Most Popular Approaches to Creating and Processing Time Off Requests

Improve employee attendance

Even in today’s shaky job market when an increasing number of employees are reluctant to take their vacation days, requesting time off is still very much a common practice for businesses of any size.

Of course, it’s hard to imagine employees just not showing up to work without any notice whenever they need to take some time off. There have to be rules for them to follow, right? Well, there is usually no strict legislation regulating the leave time request procedure, so it falls to companies to establish their own guidelines in that department.

From Traditional to Convenient

Since every organization has its own set of rules for requesting time off, the requests themselves take different forms depending on the company, with varying degrees of convenience for the actual employee.

  • Printed forms. By far the most traditional (read: outdated) and arguably the least convenient way to request some leave time are the good old printed forms and letters. While certainly not without a certain bureaucratic charm, printing out a form, filling it out, filing it with half a dozen different departments, and praying that it doesn’t get lost under a pile of other paperwork on your manager’s desk sure doesn’t sound very fun.
  • Emails. A more direct and significantly less time-consuming way to request time off is to just send your manager and/or HR person an email. This increases your chances of receiving a timely reply, and spares you the trouble of having to deal with paperwork, but can be a bit difficult to keep track of, considering what a mess an average employee’s inbox is. With both emails and printed forms information on employees’ requests is commonly kept in an Excel spreadsheet or a separate HR system, which can help keep things organized, but could at times lead to some unfortunate mistakes associated with manual data entry.
  • Leave time software. And then there’s actiPLANS – an affordable software solution dedicated entirely to streamlining the time off request and approval process. The whole thing becomes as easy as selecting a date, choosing the type of leave you’d like to take, and pressing a button to send the request to your manager. With a very user-friendly web version and a free mobile app, it allows you to request vacation time from pretty much anywhere, eliminating the frustrating steps and saving you valuable time.


Requesting leave time should not be an exercise in frustration. Unfortunately, the more conventional methods such as printed forms and emails are often just that. With actiPLANS, however, you can solve that problem in just a few clicks. Less paperwork, less time wasted, and more time spent actually enjoying your well-deserved time off.

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