Bringing annual leave procedures up to date

With the summer holiday season well and truly approaching, your company might already have fallen foul of the many problems caused by out-of-date and inefficient holiday booking procedures.

Annual leave entitlement

A common problem from inexperienced companies without a specialised HR and accounts system is problems working out what the holiday entitlement is for their employees.

The statutory minimum entitlement for annual leave, except for staff who work irregular hours, is 5.6 weeks. This is calculated using their usual working week, so for example someone working 5 days a week needs to be allotted at least 28 days. A part-time employee who works 3 days a week will need at least 16.8 days of holiday.

Even if your department is armed with this information, it is all too easy for a typo to result in an incorrect annual leave allotment, while a computer system will sort this automatically.

You may well wish to give employees more than the statutory minimum; for example, if you wish to reward loyalty with yearly increases in entitlement. (It is widely considered unwise to give extra holiday days to one or two employees without a very clear transparent structure for how all employees can similarly earn more days.)

Software can come in handy here to automatically update employees’ records with their new extra day. Otherwise, there is a clear risk of the extra day getting overlooked thanks to administrative burdens and backlogs until the employee complains.

Annual leave clashes

Another common holiday booking issue is when more than one employee wants to take the same day off. Usually the counter for this is to operate a first-come, first-served policy, but this can cause friction in situations where holiday requests aren’t instantly applied to a centralised system.

Imagine this scenario:

One employee tells a manager about a specific day they would like to take as annual leave and the manager make a note of it somewhere to add it to the system when they next have time. This then gets forgotten about in the daily hurry of work.

Two days later, another employee asks for the same holiday day, this time while the manager is on their computer and has a spare five minutes. The manager checks the central system – ‘Oh, that looks fine, I’ll put that on for you’.

The first employee would be understandably furious.

Having an automatic holiday requests/approval system will remove the possibility of situations like this from ever happening.

To make your holiday procedure stress-free, you need the annual leave features of our time and attendance system. Please do get in touch for prices or with any questions you  might have!