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Do you know when your employees are taking their annual leave?

You’re a manager, it’s mid-summer and you’ve just had a lovely trip away with your family. You’re now back at work and a few holiday requests have come through from your team for later on in the year. You approve them instantly, happy with the fact you’re efficiently clearing the build-up of emails in your inbox.

As the weeks progress, more requests land and you approve them, passing the forms through to the HR department to input into their excel spreadsheet which you know you should have a look at soon, but haven’t quite managed to get round to it thus far as you have that pressing presentation to the board to think about.

The weeks run on and before you know it it’s that time of year again…..Festivities are due to begin! How did that come around so quickly? You have some time to spare and so look at who’s where over the month of December. And that’s when it dawns on you……The week before Christmas you are the only person in the department. How did this happen? How did you not notice? Surely you wouldn’t have approved all holiday for the same time? What are you going to do? You know two members of staff have flights booked, so there’s no way you can ask them to work.

At the end of the day, we’ve all done it when we haven’t got a comprehensive HR system in place whereby we can see an overview of annual leave across the entire department. Relying on spreadsheets and written forms will mean there’s always room for error. However, HR solutions enable managers to check resource before approving requests, at the touch of a button.

In fact, there’s a whole array of items you can search on to ensure you have sufficient staff in the office at particular times. This may include first aiders, French speakers, customer service operators – The list is endless. The point is, it’s imperative to have a handle on your department to ensure you’re not left high and dry and running a department all on your own….

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