You depend on your employees showing up and working hard to accomplish your organization’s business priorities. Paid vacation is a great perk, but when not managed well can result in all kinds of headaches and hassles, throwing off the timelines of important projects, creating gaps in productivity that are hard to make up, and generally causing more stress than you need in your work life.

If you’ve ever been in the situation where multiple employees have managed to all request vacations for the same time period, you can have a pretty intense situation on your hands. If they’re all hardworking employees, they deserve their paid time off, but you can’t let all of them go at the same time. These kinds of conflicts are inevitable, and it seems like one or more employees is bound to feel like they’re getting the short end of the deal.

The good news is that there are things you can do to reduce and manage these kinds of headache-inducing situations. It begins with realizing that you simply can’t expect to please everyone all of the time. That said, you want to be seen as fair if not generous in terms of approving vacation requests.

Most organizations have spelled out their policies around the process for requesting vacation time, including how far in advance employees need to make their requests. It’s important that these policies and procedures are made clear to employees during the recruiting, hiring and onboarding phases. Even though someone might get a great deal on last-minute tickets for their dream vacation, they need to understand it might not be possible to grant such last-minute requests if others have already scheduled their vacation times.

Put the responsibility in the employee’s hands in terms of working with their immediate supervisor and colleagues to come up with a plan for how their duties will be covered in their absence. This forces employees to be in touch their peers and can give an early warning to potential conflicts as they discuss mutual schedules.

Something else you can do is offer generous incentives in the form of bonuses or other perks to employees who agree to work during the most popular vacation times of the year, or during periods that are the most critical to your company’s productivity schedule.

Perhaps one of the most important things you can do is empower employees in vacation scheduling by adopting a robust online leave management system like CaptureLeave. After setup, it allows employees to view a calendar and file their vacation request for your approval. The calendar function lets you easily see all company holidays and scheduled vacations by department at a glance, which helps you make the best decisions around vacation requests. Explore this website, view the video demo, or start a free trial account to see what CaptureLeave can do for you!

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