Even though here in Michigan it’s hard to tell it’s July, (we are still toting around sweatshirts and snow scrapers in the trunks of our cars) a glance around the office may suggest otherwise. Desks are vacated in the middle of the week, various travel agency websites are favorites in web browsers, and more than one employee can be caught dreaming about sleeping on the beach without a stack of papers to flip through. Regardless of the cooler temperatures, it’s obvious employees are taking advantage of the summer months and PTO.
However, though enjoying PTO can be a relaxing endeavor, the process of requesting it off can be quite the opposite. Requests are often lost, missed, or forgotten about. Employees pester HR until they half-heartedly grant requests before checking. Unfortunately, sometimes the relaxation of a day off is simply recuperation for the effort it took to get there in the first place.
Thankfully, however, online processes are using three simple features to turn the nightmare of leave management into just another poolside day dream.
Online leave management can significantly lower the annoyance levels in any business. To an individual employee, asking supervisors how much PTO they have left and whether or not a request has been granted may not seem like a time-consuming task. However, when a supervisor oversees 20 employees doing the same thing, it suddenly becomes much more than a “simple favor.”
With online leave management, employees can automatically view how much PTO they have remaining at any time and the software’s cloud-based system keeps an accurate running total that automatically adjusts to any pending requests. On the flipside, supervisors are immediately notified of any requests and can view notes from employees explaining why they need time off.
Employees are also notified via email as soon as their supervisor has approved or denied their request. This lessens the temptation for employees to repeatedly badger supervisors about requests— a practice that often results in annoyance for supervisors. Supervisors have many things they need to accomplish; being continually pestered about a shopping trip to Chicago only adds unnecessary stress.
Sometimes for employees, the process of requesting time off is inconvenient, thus making a quick text, email, or conversation in passing a temptingly convenient way to request PTO. While this may be initially easier for both parties, this method also creates significant room for miscommunication. Switching to online leave management eliminates many of these potential problems—and subsequently simplifies a supervisor’s daily tasks. Requests, approvals, and denials can be made anytime and anywhere, so long as there’s available internet. No longer does HR have to suffer through a constant flow of verbal requests that can easily be forgotten about, nor do employees have to spend extra time going through a tedious process just to take a day off.
This also opens up the door for potential last-minute requests. Though companies may have policies asking employees to notify supervisors of requests 2-3 weeks in advance, online leave management could allow an employee to be granted time off in less than 24 hours. If an employee suddenly wants to take a day off, all they have to do is submit the request, give an explanation, and wait for email verification.
It’s time to throw out the wall calendars, spreadsheets, and paper requests and sink further into the convenience of digital technology. Online leave management stores requests in a clean and secure environment, making PTO requests accurate, simple, and clutter-free. (Not to mention, with less space needed for PTO sign-ups, the break room billboard will have more room for company updates, product changes, and motivational cat posters.)
Instead of complex processes that involve form requests and follow-ups, online leave management puts all request information in one location, accessible by all involved parties. There doesn’t have to be any face-to-face interaction between the supervisor and employee in the process—with a few simple clicks, time off is requested, then either approved or denied.
Employees can also double check to see if they remembered to request time off or not. Instead of tracking down the HR supervisor or locating the company calendar, all information is accessible and available in one simple location.
Packing it All Up
Requesting time off doesn’t have to be a pain—maximizing the utility of leave management software can be just as relaxing as the PTO itself (minus the sand and beach chair of course). Adding convenience, efficiency, and organization to the growing list of benefits this software offers, it’s clear that though Florida may require a suitcase, plane ticket, and layover in Tennessee, a stress-free leave management program is a click away.