Updated: May 17
For many HR professionals, annual leave management is a frustratingly big part of their job. In an already hectic workload the need to track employees’ time off, respond to leave requests, manage minimum staffing levels, set and enforce annual leave policies, and work out pro-rata entitlements for new starters can develop into a real time sink. There are a few approaches to handling this workload:
Keep really good paper records
This is the old school method, and many people are really good at it, the problem is that it is time and labour-intensive. Especially for a large, multi-site organisation, the sheer volume of paperwork required to properly manage annual leave is mind-boggling.
On top of this there is no way to easily call up reports to see how much leave an employee has taken, or to check on the impact of staff absence, these things must be done by hand.
Create a leave management spreadsheet
A well created spreadsheet resolves many of the problems of a paper-based annual leave solution. If you know what you’re doing it’s possible to write formulas that will effectively automate tasks such as tracking remaining entitlement or calculating pro-rata allowances. An advanced Excel user will even know how to generate reports showing absence patterns or to flag up leave periods that go against company policy.
The drawback of a spreadsheet-based system is that it stands alone. Leave requests come in on paper or by email and must then be co-ordinated between team managers, HR, and the employee. It also takes time, skill, and effort to create and update the spreadsheet itself.
Use annual leave management software
By far the most effective method HR professionals use for managing annual leave is to use annual leave management software. This software can perform calculations of allowances for you, and most packages will also allow for easy generation of reports. Using specialist software also allows you to move towards a paperless annual leave management system, saving on storage space and reducing administration overheads.
Unfortunately, most annual leave management software is of the “off the shelf” variety. Designed on a one-size-fits all principle, typical packages will be based around a single set of employment law, usually either American or British, with little to no ability to customise. Often these software packages are originally developed to meet the needs of a single large multinational client, before being made available to other businesses. This can leave you trying to fit a square peg into a round hole with software that makes your life easier, but doesn’t really meet your needs.
Using one of these three methods will give you a solution that is good enough, taking some of the pressure off your annual leave management. In fact, though, there is a fourth option:
Move past ‘good enough’ with LeaveWizard’s annual leave management software
At LeaveWizard we believe that the ability to customise your annual leave management software should be available to all of our customers. Our fully customisable, intuitive interface can handle multiple rule sets, as well as allowing customisable teams, easy-to-use automatic reporting, and seamless integration with employee and management-facing apps to provide paperless applications, approvals, and tracking for annual leave.
Our online platform also includes tools to assist you with absence management, including external indicators such as the Bradford Factor, helping you stay on top of sickness patterns and boost productivity. And with our automation you don’t need to worry about reminding employees how much entitlement they have left, or nagging managers to approve requests, automatic email reminders make sure nothing falls through the cracks.
We believe that LeaveWizard is the most effective annual leave management tool for HR professionals, but you don’t have to take our word for it. You can take a free no-obligation 30 day trial to experience it for yourself, or contact us to talk about your company’s needs.