Tracking employee leave in a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet or Google Sheet template is common when small businesses are just starting out and resources are often at their most strained. Although tracking paid time off in a spreadsheet seems like a convenient, cost-effective way to manage salaried employee time off requests at first, after some time, its time-consuming limitations become apparent:
- Scalability: As an organization grows and more employees are hired, keeping track of who has access to your PTO ledger becomes more difficult. Managing the view and edit rights to a time off Excel template as employees are onboarded – and terminated – can become a manual, onerous task, and contingency plans need to be in place in the case of sudden illness or departure of administrators.
- Accountability: Excel templates may not have an audit history that shows which changes were made by which team members at which time.
- Manual error: Human errors are relatively common in manual spreadsheet entry, leading to discrepancies between what PTO was requested and what PTO ends up being recorded in vacation tracker templates and worksheets.
- Poor Visibility & Analysis: It becomes difficult to generate accurate analytics and reports on employee time off requests as fields must be painstakingly input into a tracking spreadsheet one by one, which could lead to incorrect calculations or missed opportunities for employees to use their time off over timeframes such as a fiscal year, pay period, or quarter cycle.
- Limited Accessibility & Collaboration Tools: Standard leave tracker templates usually require that all stakeholders have access rights to view them at any given moment with no easy integration between other systems like payroll systems and human resources management software platforms. This limits cross-departmental collaboration on different types of leave and details like vacation days, accrual metrics, public holidays, sick leave, or other PTO.
- Lack of Automation & Alerts: Spreadsheet templates do not automatically alert admins when employee PTO requests come in, nor can they easily send out notifications for approval/denial status updates without manually entering relevant information into each row of the spreadsheet.
Fortunately, Planleave has solutions in place to mitigate each of these challenges through our comprehensive PTO tracking software. Benefits include the ability to:
Prioritize employee vacation and leave
Needing to walk back previously approved PTO requests due to a lack of organization within your tracking template and chosen employee vacation tracker can put administrators in precarious situations, where relationships can be heavily strained over an avoidable error. Not only that, but noncompliance with time off policies connected with FMLA can lead to huge penalties. Having a PTO tracker like Planleave ensures that these errors are minimized by giving administrators full visibility of all time off within the organization while allowing you to truly prioritize the benefit of paid time off to your employees – from sick days to vacation time and everything in between. Your staff will also appreciate having an automated method of requesting their time off while gaining peace of mind that their days out of the office are in good hands via a proven vacation tracker.
Streamline time off requests
Leave management software such as Planleave simplifies the process of tracking and approving employee vacation requests. When compared to manual tracking templates, having a dedicated platform to rely on offers a more efficient and organized way of managing vacation requests. Automated notifications are sent to admins whenever a request is received, and can also be sent out when the status of a request changes, so that all stakeholders are aware in real-time. Additionally, having employee time off tracked in one system makes it easier to generate accurate analytics around time off use and employee absences, including the ability to compare utilization across departments or teams over different time periods.
Optimize time tracking for everyone involved
PTO trackers such as Planleave optimize the tracking of employee vacation requests for all users involved by enhancing the entire process. It facilitates access to real-time data and PTO policies, serves as an evergreen communication tool to showcase public holidays and the number of days any employee has available for PTO, and ensures that everyone has full visibility into who is taking time off and when. Planleave also makes it easy for stakeholders to collaborate on employee cases such as vacation requests or extended medical leaves, as relevant information can be easily shared with all relevant parties in order for a decision to be made quickly and efficiently. This increases efficiency by removing manual data entry requirements that come with spreadsheets and templates, thus reducing errors and freeing administrators from having to constantly monitor time tracking processes and accrual metrics. Furthermore, analytics can be generated that compare utilization across departments or teams over different periods of time – this allows for more strategic decisions about time off use and helps establish better guidelines around company policies and protocols. Ultimately, management software allows you to focus your time and resources on what matters the most: the value that your business provides.
Try Planleave Today
While manually tracking time off in a spreadsheet template or timesheet is a laborious, time-intensive process, that’s not even the worst of it: miscommunications can cause catastrophic errors that can put employees, managers, and business owners in difficult spots. Using time off request management software such as Planleave can help to streamline the workflow process of tracking and approving employee vacation requests as they come in. This not only increases visibility into who is taking time off and when, but it also helps enhance your operations by removing manual data entry requirements and simplifying collaboration among stakeholders. Start your free trial of Planleave now to see if it’s the perfect solution for you, your team, and your business.