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Seasonal Coverage

Cincinnati, OH | Posted: 12/16/2015 | Author: April Koenig

Seasonal Coverage

Scheduling employee leave and vacation during the holidays is a juggling act that never pleases everyone, even when you’re well-prepared. So imagine the mess you’ll be in if you don’t pay the proper attention! Minimizing worker complaints is a must for vacationers and those covering alike, to ensure relative harmony for all involved. Consider the following steps when dealing with the holiday schedule.

Plan Ahead – Make sure your holiday scheduling policy is explained in great detail during the new hire process. Policies and procedures should be spelled out in a written process so there is no confusion. A coherent guideline that your crew signs off on in the beginning will prevent surprise or misunderstanding later on.

Production Projection – Set a deadline for vacation submission requests early enough to be able to project your production output for the holiday season. Employee absences during the holidays will be sure to change production, and tracking it far enough ahead will give you the opportunity to project that difference. It also leads to the next step.

Reserve The Right To Amend – Let employees know that a request isn’t necessarily an approval. Depending on how much production may be lost, you may have to cap the number of requests, or at least rearrange some of the time off. Cross-coverage, date overload and even workload distribution can lead to changes. Alert workers that changing deadlines and new demands take precedent and can sometimes mean restriction to off time.

Learn To Say NO – Sometimes saying no to a request is unavoidable. Just try not to be a Grinch when giving the bad news. Be empathetic and understanding, but relay in no uncertain terms that productivity goals and deadlines need to be met. Not everyone gets to take it easy at holiday time, and for one legitimate reason or another, some people are needed at work.

Plan For Absence – Make sure you’ve factored in some unplanned absence due to sick days (legit or otherwise) when getting your holiday schedule in order. It’s the time of year for flu bugs and the like, so be ready. Jack Frost may nip at their nose, but proper planning can keep him from making a mess of your vacation schedule!

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