June 10, 2021

Managing Employee Time-Off and Schedule Requests


Everyone needs a break sometimes – including your employees. Of course you want to accommodate their requests for time away from work, but managing a multitude of requests can be challenging. Here are a few things managers can do to help streamline the process of managing employee requests.

Clearly defined policies regarding time off will save time and hassles in the long run. If you have not already, establish a policy that addresses paid time off, personal time, vacation, and sick leave. Some organizations track these separately, while others categorize them together under the blanket of “Personal Time Off.” Determine the best approach for your company and clearly define your company’s rules and expectations. Communicate the details to new hires and provide a written copy of the policy to all employees. According to Business News Daily, a strong time-off policy should include:

  • Employee work hours
  • Paid and unpaid leave options
  • PTO accrual and rollover policies
  • Payment upon termination terms
  • Consequences for violations

Business News Daily also recommends the policy includes your company’s PTO request procedure, which covers the protocol for calling in sick, deadlines for submitting requests, and blackout policies. Some companies allow employees to request time off verbally, via email, or in writing. While this might work for small businesses, it can cause chaos for companies with more than a handful of employees. That is what Jared Hatchard and his team at Sun Life Pharmacy experienced when their staff was allowed to call or email in their requests.

“Schedule requests were often missed,” said Hatchard. “Not only was this frustrating for the staff, it also meant I was spending several hours per week making adjustments for time-off requests and callouts.”

Administrators at Sun Life Pharmacy implemented ScheduleAnywhere online employee scheduling software, which allows employees to submit cover, swap, and time-off requests online. Managers can quickly see whether a request conflicts with previously scheduled shifts before accepting or denying the request. This has eliminated the hassle of keeping track of requests and gives managers the ability to see who submitted the request and when.  The employee scheduling app keeps the team connected even when they are not at work. 

Time-off requests don’t have to be time consuming or difficult for administrators to manage. They also should not be a source of frustration for your employees. Learn more about how ScheduleAnywhere employee scheduling app makes schedule requests and shift swapping easy for managers and employees – while saving time and money.

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