Time off request forms are designed to help businesses maintain efficiency and productivity while employees are away from work. Learn more about time off request forms, download our free printable forms, and get answers to common questions about office time off policies.
Below you’ll find three different time off request forms. Enter your email below to download editable versions, then read on to learn more.
Why Offices Use Time Off Request Forms
Requesting time off in advance allows management to prepare for being understaffed so that work doesn’t come to a standstill in an employee’s absence. They provide structure and transparency, so employees, employers, and their teams know what to expect.
Time off request forms can provide advance notice to help businesses plan ahead for absences. They ensure vacation days aren’t overbooked, and they keep track of days off to ensure each employee is getting the time off they need.
Employee Time Off Request Form Templates
Sick Leave Time Off Request Form
A sick employee is one you don’t want around the office. A missing worker may be detrimental to productivity, but an entire workforce out of commission would be considerably worse. The more you can contain an illness, the better for your office.
If your employee is very ill, they are not going to be doing their best work, and showing up despite being sick puts everyone at risk of catching whatever the sick employee has. Ensure your employees are able to ask for the time off they need with our time off request form template, available for download at the top of this post.
Use our fillable time off request form pdf that will allow employees to submit a sick leave request from home. Keeping sick employees at home when they are sick will help them get better faster and prevent the spread of illness throughout your office.
Vacation Time Off Request Form
Vacation time isn’t just a luxury—it’s critical to employee wellness and wellbeing. Brigid Schulte, the director of the Better Life Lab at the New America Foundation, says it “behooves managers, CEOs and leaders to create systems that prioritize a culture of vacation,” since people who don’t take time off are "sicker, less productive, stressed, and more anxious and depressed—that affects your work as well.”
If your employees aren’t feeling well, they aren’t performing well. Make vacation time not only accessible but mandatory.
A simple time off request form will ensure your company is keeping track of all requested vacation time. A request form will help make sure you don’t have too many overlapping vacations and that you are able to adequately cover any missing employees. Maintaining documents on requested vacation will also help you identify anyone who is requesting either too much or too little time off.
Ensure your employees are able to ask for the time off they need with our fillable time off request form template, available for download at the top of this post.
General PTO Time Off Request Form
Paid time off is requested for circumstances such as maternity leave or a prolonged illness. The term is also sometimes used as a catchall for sick days, personal days, and vacation. A paid leave of absence from work can put financial pressure on small businesses, so unpaid leave is more common in the United States. There are circumstances that require the employer to pay their employee while on leave, but these vary from state to state. Consult the Family and Medical Leave Act for more details.
Use our time off request form to ensure you can plan in advance for any requested leave. The form will help office managers and business owners keep track of employee time off in order to adequately cover the leave for whatever the reason. This might include training current staff on new duties, hiring additional team members, or finding a temporary replacement.
Ensure your employees are able to ask for the time off they need with our free printable time off request form, available for download at the top of this post.
Common Questions About Time Off Policies
Should You Require A Doctor's Note for Sick Leave?
Verification of doctor’s note policies are a double-edged request. It can confirm that your employees are indeed sick or in need of time off, but they may make your employees feel like you don’t trust them. It may be difficult for an employee to get a doctor's note, especially for unexpected illnesses. Asking for this confirmation could take up valuable time that the employee could otherwise be using to get better.
Doctor’s notes are meant to be non-invasive to the employee’s personal life. Therefore, they should not include any private medical information or even a diagnosis. The note should only confirm that the employee was seen by a medical office, and the doctor has recommended they take sick leave.
Can You Fire an Employee for Being Sick?
An employer can fire their employee at any time and for any reason that is not illegal. There are exceptions addressed in both federal and state law.
Firing an employee for being sick is not a good look for a business. Doing so would soon cause rumors to spread throughout your office and outside of it too, which can harm your business’s reputation.
If you believe an employee is taking advantage of sick days, it’s best to talk to them about the issue before jumping to any conclusions. There may be a deeper issue that you are not aware of. Remember that not all illnesses are physical. Lead with empathy and compassion whenever addressing employee health.
If, after meeting with the employee and fully understanding the situation, you still believe there is an abuse of sick leave, you can provide a sick leave abuse warning letter. This should outline your sick leave policies and give the employee an opportunity to speak to you about any issues they may be having.
Should You Offer Personal Days?
A personal day is a paid or unpaid day of leave from work unrelated to illness or vacation that an employee can take at their discretion. A personal day may be taken for a wide variety of reasons; it may be to join your child on a school field trip, move residences, attend a funeral, or to care for a sick family member.
When vacation days are used for unfortunate circumstances such as caring for a sick loved one, a child’s doctor appointment, or the death of a family member, employees are unable to use their vacation days for their intended purpose—vacation. In these cases, employees are not truly gaining the benefits from their time off.
Every employee has a personal life and responsibilities outside of the office. Personal days give your employees the flexibility to manage their own life outside of work without digging into their valuable vacation days. Offering paid personal days show your employees you care about those lives and responsibilities, and it makes your business a more desirable place to work.
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