Cheap flights and package tours are now leading to employees going on vacation all year round. For employers, this means organizing vacation replacements. Because while employees are discovering foreign countries or enjoying their gardens at home, the business doesn’t stand still. But with early planning and a well thought out staff leave management, nothing can go wrong.
Top tips to manage employee holiday time off
Companies should start planning their vacation for the new year well in advance. This requires a lot of time and skill to ensure the interests of employees on the one hand and a smooth process in the company on the other. With this checklist, you can avoid potential conflicts when planning vacations in your company.
- Communicate the solution
- Public list
- Communicate absence in advance
- Check before approving
- Inform colleagues and externals
- The handover
Communicate the solution
At least in your department, but preferably in the entire company, employees should know the regulations for vacation replacement. For example, if everyone knows that the office colleague will replace the absent employee on vacation, the contact person is immediately identified. Communicate the solution early on.
In addition, a publicly viewable list helps to provide an overview of upcoming vacations. For example, save a file with your employees and their respective representatives for all to see. Include contact information as well.
Communicate absence in advance
Especially with externals, you should also talk in advance. In this way, many things can be arranged and taken care of in the weeks before the vacation. The substitute for the absence has less work as a result and is also prepared to step in in the future. This also allows the colleague to better organize in advance for the vacation replacement.
Check before approving
When approving an absence, check to see if leave substitutions have been cleared. Do the requests of related employees overlap? Is there already a job posting? Can labor laws be met with a maximum of ten hours of work per day? If there are still questions, clarify them with the applicant.
Inform colleagues and externals
It is true that employees talk among themselves about their absences. Nevertheless, some precautions should be taken. Emails should mention another contact person in an automatic reply. The telephone should be diverted to the substitute. A note on the desk stating the absence is also a good idea. If someone just wants to drop something off quickly, they can contact the substitute.
The happy traveler hands over his tasks and projects to the vacation replacement. All important facts should be clarified. What is due and when? Where are there still unanswered questions? What happens in case of an emergency? Who are internal and external contacts? What has priority? Your employees should make a binding appointment with each other for this.
What are the options for vacation replacement?
If possible, the organization of vacation replacement should not be implemented only when the employee goes on vacation. Instead, you should think about how a staff management for vacations can basically look like.
- Internal employee
- External employees
- Hiring employees for the transition
- Hire a temporary employee
- Book a telephone or secretarial service
Substitution by colleagues is the simplest method. It makes sense when employees are away for a few days or weeks. This arrangement can then also be applied to sick days. Especially colleagues from the same department or even the same office are suitable as vacation substitutes, because colleagues know the work and the processes.
Table neighbors hear a lot from their colleagues and talk about projects.
- Office colleagues notice when someone is looking for the absent person.
- Colleagues from one department are usually professionally suitable.
- They are often loyal to each other and represent each other.
- Instead of specific contacts, a minimum number of people present is also conceivable.
For a longer absence over several weeks or months, you should think about new or external employees. Especially when employees take unpaid leave, such an arrangement for vacation replacement can be useful. Depending on the duties of the absentee, different solutions are suitable for the replacement period.
Hiring employees for the transition
To do this, you need to place a job advertisement in good time and prepare for an application process. When doing so, remember to communicate the temporary nature of the position from the beginning. You can also ask temporary employment agencies.
Hire a temporary employee
A temporary employee works fewer hours a week. Nevertheless, he or she performs tasks that do not require any special introduction or qualification. A student job is also conceivable or a search through a temporary employment agency. How many hours are necessary depends entirely on the job.
Book a telephone or secretarial service
This is especially suitable if it is mainly a matter of passing on information. With such services not only vacation replacements can be organized, but also bottlenecks in the company.
Conclusion – Staff leave management doesn’t have to be difficult
With a well thought out staff leave management and sufficient information for colleagues and externals, organizing vacation replacements is a no-brainer.