In our increasingly litigious age, managers certainly have their work cut out for them. Not only do they have to manage leave of absence processes, but they also need to comply with federal, state, and local regulations to avoid penalties.
Without the right processes and tools, an employee’s protected leave can turn into a management headache or—even worse—a non-compliance risk. Believe it or not, 60 percent of businesses are still using a workaround (e.g., a payroll system) to manage the leave of absence process. Unfortunately, this exposes the organization to additional and unnecessary compliance risks.
By embracing business process automation, digitizing the leave of absence workflow, and trusting proven technology to expedite the process for you, it’s possible to ensure compliance with each request.
When employees take leave, unprepared organizations often deal with decreases in productivity because they cannot seamlessly fill shifts. In many cases, this is because they lack complete visibility into the leave of absence process, making it difficult to ensure that enough bodies are available when someone needs to take leave.
When organizations decide to manage the leave of absence internally with a manual process, employees spend a great deal of time managing Outlook reminders, updating Excel tracking sheets, checking and double-checking their process checklists, and distributing updates to colleagues. This takes time away from the productivity of other tasks and responsibilities.
Some organizations then turn to outsourcing the process to an external vendor, but doing so can incur unnecessary expenses. Outsourcing LOA can cost upward of $400 per case! Although it might seem like an effective solution on paper, organizations that go this route are likely to lose hundreds of dollars as a result, even though the LOA process can be entirely automated.
Keeping Employees Happy
If your organization is still managing the leave of absence process by hand, your employees are likely frustrated.
The process is mutually unenjoyable for the employee and the process manager. The employee who needs time off has to deal with an arduous, time-consuming, and potentially error-prone process during what is undoubtedly a difficult time, and the managing employee is stuck navigating a repetitive, manual process they know could be automated.
By embracing digitization and automating your leave of absence process, you make the experience easier on both sides of the equation. This increases the likelihood that all employees involved will stick around, which is a major advantage during a historic labor shortage.
Now, let’s explore how traditional LOA tracking tools, like spreadsheets, fall short.