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Free Time Off Request Form Templates

Try these vacation request forms & workflows. See how automation makes the process more efficient and how online vacation request forms dramatically increase productivity compared to using Excel or paper.

A vacation/time-off/PTO request form is one of the most frequently used business forms. Organizations use it to track, approve and manage employee time off. Work is stressful and everyone needs a break so they come back rejuvenated and eager to produce amazing, new innovations. Well-designed, easy-to-use forms take one bit of stress out of the equation so employees can easily request vacation and get it approved quickly. At the same time, HR can also process the information in a timely manner.

What's on a vacation request form?

These forms contain important information:

  • Details of employee requesting time off.
  • Start and end dates of requested PTO.
  • Contingency plans in place e.g. which colleague to contact for immediate attention.
  • Approvals & signatures of the manager, HR etc.
  • Your logo and corporate name.

Common time-off request process routes for required approvals.

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Basic Time Off Request Process

This is a very common time off request process. The requesting employee fills out a form online. The e-form is dynamic, pre-populates fields, validates information and is signed electronically. Once the form is submitted, the system automatically routes it to the correct manager for approval. There's no need for the employee to email it manually thus avoiding errors like emailing to the wrong person. The manager is notified and reminders can also be setup if necessary. The manager can reject the request back to the employee for corrections, deny the vacation or approve it and forward to HR for processing and finalization. Finally, an email is sent to the employee with the relevant documents. Compare it to the Word document. It isn't dynamic, cannot pre-fill anything, does not validate information and must be printed for signature. Further, it has to be e-mailed back and forth for approval. The online version is significantly better.

Vacation request form dynamically updates pick lists from Google Sheets.

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Google Sheets Vacation Request Form

This vacation request form template connects to a Google Sheet. For demo purposes, it initializes a pick list with a list of valid users from the sheet. When you pick a user, it pulls the number of available annual, floating and sick days and dynamically sets up the relevant pick lists so the user cannot take more days of any given type then are available. The requesting employee signs the form electronically. The pick lists are enabled and disabled dynamically and the signature date is also auto-filled.
In contrast, the Word document provides none of this behavior. It cannot autofill user information, integrate with business data to pull available days or dynamically set up pick lists. To sign the form, it must be printed. It's far more error-prone, and inefficient.

Why online time off requests vs using Excel, Word, or paper?

Automating everyday operational activities is the most basic step towards digital transformation of your organization. If your processes are still manual and riddled with workarounds e.g. e-mailing Excel documents around, you have no hope of competing in the 21st century. Consider these advantages:

  • With manual processes, HR employees waste time on paperwork instead of focusing on what they should be doing – managing talent.
  • An Excel or paper form is much more likely to be an older version or contain errors e.g. the employee forgot to fill in a field or has a typo. The online version is always current and validates fields automatically to eliminate errors.
  • Manual processes typically have instructions that people must follow. These instructions may be outdated or confusing – once again, the result is mistakes that must be fixed – a costly and time-consuming endeavor.
  • Paper forms cannot be integrated with SQL or business systems. All fields must be filled in manually every time. This is unnecessary data entry that benefits no one and just burns time.
  • Dynamic behavior is also difficult with Excel and impossible with paper. If the form has conditional sections, the user has to figure it out manually. In contrast, the online form can dynamically show/hide sections as required.
  • Simply e-mailing the form for approval is itself fraught with error. Employees send the form to the wrong manager, forget about a second level of approval, the email gets buried in inboxes e.g. if the manager is on vacation etc. Tracking and chasing down signatures results in more email, phone calls and inefficiency.
The automated time off request form has significant advantages. In fact, customers are seeing rapid ROI by automating time off requests and other processes using our visual, drag & drop system.

Time-off request process routes to VP only under certain conditions.

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Conditional Time Off Request Approval Process

This is another very typical vacation request process. The online form pre-fills information, validates automatically, has dynamic behavior and is signed digitally. The system automatically routes it to the correct manager but, this time, if the number of vacation days is more than 5, it is routed to a VP for additional approval. All this happens automatically without the employee needing to manually email, track or chase down signatures. Once completed, the relevant documents are e-mailed to the requesting employee.
Compare with the Excel version. The employee or manager must remember that a longer vacation requires additional approval and must manually e-mail it to the VP. Then, they have to chase down the VP to ensure that it gets signed on time, track it, file it away etc. It's unnecessary busy work.

Dynamic absence record flow integrates with Google spreadsheets.

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Dynamic Absence Records with Google Sheets

This form is an administrative form that employees use to record absences during any given month. They fill it out once a month. The form demonstrates integration with Google Sheets by dynamically retrieving choices for a pick list and to fill out some fields. It also shows how frevvo forms allow you to show/hide sections, perform calculations and other dynamic behavior. As a result, the form is easier and faster to complete without mistakes. This form of integration is not possible with Excel or Word documents and certainly not with paper.

Why use electronic time off request forms?

Online forms are far superior to paper/email based forms:

  • Using an online form removes one bit of unnecessary stress as employees can easily find the form and request their vacation.
  • They also don't have to worry about chasing down their manager for approval since the system routes automatically.
  • The HR department spends less time processing paperwork and can spend more of their time focusing on what's important – talent.
  • Mistakes and missing data and the resultant delays are eliminated since the online form validates fields, flags errors and empty fields.
  • Since online forms work with mobile devices, a manager can approve from anywhere at any time.
  • Integration with HR systems and databases auto-fills fields, reduces unnecessary typing, errors and delays.
  • With electronic signatures, you never have to print which reduces paper use and helps the environment.

Vacation request process for a school routes for required approvals.

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School Vacation Request Process

This is a vacation request form for a school. It contains a single form that's routed to various people for approval. The form is dynamic - it pre-fills employee info, department, manager and available PTO days. It calculates the number of requested days and validates all fields automatically. The employee signs the form electronically on any device. The workflow then routes to the manager for e-signature and finally to HR. Employees don't need to chase down approvals and can track their request. Notifications and reminders are built-in. When completed, the process emails a PDF to the employee.
The Excel version has almost none of this functionality. It must be filled in manually, signed on paper and routed by email. Employees must chase down signatures and track by phone or email. It's slow, unnecessarily error-prone and inefficient.

Simple vacation/time-off request form emails PDF upon submission.

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Simple Vacation / Time Off Request Form

This time off request template collects employee information, time off request dates, optional comments and an online signature. If desired, additional documents can be attached e.g. a jury duty confirmation letter. After you submit the form, it will generate a PDF of the vacation request and send to your email address.
This is just a basic online form but compare it with any of the Excel or Word versions above and it already has significant benefits including validation, auto-completion of fields, and electronic signature.

Why frevvo for your PTO forms?

frevvo provides the easiest workflow software on the planet. With 100% visual form design, workflow routing, (visual rules) PDF mapping and a rich array of fields including signatures, grid controls, attachments etc. you can quickly design any business form and route it dynamically for approvals. It will automatically validate fields, work on mobile devices, look great and reduce paper use and delays. You won't have to hire expensive coders. Sign up for a free 30-day trial and get started today.

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