Guest Blog – How Firebrand Training use CascadeGO

news article

Apr 24 2017

Employees are an organisation’s greatest asset, and businesses are increasingly recognising both the financial and human value in supporting, mentoring and engaging with their staff.

Today, hundreds of companies like Firebrand Training support their employees’ dreams and ambitions by offering paid sabbaticals. Whilst on sabbatical, employees can take an extended break from work to refresh and recharge, learn new skills, travel, or spend time with their families.

Firebrand Training – currently running a highly successful sabbatical scheme – use CascadeGO to manage their HR software needs, significantly reducing the impact and workload required from their HR team.

A great reward for great employees

Firebrand introduced their sabbatical scheme to reward long-term service, keep employee ideas fresh, and build and increase staff retention rates.

“We introduced Firebrand’s sabbatical scheme to reward staff for their years’ of service. We’re delighted with the results. It’s wonderful to see what people get up to. Relaxing, travelling, learning a new skill – whatever. They’ve earned the time off. We’ll miss them but they’ll be back…because their next one is only 5 years away.” says Robert Chapman, Managing Director of Firebrand Training.

Granted after 7 and 12 years service, Firebrand’s paid sabbaticals normally last around four weeks (in addition to yearly annual leave).

The scheme has proved immensely successful. Of the 23 ‘Firebrands’ who have taken sabbaticals, only one employee no longer works for the company. Plus, many of these employees are now eligible for their second sabbatical, due after 12 years of service.

An excellent adventure

Using CascadeGO, Firebrand has processed over 23 sabbaticals – that’s 460 days paid leave! However, it’s not all about the numbers – Firebrand encourages employees on sabbatical to pursue their dreams, resulting in some incredible stories:

  • Road tripping across America: Two Firebrand stalwarts took their sabbaticals together when they embarked on a massive road trip across America. Jeremy and Bernd also chronicled their trip in a blog, which was promoted internally, proving to colleagues that a sabbatical is more an adventure than just ‘time off’.
  • Quality family time: One Firebrand dedicated his sabbatical to his family. Krishna used his sabbatical to embark on a month-long trip to Sicily. As the first summer holiday Krishna could spend entirely with his family, this was an unmissable opportunity that only a sabbatical could provide.
  • A second road trip: Not to be outdone, and partly inspired by Jeremy and Bernd, a second Firebrand couple ventured to the US for an entire month. Highlights included boating through New Orleans swampland and watching baseball in New York.

How does CascadeGO help? 

Firebrand Training have used CascadeGO since 2011. Before that, booking annual leave was largely spreadsheet- based, with requests emailed to HR manually, and then forwarded to line managers for approval.

By incorporating CascadeGO’s intuitive HR software, Firebrand not only cut the workload for their HR staff, but also greatly reduced the opportunity for human error. Utilising intelligent and flexible HR software also helped to free up the HR team’s time to focus on more strategic tasks for the good of the wider business.

Firebrand will continue to support its successful sabbatical scheme with the appropriate help from CascadeGO. With more employees than ever looking to find a balance between their personal and professional lives, offering a sabbatical is now a competitive advantage when it comes to attracting, and retaining, top talent.

If you would like further information as to how CascadeGO could help you to efficiently manage your HR needs, click here.


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Cascade HR is a well-established, award-winning provider of fully-integrated HR and payroll software. The company is renowned as much for its quality of project management and ongoing customer service levels, as it is its dynamic technology. Over 


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