There’s no doubt that the last couple of years have put personnel departments through the wringer. They’ve had to cope with the logistical problems of scheduling through a pandemic and the broader consequences of a general shift to homeworking.

Given that you’ve been dealing with these looming obstacles, you might be forgiven for having overlooked the upcoming Jubilee Weekend. So, in case you missed it: the Queen is presently celebrating an unprecedented 70 years on the throne, leading to the declaration of a novel extended Bank Holiday weekend in early June. The end-of-May holiday has been moved to Thursday June 2, and a special one-off holiday has been declared for Friday June 3…so a four-day weekend is fast approaching!

While we’re very pleased for Her Majesty – and will be raising our glasses at the appropriate moments – those tasked with the maintenance of staffing levels may find all this a bit of a stretch. Here’s our guide to coping.

Muddling through

The first thing to point out is that there is no general right to time off for bank holidays. If you absolutely must open the office next Thursday, consult your employment contracts. You’ll likely find that you can pull staff back from the celebrations. Let’s hope you budgeted for time-and-a-half, holidays in lieu or whatever else is stated in the terms of employment.

Of course, dragging unwilling staff back into a workplace is no fun. So, be canny! Most offices harbour a refusenik or two – people who don’t participate in the national mood of celebration and would be perfectly happy to work through the holiday, especially if you can provide a juicy incentive. At a moment like this, these individuals are your new best friends.

Still coming up short? You might consider hiring agency staff – although rates are likely to be through the roof for obvious reasons.

If the thought of the schedule juggling required to action those last few points makes you wince, it may be time to give the LeavePlanner team a ring. We’d be happy to discuss how our software can help you smooth over all sorts of staffing hiccups.

And, if you’re forced to close the office despite your best efforts, take consolation that everyone else is off, too.

For any queries, call Steve on 01252 636 070 or email