Time management is an important part of any job. Whether you work in senior management or you’re an entry-level employee, you’re expected to manage your time accordingly to make sure work is completed and deadlines are met. If you supervise one or more employees, you’re also responsible for monitoring their hours. In some work environments, this may require documenting when employees arrive and depart; however, every manager needs to be aware of when their reports will be in and out of the office, especially in advance. This requires the creation and consistent use of a time off request form.
Understanding Time Off
As a manager, knowing the schedules of your direct reports is essential for planning work. You need to ensure that there will be sufficient workers present to take care of responsibilities and maintain work objectives in a particular period. This would be impossible if employees were to take time off without prior notification to and approval from management. Whether the break is due to an unforeseen issue or planned well in advance, a time off request form is essential to formalize the process. This makes sure that requests are documented and registered as part of larger business processes such as human resources, accounting, scheduling, compensating, and forecasting. This form should be made available to everyone in the organization to facilitate submitting, reviewing, approving, and recording requests.
Implementing a Time Off Request Form
The creation and deployment of a time-off form should account for the size and hierarchy of your company. If requests only need to be approved and saved at the local or office level, a printable time off request form may be sufficient. Workers should be able to easily retrieve and complete this form, obtain approval, and submit it to the appropriate persons. A larger organization and/or one that requires sign-off from members in different offices or time zones may find that an electronic time off request form is more conducive to smooth operations. Depending on the needs of your company or office, an electronic form can be digitally completed and routed to various signatories, as necessary.
Determining the Features of a Time Off Request Form
A consistent request form is critical for an organization. It should be complete and provide as much information as possible as a working document that has implications on compensation and invoicing. There are local, state, and federal labor laws that dictate how companies should account for tracking the hours worked by their employees.
Your employee leave request form should have the following information:
- Employee Information: At a minimum, the form should include the name of the person requesting time off of work. An electronic form should also note an employee ID number, if applicable, to make sure the request is attributed to the right employee.
- Date Information: The request should note the date of the request, especially if there’s a minimum or maximum period between the request and the proposed break. The form should also have dates associated with approval or signatories.
- Applicable dates: A time-off request should be as clear as possible on the applicable days. The requestor should indicate the start date, the end date, the starting hour, the ending hour, the total number of hours and days off, and the date of return to the office. This facilitates review and approval.
- Reason: It’s important to note the reason for the time off through the use of categories. Funding for the days or hours off will depend on the purpose of the break. For example, your organization would likely pay for vacation out of an employee’s accrued paid time off or PTO reserve, while funding for time off to perform jury duty or to sit for a work-related licensing exam would come from other sources.
- Requestor signature: The person making the request should acknowledge that the form is subject to review and approval with a signature and date.
- Reviewer approval: An employee leave or vacation request form template must note whether the time request has been approved or rejected with signatures and dates from the appropriate supervisors. There should be no ambiguity concerning the decision from upper management, and the request form should document the entire process from initiation to approval or rejection. Consider making sure that the role or function of the reviewer is also noted, especially if your organization has requirements about who is authorized to approve or deny PTO.
Distributing Time Request Forms
The time request process should be expedited as much as possible. It’s not fair or efficient for a request to be sitting on a supervisor’s desk or inbox, awaiting a response for longer than necessary. An electronic request system can be designed to immediately route requests to the proper signatories, providing notifications to make sure that each request is processed as quickly as possible. In such a system, your organization can decide on the amount of time needed for any reviewers to make a decision. That process can also notify other people who can approve or deny a request if a supervisor is unavailable. An electronic request system can also be accessed at any time and from any location.
Fluix is the solution to make your electronic time off request form objectives a reality for better time management and accounting. It is a customizable, lightweight, and powerful platform that can be scaled up or down, depending on your organizational needs. Applicants and reviewers have immediate access to this platform on their mobile devices and best of all, there’s no need for special operating systems or programming. See how Fluix can boost our business with a free trial today.
Manage Time-Off Requests Faster
- Instruct on a paid-time-off (PTO) policy
- Clearly communicate the protocols
- Enable staff to complete requests from any device