Summer, the vacation season, is almost here. For project and team managers, it’s the time when special attention is required to keep track of available resources and distribute workload.
When many employees are out of the office, it’s essential to record all absences accurately to understand who is at the desk. Companies choose various software solutions to be used as a vacation calendar that helps check who is out of the office today or on any of the future dates.
Determine Your Requirements
Specific requirements to a vacation planner may differ: they can include just keeping track of team members’ absences, or more sophisticated features like calculation of resulting balances and leave approval procedure. Some calendars also have an option of customizing the leave types. However, the most important requirement is the ability to review leave chart of the entire team, of specific departments, or personal leave calendar of an employee.
Vacation Tracking Solutions
Let’s see what humanity have invented so far to solve employee leave tracking problem. We will start from the traditional solutions and then move onto the newer ones:
Paper and Pencil
Believe it or not, but some people still write their employees’ vacation time and schedule with pen and paper. It is mainly true for such businesses as small local restaurants rather than an accounting firm. As for the pros – it is absolutely free, easy and requires no additional training. But the risks of such a sheet getting wet and torn or broken, or simply “disappearing” from the wall are too high. Not even mentioning zero security, no remote accessibility, no balances calculations, no tracking or reporting system whatsoever.
Many companies use Excel for accounting and general managing, so often they track employees’ leave times in there too. There are many tips and tricks for configuring a spreadsheet to display the vacation schedule chart of a team, or even to configure a vacation approval process. However, this tool basically was not designed for tracking employees’ absences, so the suggested workarounds are not always a handy way to manage absences. Even though Excel is free, your costs might even get higher because of the time wasted on configuring the spreadsheet and loads of manual entries. And as we all know, time equals money.
Google or Outlook Calendar
Some employers create group vacation calendars in Google or Outlook Calendars for tracking their workers’ absences. These online calendars are easy to use, they provide a convenient shared access and have a reliable cloud storage. But again, they were not meant for vacation tracking and approving and therefore lack some essential features such as leave balances calculation and leave request submission. It’s like yeah, you can use your fork to whisk the whites, but look – here is a mixer!
Vacation Calendar Software – A Simple Way To Track Absences
Special vacation calendar software is of more help than multi-purpose spreadsheet or calendar tools. Its main purpose is to smooth out the workflow and allow team managers to understand who is available for next dates, review the historical data on taken leaves and balance changes. Remote and shared access, security and simplicity and, most importantly, no more wasted time on managing leave requests – sounds awesome, right?
When choosing a vacation calendar tool, make sure it offers all options necessary for a smooth and simple absence management process. While showing all necessary details on the employees’ taken leaves and leave requests, the calendar should definitely have an uncluttered interface.
actiPLANS provides an easy way to review employees’ past, current and upcoming absences in a clear calendar view. The calendar interfaces of this tool contain necessary data on the taken and requested leaves: request approval status, balance changes related to the requests, users’ absence notes, and comments to leave requests and notes.
This way, vacation calendar software is a time-saver for HR, project and team managers, providing quick access to all leave data in teams’ and employees’ leave calendars and cutting down on time expenses for absence management in the company.