Published July 16, 2012
DENVER – Bart Lorang calls it a "paid, paid vacation."
The CEO and co-founder of Denver-based software provider company FullContact is offering his employees a $7,500 bonus to go on vacation, on top of their normal vacation pay.
So what's the catch? There's three, as Lorang describes in a blog on the company's website.
First, employees must completely go off the technology grid, meaning no e-mail, texting or phone calls. In conjunction with the first rule, employees are not allowed to do any work while on their trip.
Third, employees must actually go on a trip. Lorang explains he believes all his employees deserve a nice vacation, and he chose the $7,500 dollar amount because he believes it is enough for a family of four to take a trip to Mexico for a week.
"We felt that everyone should have the opportunity to take a nice vacation without constantly worrying about how much money they’re spending while on vacation," Lorang blogged.
Lorang tells KDVR he had the idea for the incentive when he was browsing photos of his trip to Egypt. He was struck by a photo of himself riding a camel among the pyramids, but he was texting.
He says experiences like this have made him realized the value of completely disconnecting during a trip, and wants to encourage his employees to do so as well.
Some of Lorang's software engineers that have taken him up on his offer say while it was difficult initially going off the grid, they ended up loving their completely unplugged vacation.
“Absolutely fantastic. I mean you get so used to waking up to emails in the morning,” engineer Kyle Hansen tells KDVR.
His coworker Robbie Jack says though it was hard to give up his gadgets for the trip, he found it extremely beneficial.
“The biggest benefit is when you get back. You’re so much more invigorated, recharged,” Jack told KDVR.
Lorang says he hopes the bonus entices top talent to his company as well, saying he has trouble finding qualified engineers.
In fact, he says FullContact is hiring, for positions including iOS and Mac developer, platform engineer and a role in business development.