Goldman Sachs offers senior staff ‘unlimited holidays’

Goldman Sachs will permit senior staff to take as much paid annual leave as they want under a new “flexible vacation” scheme, it has been reported.

The global investment bank has introduced the new policy which enables partners and managing directors to take as many holidays as they wish, according to an internal memo seen by The Telegraph.

The scheme, which came into effect from 1 May, will allow senior employees “to take time off when needed without a fixed vacation day entitlement”, the memo said.

Staff at all levels will also be mandated to take at least 15 days leave per year, with at least one week of consecutive time off.

“As a firm, we are committed to providing our people with differentiated benefits and offerings to support wellbeing and resilience,” the memo reads.

“As we continue to take care of our people at every stage of their careers and focus on the experience of our partners and managing directors, we are pleased to announce enhancements and changes to our global vacation programme designed to further support time off to rest and recharge.”

The news comes after David Solomon, the boss of Goldman Sachs, rejected working from home as a “new normal”, describing it as an “aberration”.

Speaking in February 2021, Solomon said it did not suit the work culture at the bank.

“I do think for a business like ours, which is an innovative, collaborative apprenticeship culture, this is not ideal for us,” he said.

“And it’s not a new normal. It’s an aberration that we’re going to correct as soon as possible.

Mere weeks later, a leaked survey from junior bankers at Goldman Sachs revealed the extent of staff frustration with the demanding work culture at the company.

One worker said working 20-hour shifts was “inhumane”, while another said the treatment they received from senior bankers was “arguably worse” than that of his upbringing in foster care, citing stress and lack of sleep.

“I didn’t come into this job expecting a 9am to 5pm,” one analyst said. “But I also wasn’t expecting consistent 9ams to 5ams either.”

The analysts also pointed towards what they alleged was a culture of toxicity in the workplace, with 83 per cent claiming that they had been shouted or sworn at while at work.

Solomon, said he took the complaints “very seriously”.

He told staff that he would try to “strengthen enforcement” of the “Saturday rule” that states that employees should not work between 9pm on Fridays and 9am on Sundays, apart from during certain circumstances.

Goldman Sachs follows Netflix, LinkedIn and job site Glassdoor in offering employees “unlimited vacation” policies.

The schemes, which tend to be offered by companies expecting long hours from staff, have also attracted criticism, with the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) stating such policies only work if firms have a culture of it being acceptable to take such leave.

The Independent has approached Goldman Sachs for comment.