Employer Holiday Trends Study

In 2015 HRS reached out to 2500+ savvy legally conscious U.S. nationwide employers, and we send hearty thanks to our study participants. Here are a few highlights of study findings:

It’s no surprise that 100% of respondents are staging some sort of Holiday celebration. It stands to reason that those not celebrating were among the few who declined participation. 

The vast majority are specifically limiting alcohol, including those who serve alcohol in line of business. The remaining are taking other measures to reduce liability, while still accepting some risk.

While 100% of respondents tell us participation is optional, continued studies tell us that employees still feel pressured to participate. After-hours events continue to show declining participation and/or declining employee appreciation.

Christmas trees remain popular with the majority of respondents; however, specific religious reference (other than the tree itself) continues to disappear with many. 

68% of respondents are formally inviting employees to participate in Holiday planning. Formal committees are growing in popularity, as employers continue to shift toward regular year-round events, especially events during business hours. 

Changes since last year reflect tendency to 1) take pressure off of Religious affiliation, 2) balance work and personal life, 3) avoid ostentatious spending and 4) align with corporate culture and employer brand. 

Tangled light challenges, BINGO, themed days, decorating and charitable events remain popular Holiday season practices.  

Sharon Alvord, Director of Human Resources for Trans International LLC in Menomonee Falls WI, tells us about her organization’s lively “Where’s the Pickle?” game involving a constantly rehidden tree ornament.  Chris Boettcher, General Manager/COO of San Francisco area’s Burlingame Country Club, tells us about a planned facility swap with another area club. Tony Hannan, CEO of Burger & Beer Joint with South Beach FL headquarters, tells us he’s seeing a variety of programs emerging, autonomously planned at newly franchised locations.  

“Alcohol is the root issue of a lot of different legal claims,” said Nicholas J. Pappas, a partner in the employment litigation practice at Weil, Gotshal & Manges in New York City. 

65 percent of HR professionals surveyed by the Society for Human Resource Management said their company would be hosting a Holiday party in 2015, and 59 percent will be serving alcoholic drinks at this year’s Holiday functions. 

Visit HR Advisor's survey for 2015-2016 trends. 

Contact HRS for trends and compliance tips toward great employee event planning, or simply to tell us what your company is doing!