The size and form of holiday bonuses paid out by small businesses vary. While some owners dole out flat-rate amounts of cash, others give a percentage of each employee’s salary (with one-week’s worth being the most common amount). Gift cards are another popular option among employers at year’s end. As far as the amount, it’s always a good idea to take how long each employee has been with the company into consideration when calculating the amount of their bonus. If you can’t afford to give out cash bonuses, additional paid time off is a great alternative.
Employees can come to rely on holiday bonuses, growing to count on them as part of their salaries. Thus, you need to set expectations for your staff. If you’ve given out bonuses in the past but won’t be doing so this year, don’t wait until the last minute to let them know. Some employees could be planning to use those funds to cover some of their holiday expenses. So, if you can’t afford to hand out bonuses this year, break the news to your staff sooner rather than later.