Employee absence management is a cumbersome task when handled across paper-based documents, spreadsheets and emails.
Using these methods is lengthy, time-consuming and prone to human error.
With that in mind, the spread of COVID-19 has made employee absence management even more agonizing. That is, for administrative staff, HR managers and even employees. And, it is only expected to get worse.
Leave requests and employee absences spike during COVID-19 Pandemic
The global spread of the Coronavirus has amounted huge pressures on professional as well as personal lives.
Many employees have faced a new working environment with their office in their homes. On the other hand, some employees have had limited options regarding working from home or working at all.
Millions of people across the world have been directly affected by COVID-19 from contracting the deadly virus. Deeming them medically unfit to work, ill-related absences have risen. Not to mention, the amount of people waiting to be tested and in self-isolation, also unable to work.
In addition, occupational roles that require physical presence unfortunately cannot implement working from home. Because of this, many workers have had no other choice but to avail of annual leave or temporary time-off. That is, under specified circumstances.
For example, many front-line staff depend on childcare facilities in order to go to work. With restrictions in place and no creches or schools open, significant amounts of essential workers have had to stay at home. This has created both shortages of staff, as well as a substantial increase of leave requests.
Administrators and HR managers have had to bear with these demands as a consequence of employees being directly and indirectly affected by the virus.
On top of these causes of employee absences, there are general leave requests. For example, maternity and paternity leave, bereavement leave, sick leave unrelated to COVID-19 and others.
Leave dedicated to holidays or vacations is usually the most common type of annual leave. However, with various restrictions across the world, employees are ‘saving’ their annual leave days.
Leave requests expected to plummet after COVID-19 restrictions are lifted
Worldwide, most mass gatherings, events and holidays have been cancelled. And, regardless, many countries have legally obliged people to stay indoors unless they are out for essential travel.
With nowhere to go and nobody to see, people have no essential reason to take annual leave for pleasure purposes.
Looking forward to overcoming the Pandemic, employees are optimistic about a sunny getaway before the year is up. This is expected to have a knock-on effect for business operations in two ways.
1) Overflowing of leave requests, giving administrators and HR managers additional paperwork.
2) Shortages of staff if approved, depending on managers approval.
Employers are becoming overwhelmed with possibility of employees submitting requests for the same time periods. Hence, it is important to utilise the most appropriate system to manage employee absences and leave requests.
To be specific, organisations using paper-based systems is going to make the leave requests an even more complex process.
Also, the deferral of annual leave in bulk will create an additional problem for companies if approved. The lack of employees post COVID-19 will inevitably strain business operations.
With a robust leave management system, you can prepare for employee absences. In short, managers can track and monitor how many employees are absent to ensure there is enough workers to sustain business.
Digital transformation is reconstructing how companies carry out business processes.
In particular, digital transformation can convert leave management from a laborious, painful task, to an easy, efficient digital process. That is, with business process automation tools, such as workflow software.
Streamline leave and absence management with digital leave request process
Paper documents and spreadsheets are considerably the main tools used to handle employee leave requests and absences. While these methods can get the job done, they soak up a great deal of employee time.
Before a request even receives approval, administrators need to fill out a form and assign it to several people across other departments. And, manually submitting documents makes collaboration harder to achieve.
It is important for employee leave requests and absences to reach all relevant people involved. And to do so, quickly. Ideally, accepting or approving requests works best when done instantly after receiving them.
However, sometimes this is simply not possible. Managers need to make sure that there are enough employees to sustain business as usual. In addition, using paper forms for annual leave or absences is certainly not reliable.
Paper documents can easily get lost, the form could have a mistake or wrong information or it could land on the wrong persons desk. Similarly, a digital file could also end up in the wrong folder on a PC or sent to the wrong email address.
Human error is inevitable. You might have highly skilled and intelligent staff, but these are simple and common mistakes that are easy to make.
Because of these issues, the approval process is pro-longed and requests can pile up. As a result, the task becomes difficult and confusing. On the other hand, with the correct tools, managing leave and absences can be a breeze.
A manager needs to be in a position to react fast to prevent bottlenecks and delays in approvals.
Business process automation platform can swiftly transform leave requests from a paper-based system to a digital process. With a digital leave management system, employers can better manage employee leave requests and absences.
Overall benefits of automating management of employee leave and absences
These key features of digital leave request form will ease the process for administrators, managers and HR teams. But, that’s not all, there are overall benefits to the efficiency of your business.
1- Customisable dashboards
With customisable built-in dashboard, managers can track and monitor numbers of requests and approvals. In short, the dashboard provides a transparent overview of the number of employees that are on leave or absent. As a result of improved visibility, HR teams and managers can make better decisions when carrying out approvals.
2- Request modifications
Managers can even request employees to modify their request if necessary. The manager might suggest altering the date. This reduces lack of required staff or employee shortages, allowing business operations to sustain.
3- Scheduled reminders
Automated emails are sent to the manager if approvals or rejections are not completed on time. This allows teams to not let any requests go unnoticed and prevents delays and a build-up of requests. Because of this, administrators don’t get an uncontrollable overload of work. As well, employees are better satisfied as they are not waiting around for approvals or answers.
4- Calculate annual leave days
The digital holiday/leave request form automatically calculates employees remaining days of annual leave. Therefore, there is no need for either an employee to keep track of their annual leave days. Managers also don’t need to manually keep a record by tracking, calculating and inputting data into spread sheets and so on.
Why you should use a workflow software for employee leave management
Managing leave and absences using traditional methods is laborious and drains resources such as time, money and technically human resources. By dedicating so much time to this process, it costs your business money that can be saved.
On the other hand, using workflow software to streamline employee leave requests and handle absences can bring efficiency to your business. All three factors, time, money and human resources can be retained by implementing a digital solution.
The COVID-19 epidemic postponed many holidays and vacations for people around the world. But, normality will return soon. Meaning, employees will be eager to getaway once restrictions are lifted.
Kianda’s digital leave request form will allow you to eliminate risk of human error and speed up the entire process.
Prepare for your employee’s leave requests. Avoid the administrative burden by transforming your employee leave management system with Kianda no-code workflow software.
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