Why educational leave is interesting for businesses

14 of the 16 Länder offer educational leave, but only 1 to 2% of employees use it (we have reported this). The start-up Bildungsurlauber.de wants to fill these knowledge gaps: Bildungsurlauber.de is the largest information and booking platform for educational holidays in Germany. She supports you with your legal questions, the search for seminars and the request for educational leave. Lara Körber from Bildungsurlauber explains in this interview why educational leave makes sense from a company perspective and what advantages it offers both companies and employees.

Strengthen employee loyalty

Online commerce news: In your opinion, what are the main advantages for employers if they allow their employees to take educational leave? What specific added value does this bring to companies?

Lara Korber: Educational leave is as varied thematically as the individual needs of its own employees. I am convinced that companies will not be able to meet all the wishes of their employees through internal training alone. From health prevention to marketing training – educational leave makes this possible. For me, this is the main advantage of educational leave for companies. Therefore: Organizations should view educational leave as support rather than absence – and in particular as support for the individual needs of their own employees.

To what extent does educational leave contribute to employee retention and satisfaction?

Many employees are afraid to request educational leave because they are worried about how their own employer will react. In such a corporate culture, the needs of employees are quickly ignored. As a business, proactively informing your employees about educational leave is one way to increase emotional connection and motivation among employees – showing them appreciation and fostering their personal development.

Benefits for businesses

Are there any examples or reports of companies already supporting educational leave and what changes have they seen in their business as a result?

I am not aware of any investigation into this. This is why we interviewed the leavers themselves. For example, 45 percent of 900 respondents who participated in a health-focused educational vacation reported that their health improved as a result of participating in the educational vacation. 42 percent even said it had a positive influence on their sick days.

What types of educational leave are particularly popular or effective for employees, and what positive impact could they have on the workplace? Are there also negative experiences?

Language courses and seminars on physical and mental health are particularly appreciated by employees. The latter focus particularly on maintaining the long-term performance of employees – in times of increased sick days due to burnout or back problems, this is highly professional. Since all educational leave seminars have been officially monitored and recognized by the federal states, there is a promise of added value for the content transmitted.

How do employees react to the offer? How much is educational leave?

In our experience, the extent to which educational leave is used depends on how transparently a company communicates about educational leave and how openly employees evaluate the company's internal corporate culture. Currently, around 3.5 percent of the country's 27 million employees make use of their right to educational leave. So there is still a lot to do.

What advice would you give to companies that are still hesitant to offer educational leave?

Educational leave is a law and not the goodwill of companies. Nevertheless, companies can breathe a sigh of relief, because the law has of course also taken into account the needs of employers: in most states there is a maximum legal limit of employees who can take educational leave in a company per company. year. In Rhineland-Palatinate, for example, the maximum limit is 20 percent. The fear that everyone will suddenly participate in continuing education at the same time is therefore unfounded.

Conclusion: benefits for both parties

We would like to thank Lara for this fascinating interview on the theme of educational leave. The conversation showed that educational leave is not only beneficial for employees. It is also interesting for companies to actively inform themselves about the possibilities and support them. The new knowledge can be used in the company, but health prevention also pays off in the long term.

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