About Enhanced Leave Approval Rules

We now have the ability to enable Enhanced Leave Approvals in HR Partner. The new Enhanced Approvals process allows you to set up:

  • Sophisticated rules and conditions around who gets to approve leave requests from employees
  • Multiple tiers of approvals by managers or supervisors
  • Fellow employees being able to approve leave for their peers without having to be admin users in the system

By default, all new HR Partner companies will be set up for Simple Leave Approvals, but you can enable Enhanced Approvals by going to Time Off & Leave > Configure > Leave Settings, and switching on the option for Enhanced Leave in here and saving the options.

Below is a description of the differences between our Simple and Enhanced approval methods:

Simple Leave Approvals

By default, all HR Partner companies have simple leave approvals enabled. This allows you to get started as quickly as possible, and gives you a flexible way to approve leave requests from your employees.

The main things to consider with simple leave approvals is:

  • Only admin users can approve leave requests for your employees
  • Leave requests can be sent to multiple admin users, but the first person to approve the request will flag the request as approved and completed
  • You can set up default admin users(s) to always be sent any leave request
  • Leave requests from employees can, in some circumstances, be sent to their direct supervisors, but only if their direct supervisor is also an admin user in the system

In the example below, Lynne wants to go on a holiday, so she sends in a leave request to Bob, the General Manger, and Anne, a department head within the company.

Bob sees her request first, and approves it straight away.  Her request is immediately marked as ' Approved' and Lynne is all good to go without having to wait for Anne to also approve it.

Enhanced Leave Approvals

Enhanced leave approvals give you a lot more power and management over the whole leave approval process. You can set up multiple rules which dictate how leave processes are approved or rejected. You can do this by setting up as many Rule Conditions as you like, then for each condition, you can set up multiple Actions that need to take place.

For example, you can say that all employees in the Sales and Finance departments will have to have their leave requests approved by Jim, and those in the Warehouse and Operations departments will have to have their requests approved by Susie AND Walter before going ahead. In this case, the Department restrictions will be the conditions you need to define, and the people who can approve the leave for each condition are the actions. Here is what that looks like as a flowchart:

But you can get even more complex than that. Let's say that your company has warehouses in Sydney, Taiwan, Mumbai and Paris - and different warehouses have different managers who need to approve the leave requests for the employees working there.

Not a problem - you can define cascading conditions. So, under the Department condition for Warehouse and Operations, you can set another group of conditions for Location. As you can see below, the Sydney & Taiwan warehouses have different approvers than the Mumbai and Paris warehouses.

Also note that the Mumbai & Paris warehouses have a 2 Actions, or a 2 step process of approvals. Those requests will have to go to Pierre and Johann first, and once either of them approve it, then it goes to Walter for final approval.

Note also that Walter is part of the final approval process for both Locations, so he is probably the main warehouse manager for the company.  Also take note that in Sydney/Taiwan, both Susie AND Walter will need to approve the request for it to pass, whereas in the Mumbai/Paris warehouse, only one of Pierre OR Johann needs to approve it before it moves to the next action for Walter to take care of.

You can see that by setting different levels of conditions, and also multiple action steps, you can set up really fine control over the approval process through your organisation. You can set up to 5 levels of cascading conditions, and up to 5 action steps under each condition in HR Partner.

Lets look at some examples below:

Example 1

Here, our poor overworked employee Lynne wants to request some time off. For her particular department, Lynne's approval condition means that her leave request will first have to be approved by her direct supervisor Jane, and if Jane OK's the request, then it gets sent to department heads Suzy, Steve and Anne, where any 2 out of the 3 of them need to approve it (or any 1 of them to reject it) before it gets sent to the General Manager Bob for final approve or rejection.

So, in the above example, Lynne's request gets first sent to Jane, who willingly approves the request.  It then goes to Suzy, Steve & Anne, where both Suzy and Steve approve it. Because Suzy and Steve are the first 2 out of the 3 managers to approve, Anne doesn't have to do anything, and the request is forwarded to Bob, who also approves it - meaning that Lynne has the rubber stamp of approval and is set to board the holiday bus!

Example 2

Let's look at another alternative scenario for Lynne.

Here, as before, Lynne submits her leave request, and it gets sent to Jane, who has no problems approving it. It then goes to Suzy, Steve and Anne as per usual, but then Steve rejects the request immediately. Now neither Suzy nor Anne has to get involved, as the Action rule says that if ANY of the 3 rejects it, then the request is rejected and doesn't progress any further, so even Bob never gets notified that there is a request for him to approve. Poor Lynne has to stay working her heart out instead of enjoying her holiday!

Setting Up

See our articles on Setting up Enhanced Leave Approval Rules, and also how to approve leave sent to you. We also have a guide for employees who want to submit leave requests.