An East Anglian firm that started a test policy of unlimited holiday earlier this year had confirmed that it will make the scheme permanent.

Ashton KCJ announced in February it wanted to trial a policy which scrapped annual leave allowances and let salaried employees take holiday ‘reflecting their own needs’. The idea has already been implemented at the likes of Netflix and Virgin but is believed to be the first time it has been applied at a legal services provider.

The firm today confirmed that after a nine-month trial the policy will become a permanent feature of its benefits package.

Chief executive Edward O’Rourke said staff productivity had gone up in the first six months of the financial year compared to the same time last year.

‘We firmly believe that law firms wishing to thrive in the future need to be innovative, both in the way they attract and retain legal talent and in the way in which they meet clients’ legal needs,’ he said. ‘Our focus needs to move towards overall productivity, client satisfaction and results rather than the number of holiday days taken.’

Ashton said the policy also includes a new approach to compassionate leave for bereavement and study leave for those enhancing their professional skills. The firm said employees had taken a mixed approach to the new approach, with some staff taking more leave than last year since February, and others taking ‘a little less’.

Ashton employs 320 people at six offices across Suffolk, Norfolk and Cambridgeshire.