excel leave tracker

Why You Shouldn’t Use An Excel Leave Tracker For Your Business

Reading Time: 4 minutes

If you’re using an Excel leave tracker to track your company’s PTO, chances are that you hate it. 

Maybe each employee in your company has their own perception of how much leave they’ve taken, lost, or accumulated. Maybe your CEO decided they needed to manage their own time off and now you have too many overlapping conflicts to keep track of. Or maybe your Excel spreadsheet is so cluttered that you don’t know where it starts or where it ends. Long story short, manual leave tracking sounds like a nightmare.

In the end, though, what are the consequences of tracking your leaves with an Excel leave tracker? We’re glad you asked. Here are a few reasons why you shouldn’t be using an Excel leave tracker for your business.

It’s a very time-consuming process

Manually updating a single Excel spreadsheet with every employee’s leave data, including their rollover days, expired days, cashed out PTO, vacation days, and more can be really time-consuming. 

It is your responsibility to collect data from employees and managers in different departments, which you then enter into a spreadsheet. Once you have collected the data, you must summarize it manually and submit it to their supervisors. They will review it, then send it back to you. And once that’s done, you have to type all of it in. 

We don’t know about you, but our minds are tired just by thinking about all that work. This entire process consumes time and effort that could be spent on other tasks. After all, just imagine doing that for every employee in every department of your company. On top of your actual workload and countless other responsibilities at work, who has time to update and keep track of a cluttered spreadsheet?

Not to mention, confusing

When you’re at the center of inputting leave information into a single spreadsheet, you’re likely to feel a little overwhelmed. And a little confused.

Let us explain why. Since you’re going to get leave data from a ton of sources within your company, chances are that each person is going to have their own version of their leave history. Keeping track of all this information across countless emails, documents, and messages is bound to seem confusing. It can also invariably lead to information getting lost.

Furthermore, spreadsheets are often created by employees using their own terminology and formulas. Consider this: employees come and go. Sometime down the line, you might discover your new HR manager is unable to decipher the files left by the previous employee. Afterward, your new employee will edit the spreadsheet so that it makes more sense to them. As a result, you may end up with spreadsheets that are impossible to understand and make changes to. That ultimately means that all your hard work will amount to nothing. 

It could potentially lead to data errors

Tying in from the previous point, the confusion between cross-checking countless employee information can lead to the all-familiar problem of human data error. 

After all, we are only human. As such, it is so easy to make mistakes when manually entering information into an excel leave tracker. Employees are required to merge documents, convert data from multiple files, as well as copy and paste data entries. A small mistake can cost your company a lot of money.

Furthermore, here’s the cherry on top: Up to 88% of all Excel spreadsheets contain errors, according to a survey by Market Watch. Just imagine how many will be on your Excel leave tracker!

There’s no privacy

In most cases, an employee’s leave information (including their PTO allowance, rollovers, etc.) is confidential stuff, usually just shared between an employee and their manager. However, if you choose to use an Excel leave tracker for your business, this means that your information is at risk of getting exposed to other employees in your company. Excel does not allow you to control what information is shown to others. Yes, you could password-protect your file, but staff members will still be able to access certain information.

An Excel leave tracker spreadsheet can be altered or even deleted. This poses a threat because this sensitive information can easily be misplaced, lost, or replicated. 

And it’s inconvenient

Lastly, what is the point of a leave tracker if it doesn’t remind you when an employee is scheduled to go on leave? Many of us have had the unfortunate surprise of dealing with a teammate going on vacation right before an important deadline. It’s not fun, and it should never happen again. Using an Excel leave tracker, your employees won’t know who’s going on leave and when. This may ultimately lead to vacation overlaps or overbooking — either of which isn’t good for your business.

How we can help

Stop wasting time updating one huge spreadsheet with all the details of your employees’ leave. You can do better than that — use our leave tracking software, and manage all your PTO in one place.

With our leave management solution, you can request, approve and manage your PTO in just a few clicks, directly from Slack, Microsoft Teams, or Google Workspace. Vacation Tracker makes it easy for users to customize their leave tracking experience. This includes creating their own locations, leave policies, leave types, and much more. In addition, users can take advantage of our online dashboard to export reports, get daily/weekly notifications, integrate with an external calendar, plus much more. Lastly, choose between our Core and Complete plans to meet the needs of your company.

Sounds interesting? Try it for free today!

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