This policy relates to the types of leaves that GitLab offers and the guidelines associated with each leave type.
Time away from work can be extremely helpful for maintaining a healthy work/life balance. GitLab encourages managers and leadership to set the example by taking time off when needed, and ensuring their reports do the same.
Taking time off is not a selfish behavior. Not only is time away from work aligned with GitLab's operating principle Family and friends first, work second, but it is vital to maintaining mental health. It is also a core part of the creative process.
It is so important to take time off to recharge batteries and refresh the mind so you can come back to GitLab with renewed energy and be prepared to do your best work ever!
This page is written with a focus on vacation. The below recommendations on communicating your time off apply to time off for all reasons where possible and avoid concerns of health, safety, or job abandonment. If taking time off for medical needs or sick time, whether physical or mental, please follow our Sick Time Policy.
If you are taking Parental Leave, please see our Parental Leave Policy.
A support engineer remarked that “In the 3 months I've been at GitLab, I've taken more time off than the last 2 years at my previous job.”
Another great example of taking time off is a GitLab team member taking a day to do some spring cleaning. Vacations don't have to be trips to exotic places, but instead could be taking some time for oneself at home.
If you are taking Parental Leave, please see our Parental Leave Policy.
Paid time off is in addition to any official public holidays that apply to the country where you live. When accounting for such holidays in PTO by Roots, do specify a "Public Holidays" event. This helps us to ensure that all of our Team Members are meeting at least the Statutory Vacation Requirements.
As we all work remotely it can sometimes be difficult to know when and how to plan time off. Here is some advice and guidance on how this can be done in an easy and collaborative way. Please note that for audit and compliance purposes, all team members are required to use PTO by Roots as the single source of truth to accurately track and communicate all time off.
email@example.com a special request. You will need additional permission if you want to take more than 25 consecutive calendar days (including weekends and holidays) off. The 25 calendar day limit is per vacation, not per year. You can have multiple vacations per year that add up to more than 25 calendar days in total; there is no limit to this.
🌴 Vacationoption in PTO by Roots.
firstname.lastname@example.org your specific request and the Absence Management Team will complete your request, per the instructions. Events can only be changed after the PTO by Roots event has completed itself.
If you decide to work on a holiday and then take another day off in lieu of the actual holiday date, we ask that you choose Public Holiday as a PTO category, and in the section
What is this OOO for? please clarify that this day is taken in lieu of the actual holiday date.
Communicate broadly when you will be away so other people can manage time efficiently, projects don't slip through the cracks, and so that you don't get bothered while away.
OOO from YYYY-MM-DD to YYYY-MM-DD, please contact XXX for assistance.
OOOto your status message will keep you from appearing in the reviewer roulette.
helpto indicate which weeks you won't be able to participate. Pairings will automatically resume when you’re back.
Hey team, just a reminder that I’m out today. Please take a look at my open tickets. Thanks!
Hello team, I am out of the office for the next several days. Please double check the pending tasks on our team's Google Doc for any upcoming deadlines.
Emergencies, by definition, are unexpected. They can range from natural disasters, terrorist events, accidents, family deaths, hospitalization and any other unexpected situation. During these times we ask team members to use their best judgement as well as listen to and adhere to public safety officials when possible. If an unexpected emergency occurs please contact your manager via Slack or email as soon as possible if you will be unavailable or unable to work. This will allow your manager to confirm your safety and reassign any critical work during your absence. Please make sure you've added at least one emergency contact in Workday. We will only contact your emergency contact if we are unable to reach you via Slack, email or phone. We also recommend that if you are able, to use the
Public Emergency OOO category in PTO by Roots.
Returning from PTO of any length can feel overwhelming. Consider implementing these strategies when returning from time off in order to make the most of the rest and reflection you've achieved.
Remember that it's normal to take extra time to catch up after returning from paid time off. Taking time off doesn't mean that you need to work extra hours before or after your vacation. When taking extended time off, expect to have reduced capacity to take on new work the week of your return while you're catching up on the work that happened while you were away. Remember that it's impossible to know everything.
Honor a window of transition when returning from PTO and recognize that rest and time off is productive. Big, reflective moments may happen when you take a step back and reflect. Before catching up on all missed emails and Slack messages, consider first revisiting priority projects to take action on these reflections. In our interview about managing burnout, John Fitch described this approach as spending time working on your projects, rather than in your projects. This could look like blocking off a few days with no meetings to complete deep work on an OKR or hosting a collaborative session with your team to brainstorm.
When returning from paid time off, it can be helpful to schedule a coffee chat or two on the day of your return to get caught up, share stories from your time off, and simply reconnect with your team members. It also provides a nice break from to-dos and unread emails. This type of conversation may occur organically in a colocated office but needs to be managed with intent in an all-remote company.
The People Operations team is able to adjust active PTO events and past PTO events. If you need the team to adjust an event, please send an email to
email@example.com with the dates and time e.g. 'please remove two hours of PTO from October 31st'.
We encourage everyone to fully step away from work on their days off but understand that unforseen events can arise.
Sick time refers to the time away a team member needs to recover from short-term (non-chronic, or reoccuring) sickness such as but not limited to covid-19, menstrual pain, cold/flu etc, care for a close family member recovering from illness, or for preventative reasons like a doctor’s appointment. Eligible family members includes but may not be limited to: parent(s), child(ren), spouse, domestic partner, grandparent(s), grandchild(ren), or sibling(s).
In keeping with our values of CREDIT, we have crafted the following protocols around GitLab's global sick time policy available to all GitLab team members. Team members may be eligible for their own country's Sick Time Policies and should review eligiblilty under these policies as they may offer more time away or have different reporting procedures. We understand team members experience situations when they need continuous time away from work (5 days or more) to care for themselves or a family member, or situations when they just need a few days (less than 5), GitLab's Sick Time policy is applicable in both situations.
*Sick time does not get paid out in case of termination, nor does it reduce your final paycheck in case of a negative balance.
Continuous Time Away (in excess of 5 days or more), or Non-Continuous if related to the same illness:
Whenever allowed by law, GitLab's Sick Time Policy will supplement a team member's pay up to 100% of their regular salary for up to 25 working days of continous absences, and run concurrently with any statutory Sick Leave policies team members are eligible for. Eligibility is calculated on a rolling 12-month period, and only pertains to continuous absences when team members need to be away from work for 5 or more continuous days or non-continuous if related to the same illness.
Non-Continuous Absences or absences less than 5 continuous days:
If you or a loved one is ill, we want you to take care of yourself or your loved one(s). To facilitate this, you should take sick time when you need it, but you still need to report when you take sick time by entering the dates as an
Out Sick type of OOO event in PTO by Roots via Slack. Once entered in PTO by Roots, your sick time will be automatically updated in BambooHR and payroll can note and update any other systems if needed.
If you end up needing sick leave for more than 5 consecutive calendar days, or 5 non-continuous calendar days related to the same illness, please follow the instructions in the Communicating Illness-Related Leave section.
In the United States, team members may experience a qualifying condition under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) after 3 days of continuous or non-continuous absences (if related to the same condition). If you are missing more than 3 calendar days of work due to a serious medical condition or to care for a family member with a serious medical condition, your time away will be reviewed to determine if it qualifies as leave under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and/or any concurrent state sick leave statutes. Team Members may notify GitLab as of the 3rd day of their absence, but are required to notify the Absence Management Team [firstname.lastname@example.org] no later than the 5th consecutive/non-consecutive absence so that the team can process your time off under the applicable leave laws.
Sick Pay will be coordinated with Short-Term Disability, and/or the equivalent State pay benefits.
Employees of GitLab B.V. have further rights and responsibilities regarding sick time based on Dutch law, as written into their employment contracts:
email@example.com the Manager and (if possible) team member.
Please be aware that certain countries require a medical certificate, doctor's note or similar type of documentation for your sick time. Please review your employment contract or your country's Sick Time policy to determine what documentation may be needed.
Eligibility for GitLab's Sick Time policy will require team members to provide evidence, in accordance with local requirements, supporting the need for Sick Leave.
Team Members may add the evidence to BambooHR themselves or email the Absence Management team (firstname.lastname@example.org). If you choose to upload the evidence, please email email@example.com and inform them that you have added it.
In the unfortunate event that a team member is dealing with a medical situation, they are under no obligation to reveal details to their manager directly. Instead, you can reach out to the Absence Management Team
firstname.lastname@example.org. The Absence Management Team will inform the People Business Partner and Manager on a need-to-know basis, but will only provide details related to leave dates; not illness. If the manager does become aware of the team members illness, the manager should under no circumstances reveal any illness-related leave to other team members to ensure we respect the privacy of the team member affected.
If you believe you need reasonable accommodations to perform the essential functions of your job in accordance with applicable law(s), please email email@example.com (Non-US Only). US team members please follow the steps outlined in the handbook.
If a team member starts the conversation with their manager, or People Business Partner, the manager or People Business Partner should either reach out to the Absence Management Team by emailing
firstname.lastname@example.org, or direct the team member to follow the steps outline in the handbook (links above).
The Absence Management Team will keep a log of all accommodation requests. What can (or must) be accommodated varies from location to location. GitLab will comply with the applicable laws in your specific location.
For team members who are on paid or unpaid leave of absence like parental leave, short or long-term disability, or other approved leaves there is no expectation that work would be accomplished during this time. Team members should use their approved paid or unpaid leave as an opportunity to focus on their health and well being. For managers it is important that you do not reach out to team members and ask them to complete work while on an approved leave of absence. An occasional quick call for a simple question is acceptable but these should be infrequent and simple requests that can be answered during that conversation.
We do understand that during extended periods of time off team members may still want to feel connected. We encourage team members at their discretion to maintain a social connection with their peers and team members. This is completely up to the team member on leave on how or if they want to remain connected while on leave of absence.
For managers it is ok to reach out to a team member every 3-4 weeks to just to say hello. These conversations should remain social and avoid work related topics.
Details relating to Unpaid Personal Leave can be found on the Leave of Absence page.
All team members and Managers, including those employed under a PEO, are expected to log all time away requests into PTO by Roots (Vacation, Public Holiday, Friends & Family, Sick Time, etc.)
PTO by Roots allows team members and managers to coordinate time off seamlessly with intuitive Slack commands. The integration from Slack and BambooHR automatically monitors PTO balances and takes action; PTO by Roots will automatically add any time off taken for sick and vacation accruals to BambooHR. PTO by Roots also reminds employees of their upcoming time off and helps them assign roles and tasks for co-workers, giving all parties involved greater alignment and peace of mind.
Please be aware that new team members' PTO by Roots accounts are activated and synced automatically once a day, so if you try to access PTO by Roots on your first day and receive an error message, please attempt to access PTO by Roots on Day 2. If you still receive an error message, let your assigned People Connect Team member know in your onboarding issue.
GitLab teammate questions about PTO by Roots can be directed to
#people-connect Slack channel.
/pto-roots oooCreate an OOO event.
/pto-roots whosoutSee upcoming OOO for everyone in the channel where this command is used.
/pto-roots @usernameCheck if a particular person is OOO and if they are, see which of your co-workers are covering for them.
/pto-roots @usergroupSee upcomming OOO for everyone on the particular user group.
/pto-roots feedbackThis is your direct line to support. At any time, use this command to report bugs or share your thoughts on how the product can be improved or what’s working well.
/pto-roots helpA top-level look at PTO by Roots items that you may need help with, and how to receive help.
You can find the Home Tab by visiting
Apps in the menu bar within Slack, and search for or select PTO by Roots. From the Home Tab you can do the follwoing.
It should be noted that the sync between PTO by Roots and BambooHR will only take place after an PTO event has taken place. BambooHR cannot see scheduled/future PTO events.
Other OOO options include:
|Type of OOO||PTO?||Slack Status|
|Mandatory Civilian Service||No||Unavailable|
|Family and Friends Day||No||Unavailable|
|CEO Shadow Program||No||Unavailable|
These other types of OOO categories do not count as PTO. These categories are an easy way to correctly track your time and communicate your status without manually updating both your calendar and your Slack status. If you prefer to do it manually, that's ok too. If you are called for Mandatory Civilian Service or Jury Duty, please notify your manager and team, as there may need to be added support for your tasks if your service is for a longer length of time.
If you receive an error message "Uh-oh! It doesn't look like you have access to PTO by Roots" please attempt the following steps.
PTO by Roots allows you to sync time off requests with your Google Calendar.
A calendar invite will also be sent to your manager to help them keep track of their team's time away. This event will always be based on the calendar date and will not adjust for timezones. If you are a manager with team members in varying timezones, you may end up with calendar invites that do not accurately reflect the actual time away. As a manager, you can simply decline the calendar invite and manually create a correct entry on your own calendar without affecting the actual time off request.
PTO by Roots can automatically set your OOO status in Slack and apply “Do Not Disturb” settings while you’re away. You must add these permissions individually.
PTO by Roots provides an experience that allows you to set roles and tasks for co-workers while you’re away. Accepted roles then become a part of a Slack away message that appears as co-workers try to tag you in discussions while you’re OOO.
Before assigning a
#channel to a role, please ask for permission to do so in that channel.
Especially in large channels and during popular vacation times, PTO's role reminders could create a lot of noise, so some teams may recommend against them until there is an option to allow turning off the PTO notifications.
You can bulk add holidays based on your region and then modify them manually if needed. Any Public Holidays added to PTO by Roots in your dashboard will not auto-set an OOO event for you, you will still need to create an OOO event if observing that holiday. To add a Public Holiday, follow the below instructions.
Appsin the menu bar within Slack, and search for or select PTO by Roots
Holidaysfrom the dropdown menu
Bulk Add By Region
We get it — life gets busy. So busy, in fact, that you may need a little nudge to consider taking time off to recharge. PTO by Roots allows you to subscribe (and unsubscribe) to a monthly prompt, sent on the first working day of each month, reminding you to pause and think about time away from work and prioritizing mental health.
The reminder will read as follows.
Hi there! Have you thought about what days you may take off this month? 🌴⛰️ We want to make sure you stay healthy! If you feel like you can’t reasonably take time off, feel welcome to add this note to your next 1:1 with your manager and discuss further. Learn more about paid time off at GitLab:
To subscribe or unsubscribe, follow the below instructions and see an associated screenshot.
Appsin the menu bar within Slack, and search for or select PTO by Roots
Profilefrom the dropdown
Considering GitLab has a flexible time off policy, it is helpful to know who else on your team is out of office prior to requesting time. In order to see who is out of your team, follow the steps below:
Who's Out?from the dropdown list
new searchto view who is out by
You can request a new PTO by Roots feature by using the aforementioned
/pto-roots feedback command in Slack. If you receive feedback from the PTO by Roots team, or a new feature is implemented, please document the discussion in this GitLab issue. You can also create an issue in the People Group general project and ping CEO Kevin Corliss
@pto-ninja and CTO Doug Franklin
@doug17 for review.
If a OOO event is in progress:
overrideoption in Admin Tools and type the name of the team member you need to perform the override for.
If a OOO event has completed and synced to BambooHR:
overrideoption in Admin Tools and type the name of the team member you need to perform the override for.
[...]overflow menu on the righthand side of the screen.
To clarify, once the event has completed and synced to BambooHR, both the BambooHR and PTO by Roots events have to be deleted for the new correct event to be saved to BambooHR.
Managers have a duty to manage their direct reports wellbeing and ensure that time off is being taken. Sometimes, when working remotely from home, it can be hard to find a good work-life balance. It is also easy to forget that your team is working across multiple time zones, so some may feel obligated to work longer to ensure there is overlap. It is important that you check-in with your reports through one-to-ones, and if you think someone needs some time off, let them know they can do this.
For audit and compliance purposes, managers are responsible for ensuring that their team members track and communicate all time off using PTO by Roots as the single source of truth. Whether a team member is taking one day off, or 25+ calendar days off, all team members must use PTO by Roots.
For audit and compliance purposes, managers have a responsibility to be aware of their direct reports' statutory time off policies, as applicable in countries in which GitLab is the employer. Some countries require employers to ensure team members are taking time off, so it is recommended that managers review their direct reports' OOO time frequently, using the reports described in the section below. Managers do not need to understand the ins and outs of the policies; just that team member in specific country receives certain amount of days/year. The specifics of these policies (accrual maximums, rollover, accrual rates, etc) will still be managed within the People Ops team. Please feel free to reach out to
email@example.com with any questions.
If you discover that multiple people in your team want to be off at the same time, see what the priorities are, review the impact to the business, and use your best judgement. Discuss this with your team so you can manage the time off together. It is also a good idea to remind your team to give everyone an early heads-up, if possible, about upcoming vacation plans. Reminders can be sent in Slack, shared on a team calendar, or noted during team meetings.
If as a manager you are notified that your direct report has been incapacitated or unable to submit an OOO request in PTO by Roots and needs to take time off, be it Sick Time or otherwise, please document this information, and relay it to the People Connect Team at
firstname.lastname@example.org without disclosing private medical information in compliance with applicable privacy laws. The People Connect Team will submit an OOO request on the team members behalf and mark the reason as
Per Manager Name, and save the email thread in the team members
Sickness folder in Workday. This documentation will be unshared and will not contain any personal medical information.
Reporting from the PTO by Roots app helps managers:
PTO by Roots sends an automated report to managers like the one below at the beginning of every month:
Managers can also access the Reporting view at any time by using the dropdown menu in the Home tab of the PTO by Roots Slack app. Reports only show team members in their reporting tree - direct reports and below. When managers generate a report through the PTO by Roots app, they select a time frame. That timeframe can be anything - YTD, this past week, the upcoming quarter, etc. The
Total column will show what’s taken/scheduled to be taken during the timeframe selected.
Understanding the PTO that teams have taken, and plan to take, helps managers have conversations about burnout and burnout management with their direct reports. Below are common scenarios faced by managers than can be supported using PTO by Roots data.
email@example.com address the next steps to take in line with applicable law.
Friends and Familyin PTO by Roots.
Public Holidayin PTO by Roots.
Taking time off should be a chance for a team members to step away from work and we need each other's help to make that easier. PTO should not encourage people to cram work in before they leave or work extra hard upon their return in order to catch up.
It is important for us to take a step back to recognize and acknowledge the feeling of being "burned out". We are not as effective or efficient when we work long hours, miss meals or forego nurturing our personal lives for sustained periods of time. If you feel that you or someone on your team may be experiencing burnout, be sure to address it right away.
To get ahead of a problem, be sure to communicate with your manager if any of the following statements ever apply to you:
These and similar symptoms might get missed or dismissed, as people who are on the path to burnout, or who are burnt out, are usually unable to spend the mental energy to recognize it in themselves. Having an external source objectively identify the situation can be helpful. A great tool for objectively recognizing burn out is https://burnoutindex.org.
If someone is showing signs of burnout, they should take time off to focus on things that are relaxing and improve their overall health and welfare.
As a manager, it is your task to evaluate your team's state of mind. Address possible burnout by discussing options with your team member to manage contributing stressors and evaluate the workload. Some things to help with this:
Other tips to avoid burnout include:
Don't let burnout creep up on you. Working remotely can allow us to create bad habits, such as working straight through lunch to get something finished. Once in a while this feels good, perhaps to check that nagging task or big project off the list, but don't let this become a bad habit. Before long, you'll begin to feel the effects on your body and see it in your work.
Keep in mind that you are not alone! Chances are that you have a colleague who already experienced burnout or has been on the road to burnout. Schedule coffee calls with your team members or with anyone you'd like to talk to. Talk to your manager. If none of that is an option for you, schedule a coffee call with Marin.
Take care not to burn yourself out!
The following is a list of all statutory annual vacation entitlements by entity and country. Once the statutory amounts have been taken, team members can still make use of GitLab's Flexible time off policy.
Review above section
Statutory Minimum Vacation Time for questions around dates and amounts. Due to BambooHR's settings, it cannot automatically make some adjustments to the accruals. To keep these figures accurate we must perform some manual work.
In January, An automation will run to ensure no team members are rolling over a negative balance.
In June, An automation will run to ensure team member's PTO does not exceed 10 days in accordance with The Netherlands regulations.