7 ways employers can encourage employees to go vote

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The 2020 election season has been volatile, but the one theme that breaks through the chaos is how important it is to go out and vote.

Election Day is not a guaranteed day off for all employees. Each state has different statutes for paid time off on Election Day, but there is more employers can do to encourage employees to head to the polls in November.

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SAP, a multinational software corporation that makes enterprise software, is actively encouraging its employees to take the time to vote in general elections this year. SAP supports the Time to Vote and Civic Alliance initiatives, nonpartisan business coalitions that are designed to get companies to help increase voter turnout and recruit employees to volunteer at the polls.

“Our democracy works best when all of us participate, which is why we’re giving our employees the flexibility and time needed to go out and cast their ballots this year,” says Dan Healey, head of human resources at SAP North America. “No one should have to choose between voting and earning a paycheck.”

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As part of its initiative, SAP has put together a list of policies and actions it and other employers can undertake to accommodate voters and get their employees to the polls.

Promote Election Day on Nov. 3 as a day without meetings for employees.
Proactively encourage all managers of employees to provide flexibility to allow employees to vote on Election Day.
Make sure employees are aware of their state’s time off policies regarding Election Day. Be aware that historically long lines are expected on Nov. 3 and that employees may require greater flexibility and time away from work.
Encourage employees to take a moment to make sure they are registered to vote.
Remind employees who plan to vote in person that they can use a personal or vacation day on Election Day.
Promote volunteerism for employees to help out by becoming service poll workers at a polling location.
Provide resources for mail-in ballots and early voting and reminding employees to follow the guidelines of their state of residence.
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