Vacation leave request sample

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Make employee vacation requests easier, clearer with the right forms
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Testing a vacation leave request sample can help you pick the right form

It won't be long until your employees start thinking about their next holiday or summer vacation. And for most companies, that means keeping track of requests and schedules. A good employee vacation tracking system can make it easier, but finding the right tools can be tricky.

That's where testing can come in handy. Trying different vacation leave request sample forms is one of the best places to start. The right vacation request form can make it easy for your staff to ask for and schedule time off, and can simplify your HR recordkeeping. The wrong forms can make an already complicated process into a scheduling nightmare.

As you look for the right sample forms to test, here are some factors you might want to consider.

Form complexity

If your vacation scheduling process requires several elements to consider, you might need to buy or design an HR form that touches on all the points. But for most businesses, a simple form that includes the employee name, department or supervisor, contact information and requested dates is pretty much enough.

Try to avoid any form so complex that you need to schedule an employee training class before it can be used. 

Fill in the date or circle

An employee leave request form that offers a calendar that employees can use to circle requested days off might be a good fit for some organizations. Not only does it simplify the process, it makes mistakes in dates less likely.

Two part or one part?

Choosing a two part form that either self duplicates, or allows for a tear-off section that can be returned to the employee is a good way to notify employees that their request has been approved or denied.

Some companies even opt for a three part form. The first is submitted by the employee, the second is kept by the supervisor or manager and the third is returned to the employee to confirm or deny the request.

A one part form works well in companies where requests or responses (or both) are handled electronically, or are recorded on a central wall calendar or other location. In these businesses, the paper form is for the request only.

Standard forms or custom designed

Most small and medium-sized businesses do just fine with preprinted vacation request forms. But some companies have codes for different types of leave and different kinds of approvals, denials or modifications.

In these cases, a custom-designed leave form might be needed to keep it simple enough for employees, while providing essential details for managers and the human resources department.

Electronic forms

If a paperless office is your goal, you might want to consider an entirely electronic vacation request system where everything from the request forms to the scheduling calendars are located online or on the company intranet.

If you're considering this option, make sure all employees have access to computers, and are comfortable with digital forms and sites.

Testing your samples

Once you've narrowed your choices down to a few vacation leave request sample forms, test them within your organization. Gather feedback from employees, managers and HR personnel, to assess how each form worked (or did not work) for them.

Once you know which style works best for your organization, make it your official leave request form. Train employees and managers in how the form is to be used, then document the process in your employee handbook.

Scheduling employee vacations may never be easy.  But with the right forms, it can become a manageable part of your human resource management process.

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