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A definite guide for leave tracking in Microsoft Teams

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Table Of Contents

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020, many businesses switched to remote work, with plans on staying remote even when the pandemic ends

There are plenty of reasons why more than 85 percent of companies intend to offer some kind of remote working arrangement when the pandemic ends. One of them is higher employee productivity. By some studies, employees who work remotely are 13 percent more productive than their in-office counterparts.

Furthermore, studies have shown that remote workers are happier, and have a greater work-life balance. They are more motivated, which are all prerequisites for managing a successful business.

However, those benefits don’t come by themselves. Companies have to invest their time and resources into making a successful transition that will become a sustainable working model. That’s why so many of them reached out to dedicated software that will help them communicate more effectively, ensure tasks’ timely completion, and avoid budget breaks.

Microsoft Teams is one of the most popular team collaboration software on the market, that helps companies and their employees achieve their goals effortlessly. However, even with a wide variety of tools and features this software has, it does come with some shortcomings. One of them is the lack of a built-in leave tracking tool. But, why is this important?

The importance of leave tracking for businesses

Leave tracking is a vital part of managing any business since it allows organizations to operate more effectively. By tracking leave, employers are ensuring they are meeting legal requirements, and that their employees are well-rested and on top of their game year-round. Ultimately, by tracking employee leave, businesses are able to decrease sick leave abuse and be more budget-conscious.

Leave tracking in Microsoft Teams, is it possible?

Even though Microsoft Teams doesn’t come with a built-in leave tracking tool, there is still a way around it that can make leave tracking in Microsoft Teams possible.

Here, we’re going to explain to you how to make leave tracking in Microsoft Teams successful and help you streamline operations.

Vacation Tracker

The first software for leave tracking in Microsoft Teams is, understandably, ours!

Vacation Tracker is a powerful leave tracking software that allows companies to track their employees’ leave seamlessly easy. After it initially came out as a Slack integration, Vacation Tracker made a version for Microsoft Teams as well, becoming one of the preferred leave tracking tools globally.

This software allows teams to easily manage their company’s leave requests and approvals. Based on the company’s needs, team members can choose to request a wide variety of leave types starting from sick leave, time off, jury duty, etc. On the other hand, managers can easily approve (or deny) employees’ requests without even having to leave Microsoft Teams.

Leave tracking can prove to be a challenging and tedious task for many managers. However, with Vacation Tracker, leave management becomes an easy-to-solve task that takes seconds to complete.

By using this software, employees and their managers can request and manage leave requests both via Microsoft Teams or Vacation Tracker web dashboard, seamlessly create leave policies, and manage multiple teams and locations by assigning several Approvers. 

Vacation Tracker also allows companies to create and edit custom leave types, ensuring the needs of each company (and employee) are met. Furthermore, companies can set up a custom work week for the entire organization, or even customize work weeks for individual employees.

Lastly, Vacation Tracker is built in a way that satisfies both the needs of small and big-sized organizations. What’s more, by signing up for a 7-day trial, customers can see if it fits their organizational needs before deciding to go with a paid plan. That way, they’ll ensure not a single dime is wasted.

Excel sheets

If your team uses Microsoft Teams on a daily basis, you inevitably share and collaborate on different documents. One of the main perks of using Microsoft Teams for your business is the fact it’s completely compatible with the Office 365 package that includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and similar tools we love and use daily.

However, a few of us are aware that Excel sheets in Microsoft Teams can be used to track employee leave as well.

Even though this method is less practical than using specialized tools such as Vacation Tracker, is nonetheless a viable way of managing your employee’s availability. 

To create an Excel sheet for leave tracking in Microsoft Teams, you just need to select the “New” option and then select the type of file you want to create (in this case Excel document). A New Excel sheet will open in Teams and you can edit it straight from the app, but if you prefer to work in the desktop version you can just select “Open in Desktop App” in the middle of the ribbon.

Then you’ll have to create custom fields for months, much like a calendar, and invite your coworkers to edit the file, putting leave requests by highlighting the custom fields and inserting their names in it. Files that are created and shared with a team are accessible to every member of the Team. They can be also edited via Office for the web, Android, or iOS. 

If you work with freelancers and you want to ensure their availability, but don’t want to include them in your Microsoft Teams workplace, you can share the Excel leave tracker with them as well, and they can edit it and open it, just as members of your Microsoft Teams workspace.

Or, you don’t have to create your own Excel, Microsoft’s team already did this for you. You just need to download their template, upload it to your Microsoft Teams workplace and further customize it.

Leave tracking in Microsoft Teams should be a breeze

… if you choose to use any of those two aforementioned ways. We give our vote to Vacation Tracker (surprise, surprise) since it’s much easier and leaves no room for a mistake. Leave tracking in Microsoft Teams can be time-consuming and confusing if done in Excel, especially if you manage a huge workforce. What’s more, even small businesses will find Vacation Tracker to be more affordable, and easier to manage, compared to traditional Excel sheets due to its simplicity and ease of use.

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Ana Mladenovic
Ana Mladenovic

A cat enthusiast and a cupcake maniac, Ana is a freelance Content Writer passionate about HR, productivity, and team management topics. When she’s not at her keyboard, you can find Ana in the kitchen, trying to make delicious cookies.

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