5 Tips for Preventing Schedule Conflicts at Christmas Time

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Christmas holds a special place in many people’s hearts, as it is a time for gathering with loved ones, celebrating traditions, and creating cherished memories.

Most of us have personal and family expectations surrounding this holiday, including specific plans, gatherings, or trips and want to take time off during this festive season. This results in a high demand for leaves. So, coordinating schedules for Christmas can be challenging.

Leave conflicts disrupt business processes and add extra stress to holiday preparation.

In this blog post, we will consider the reasons and consequences of scheduling conflicts and offer some recommendations for preventing these.

Why Scheduling Conflicts Happen and What They Result in

Scheduling conflicts in a business can occur all year round, but their causes and implications are basically the same. And the good part is that most of them may be eliminated if properly addressed.

Cause #1. Lack of communication

When employees are unaware of each other’s availability or schedule changes, overlaps, and conflicts arise more often. They result in confusion, delays, and decreased productivity: tasks remain unfinished, deadlines are not met, and important meetings get canceled. The emotional attachment and sentimental value associated with Christmas intensify the frustration.

Cause #2. Inadequate staffing or resources

When there are not enough employees or equipment to meet a project’s or task’s demands, different workers or teams are forced to compete for the same resources.

Such unsound competition causes delays in project completion, compromised quality of work, increased stress on employees, and potential dissatisfaction among clients or customers.

At Christmas time, limited availability means that not everyone can be granted their preferred vacation dates, and missing out on spending time with loved ones or participating in meaningful traditions can be deeply disappointing.

Cause #3. Unexpected events or emergencies

When employees cannot fulfill their assigned tasks due to unexpected events, such as illnesses or accidents, it can impact the overall schedule.

Scheduling conflicts caused by unexpected events can result in delays, rescheduling, or reassigning of tasks. Because many employees leave long before the Christmas holidays, you may be unable to find a replacement for those needing an emergency PTO.

This can lead to increased workloads for other team members, and potential bottlenecks in processes and make meeting deadlines really tricky.

Cause #4. Overlapping priorities

In a dynamic work environment, employees often have multiple responsibilities and projects to handle simultaneously. Conflicts arise when these tasks have conflicting deadlines or require the same resources.

Overlapping priorities can cause employees to feel overwhelmed and compromise quality of work. This in turn will create tension among team members who may have conflicting interests or goals.

Cause #5. Inefficient scheduling practices

Poor scheduling practices, such as inadequate planning, lack of priority setting, or failure to consider individual workloads, are the key contributors to schedule conflicts.

Inefficient scheduling results in wasted time, burnout, decreased employee morale, and ultimately, reduced productivity. It also hurts the overall organizational culture, work environment, and festive mood.

5 Tips on Preventing Leave Clashes

To mitigate scheduling conflicts, businesses should focus on effective communication, proactive planning, adequate resource allocation, and considering the individual needs and workloads of employees.

Implementing reliable scheduling tools and promoting a culture of open communication will also significantly minimize scheduling conflicts and their negative consequences.

Here are some some ideas our HRs approved.

Maintain a centralized scheduling system. Use a shared calendar or scheduling software that allows everyone in the organization to access and update their schedules.

Scheduling system

Encourage employees to regularly review and update their schedules, mainly when changes occur. This ensures that everyone knows the most up-to-date information and reduces the chances of conflicts.

How actiPLANS can help

actipLANS provides a centralized platform for managing employee leave requests, allowing managers and employees to access and review leave schedules easily. This helps in identifying potential conflicts and finding suitable solutions.

actiPLANS also automates the leave request submission and approval, eliminating the need for manual paperwork or email exchanges. This ensures that requests are recorded accurately and in a timely manner, reducing the chances of conflicts due to miscommunication or missed requests.

Start your free 30-day trial today!

Monitor and manage resource allocation. Keep track of shared resources such as meeting rooms, equipment, or software licenses. Implement a system for reserving resources to avoid conflicts and ensure fair usage.

How actiPLANS can help
actiPLANS provides instant insights into employee availability. Managers can effectively allocate resources based on the leave schedules, preventing conflicts arising from insufficient staffing or resource availability.

Provide schedule visibility. Consider sharing an overview of team schedules or project timelines with relevant stakeholders. This helps everyone involved to have a holistic view of the schedule, minimizing conflicts and misunderstandings.

Encourage employees to review and update their schedules regularly, especially when changes occur. This ensures that everyone is aware of the most up-to-date information and reduces the chances of conflicts.

How actiPLANS can help
actiPLANS offers real-time visibility into employee leave statuses and availability. Managers can see who is on leave at any given time, allowing them to make informed decisions when scheduling tasks or projects.

The tool lets team members view each other’s leave schedules, fostering transparency and collaboration. This helps employees plan their schedules accordingly and avoid conflicts by adjusting their leave requests if needed.

Analyze historical data. Keep an eye on leave data to identify patterns and trends in employee leave requests. Identify peak periods when a significant number of employees tend to take leave simultaneously. Knowing these periods in advance, you can plan staffing and resources accordingly to minimize conflicts.

How actiPLANS can help
actiPLANS lets you reveal the departments or teams most affected by leave during specific periods, identify any disparities or imbalances in leave distribution among employees or teams, and more. These insights can help you encourage staggered leave schedules, ensuring adequate coverage and reducing the likelihood of conflicts.

Integrate a task manager into your scheduling software. Avoid overburdening specific individuals or teams with excessive workloads. Regularly assess and distribute tasks evenly, considering employees’ capacities and availability.

Allow buffer time between tasks or meetings to accommodate unexpected delays or emergencies. This provides flexibility in scheduling and helps prevent conflicts when unforeseen circumstances arise.

How actiPLANS can help
The integration between actiTIME and actiPLANS allows for real-time visibility into both employee availability and scheduled leave. Managers can easily see an employee’s planned leave alongside their assigned tasks and projects. Such visibility helps in identifying potential conflicts between leave schedules and project deadlines.

The integration facilitates seamless coordination between leave management and task/project management. Managers can assess the impact of an employee’s leave on ongoing tasks or projects, allowing them to proactively reassign work or adjust deadlines to prevent conflicts and maintain productivity.

Start your free 30-day trial today!


In conclusion, preventing and avoiding leave conflicts during Christmas is crucial for maintaining a harmonious work environment and ensuring smooth operations. With the right approach to planning, businesses can effectively manage employee leave and minimize scheduling conflicts during this festive period.

However, as the holiday season approaches, it’s high time to embrace the power of technology and introduce a system that allows employees to enjoy their well-deserved time off while ensuring that business operations continue seamlessly. With actiPLANS by your side, you can make this Christmas season joyful for everyone at your workplace.


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