The Christmas party is planned, presents have been purchased and the Christmas tree is up - the 2018 festive period is well and truly here. However, one thing you may not have considered in your Christmas planning is how to effectively shut down your office for the festive period. We've put together the following guide on how to take a break over Christmas whilst ensuring that you're ready to start the New Year in the best way possible.
1. Save energy
Turn off the lights, turn down that thermostat and unplug laptop chargers to save energy and money this festive period.
A large part of any office's annual energy bill comes from lighting. Take the time to ensure that all lights and lamps are switched off to enjoy significant savings.
With heating accounting for 35% of the average SME's energy bill, turning down the temperature by just 1°C could reduce your businesses heating bill by up to 8%. On the last day in the office before the Christmas break, remember to turn down the thermostat to reduce consumption, but ensure the temperature is high enough to prevent the weather causing any damage to your property.
Did you know that leaving a laptop on charge for 24 hours costs up to £1.68? If you have twenty employees that all left their laptops plugged in you'd be paying out an extra £12,200 per year. If your Christmas shut down period is 10 days, unplugging or switching off chargers could reduce your bills by £336.
2. Make sure that your staff are paid
If you do require your staff to work during the festive period, make sure you're on top of the correct pay rates, which change when it's a bank holiday. Plus, ensure that scheduled payments for contractors and expenses to go out on time - which means they may need to be sent early.
3. Send out a client newsletter
Send out a newsletter to your clients and contacts list showcasing the highlights of 2018 for you and your business. Plus, this provides an excellent opportunity to thank them for their continued support throughout the year and remind them of Christmas office opening hours.
4. Schedule content where appropriate
Your marketing efforts don't need to take a break just because you are. Schedule social media posts and blog articles to go live while you're not there using tools such as Hootsuite to ensure your visibility is maintained.
5. Make sure your out of office is on
Make sure you and your employees set up an out of office before you finish for the festive period. Be sure to include information on when you'll be back in 2019 and who to contact in case of an emergency.
6. Ensure your voicemail is correct
Similarly to your out of office, make sure your voicemail is correct. Make sure to record a new message with specific information about your shut down dates and emergency contact information.
7. Plan ahead
To make the return to work easier, do some prep for the New Year before you break from Christmas. Set goals and make a plan for 2019, so that you can head into the New Year with more focus and purpose.
We'd like to take this opportunity to wish you a very Merry Christmas and a prosperous 2019 from all at WhitesPay.