profession and plays a key influential role in the world of work in Quebec.

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