It was management guru Peter Drucker who is most commonly attributed with the well-worn quote that “what gets measured gets managed,” although various people said similar things both before and after him. Ignoring the notion that sometimes you have to manage things that simply cannot be effectively measured is a useful approach. Measuring those things you need to manage makes everything more real, and paves the way to making SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely) goals. Applying this idea to employee time off tracking makes good business sense.
Time Off Tracking: The Many Forms of Employee Leave
Most people are aware of some of the more common forms of employee leave, but there are actually a surprisingly wide of range options out there in corporate America, including the following 20 forms of time off benefits:
- Vacation Time: Paid time off to spend in whatever way employees want.
- Personal Days: Paid days off work that employees need that aren’t related to being sick or taking vacation.
- Sick Time: Paid absences from work to receive medical care, recover from an illness or give care to a sick family member who needs care.
- Short-Term or Long-Term Disability: Paid absence from work when a medical condition, injury or other form of disability (including pregnancy) prevents an employee from being able to do their job.
- Holidays: Paid days off that coincide with widely recognized holidays, though there is variation between federal and state policies as well as at the individual company level.
- Floating Holidays: Holidays not widely recognized but which may be important to individual employees. Employees are free to use these paid holidays as desired.
- Sympathy Leave/Bereavement: Paid absences from work to deal with a death in one’s immediate family (spouse, children, parents, in-laws, grandparents, grandchildren, etc.)
- Pet Bereavement: Paid absence from work to deal with the death of a pet.
- Jury Duty: Paid leave so an employee can serve jury duty when called.
- Military Leave: Authorized absences from work to fulfill military duty and obligations, which may be partially paid and with assurances of restoring their position.
- Comp Time: Time off in lieu of being compensated for overtime worked.
- Maternity Leave: Post-birth time off for moms to be with their newborns.
- Paternity Leave: Post-birth time off for dads to be with their newborns
- Emergency Child Care Leave: Paid time off when an employee’s regular childcare option is suddenly not available, including school closures and cancellations.
- Community Service: Paid time off for an employee to participate in volunteer service opportunities, usually with a non-profit organization.
- Study/Sabbatical: Paid time off to pursue job-related education and/or professional development.
- Convention Leave: Paid time off to attend job-related conventions, conferences and seminars.
- Domestic Violence/Sexual Assault/Stalking Survivors Leave: Paid absence for employees who are victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and/or stalking to receive care and counseling.
- Leave of Absence: Approved time off (could be paid or unpaid) for reasons not covered by other types of leave not offered at the workplace in question.
- PTO (Paid Time Off): An approach to employee leave that lumps all of a company’s different forms of paid time off into one simple category, giving each employee a fixed number of paid days off they can take at their discretion, typically pending managerial approval.
All these different ways to provide employees with time off, whether for recreation or for emergency reasons, might seem to make the country’s workplaces seem generous. But it’s also important to realize that there are millions of workers who get little or no paid time off at all. Unlike most other developed nations in the world, the US does not have a firm national policy about paid leave from work, making employee time off tracking all the more important given the unique approach taken by each company.
Make Time Off Tracking Easy by Choosing the Right Tool
If your company needs to get better at managing worker leave, then it’s time to find the right employee time off tracking tool. The good news is that in the digital age of the 21st century, your business doesn’t have to go through complicated software installations on the company’s servers or worry about upgrading to new versions. This is the beauty of SaaS – software as a service – which gives you the opportunity to take advantage of any number of web-based applications for employee time off tracking. And these can be surprisingly affordable solutions. The challenge, of course, is figuring out which one is right for your company, given that there are scores of options to sift through. For more information on how to go about choosing the right tool, see our recent article, Leave Management System: What Does Your Company Need? If your company is ready to tackle the challenge of employee time off tracking, take a close look at CaptureLeave and sign up for a free trial to find out if it’s the right tool for you!