IceHrm Looking for an HR software for Your Company?
Masha Masha is a content developer at IceHrm. You can contact her at masha[at]

The Substantial Cost Associated With Inadequate Leave Management

  Reading Time:

Holidays are often taken for granted in companies; once you've got a framework in place, it tends to work itself out - doesn't it? Increasingly, however, there is evidence that the costs of not taking the holiday process into account are much greater than most companies are aware of.

Depending on the industry, poor vacation management can literally mean the difference between life and death. It was revealed that 300,000 extra major operations could be carried out in the UK every year if surgeons were better at organizing their holidays. It is now recommended a 6-4-2 model: arrange holidays six weeks in advance, send out the surgery lists four weeks in advance and double-check the lists two weeks before the operation.

Even in industries where the effort is not quite as high, poor holiday performance can have major consequences for both productivity and profit margins. So how do you avoid the holiday becoming a burden for the company? Here are some of our expert tips:

1. Establish clear guidelines for holiday wishes - with deadlines

One of the main challenges identified in the NHS Improvement study was the effect of staff taking leave at short notice. By establishing guidelines, not only for how much holiday the employees are allowed to take, but also for how long in advance they must give notice, this problem can be reduced.

There may be a need to make exceptions to the rules, and that is perfectly fine in some cases, but many companies find that informal holiday processing leads to employees making use of the flexible systems. The best solution may therefore be to adopt an online holiday management system that formalises the process and encourages the employees to take the structure seriously.

2. Make it easy for the employees to see who is free at all times

Another major burden on the company's productivity is that several employees are on holiday at all times. Especially during holidays such as school holidays and in the summer, it is often the case that several people in a department have time off at the same time, without them discovering it until they do not come to work.

This is another argument for establishing a formal leave management process that is controlled by a web-based software. If requests are approved and logged via a central portal that all employees have access to, they can quickly see if someone is already on holiday when they want to take time off.

Along with clear deadlines for when vacation must be booked, the HR team or management has plenty of time to double-check who already has time off before approving vacation requests.

3. Faster approval and editing process

Errors often creep in when managers have to go through administrative processes when they are already busy. If your company has a manual, paper-based leave management system, chances are you've experienced someone losing a form in a drawer, or calendar clashes when people are working on different versions of the same spreadsheet.

By switching to a web-based solution for leave management, you remove all these margins of error and create a simple and clear approval process for senior employees. Whether it is an HR team or the individual line manager who is responsible for approving vacation, a digital platform ensures that they receive alerts and reminders when a request is sent, and that an automatic response is sent to the relevant team member when the application is approved or declined.

4. Prepare the rest of the workforce to support planned absences

The surgical example shows that it is not necessarily the fact that people take vacation that causes problems for organizations, but that it is the consequences of poor planning for when people are absent. With a better structure for absence management in place, you have plenty of time to prepare.

One of the most important advantages of a central holiday management platform is that you can immediately see who will have time off during the year. This means that the management can sit down month by month, look at the availability of the employees and distribute the workload accordingly.

For some companies, this will improve shift planning considerably. For example, if you have customer service teams in retail or call centers, you will avoid accidentally assigning a shift to someone who has booked time off.

Even in office environments, a full overview of the holiday plans can make it easier to manage projects. You can also help the employees to prepare handovers for the period they will be away from the office, so that you can ensure a continuous work standard.

In conclusion, effective leave management is crucial for organizational success, preventing disruptions, and ensuring optimal productivity. Implementing a robust system, such as IceHrm, streamlines processes and helps avoid costly consequences.

Is It a Waste of Time to Send Personalized Messages to Candidates?

AI can analyze candidate information, including role, company, career path, and interests, to create relevant communication and foster a responsive mindset....

Top 5 Reasons HR Should Adopt Leave Management Systems

Discover the five key advantages of adopting IceHrm's leave management system for HR teams, enhancing efficiency and compliance in leave-related processes....

IceHrm   Create your IceHrm, installation today.