There are unique challenges to handling your delivery team’s leave management.

  • You need a remote way for your team to submit leave requests and check their own time off balance. Your drivers are rarely in an office, if at all. Some teams may be fully remote. So the software you use must be easily accessible from home and on the road.
  • You need a way to track each driver’s annual leave balance automatically and in detail.  You need a clear breakdown of when each person is off, so you can plan your drivers’ schedules and routes. Plus, you want to know what kind of leave they’re on (such as holiday leave, sick leave, and so on). Finally, you want this information updated automatically by the software, to free up your time and reduce any chance of scheduling errors.
  • You want to avoid burnout. You already have limits on how many hours your drivers can be on the road in a row. But you also want to make sure your drivers are taking their holidays throughout the year. This helps your team avoid burnout, and it helps you avoid a crowded end-of-the-year rush where all of your drivers are trying to take their holiday at the same time.

In this post, we look at two different types of leave management software for transport companies.

  • Option #1: Timestatic. Timetastic is our leave management software that your drivers can use to easily check their leave balances and submit new time off requests. It’s available as both a web and mobile app. Timetastic automatically updates your company records, including a shared time off calendar for you and your team. Plus, it alerts you when someone may be overdue for some well-earned time off. We go over Timetastic in more detail below, but you can also start a free one-month trial to see how it works for yourself.
  • Option #2: HR Management Software. HR software can come with leave management features like time off tracking, while also having features that help with recruiting and onboarding, payroll management, performance management, and more. You’ll want to consider option #2 for your business if you need more features than our leave management software offers.

Option #1: Timetastic- leave management software for transport teams

In this section, we look at how Timetastic:

  • Gives drivers an easy way to submit their leave requests (at home or on the road).
  • Automatically keeps your leave management records updated.
  • Tells you which drivers are at risk of burnout.

How your drivers submit time off requests

First, Timetastic is both a web app and a mobile app. (The mobile app works with both iOS and Android.) This means that your drivers can submit leave requests on their computer or mobile phone. This flexibility is a big win for your transport team, as most of your team isn’t going to be centralised in an office.

When your drivers log into Timetastic, they see their Wallchart.

Here’s an image of what a Wallchart looks like from the mobile app:

Their Wallchart gives them an updated time off calendar where they can see their own leave balance (in a number icon next to their name), and see who already has time off scheduled. By having all of this information in one spot, they can easily put in a new leave request.

Quick FYI: To protect everyone’s privacy, you can set it so your team can see when other drivers are off, but not the reason why they’re off.

When someone wants to put in a new request, they pick the dates they want, pick the type of leave they’re taking, and they can even provide optional notes or upload documentation, if necessary. For example, they might want to provide a health note from their doctor if they’re taking a sick day.

Requesting leave in the Timetastic app

When a request is submitted, it gets sent to you — or whoever is set up as their approver in your company’s approval process. You can get requests sent to you through email, Slack, or Microsoft Teams.

When you get the request, you can approve or decline it with one click. Everything you need to make a decision is in the request.

Sophie Jones has requested time off: Mon 16th August through Fri 20th August

You can also set up an automatic approval process.

For example, let’s say you’re already using some sort of delivery management software that gives your drivers their schedule and routes, and you want to use Timetastic to track everyone’s leave balance and keep an updated and shared time off calendar. That means you don’t need to approve each leave request because the driver’s schedule has already been made. You just need a way to deduct and track leave for your records.

In that case, you can have Timetastic approve new time off requests for you. When a request is approved, your employee’s leave balance and your team’s time off calendar is automatically updated — you don’t need to do anything.

To make sure you don’t suffer any driver shortages, you can:

  • Set maximum absent levels. This tells Timetastic how many drivers can take the same day off. Once the maximum absent level threshold is met, Timetastic won’t approve any more requests.
  • Lock key dates. When you lock a date, that means you’re making a specific day ineligible for time off requests. You can lock dates for the entire team, or by specific drivers. For example, if you run a courier business that sees a major uptick in deliveries during the holiday season, then you might lock key dates throughout November and December.

This is how locked dates appear on your team’s Wallchart, so there’s no confusion for your team on when they can or can’t take a holiday:

You can lock dates you don’t want team members taking time off

How Timetastic keeps everyone’s information updated and accessible

When a request is approved, all of your records are automatically updated.

This means an employee’s annual leave balance is updated, and your time off calendar is updated.

Plus, you can easily access all of this info from either the web or mobile app. You can see everyone’s leave balance from your Wallchart.

Annual leave remaining per each Customer Service team member

And when you click on a driver’s name, you can see a clear history of when they took leave throughout the year.

An annual break down of a driver’s leave balance

You’ll get a breakdown of what type of leave someone has taken over the year — sick leave, parental leave, holiday leave, etc. (You can customise what leave types your company offers in your settings.)

Absence Insights: You organisation's absence data, at a glance

You can see when throughout the year most of your drivers take their time off.

How Timetastic helps your drivers avoid burnout

Making sure your drivers are well-rested is a big part of the transport business, otherwise, you risk serious injury or worse to your staff. While there are likely local laws about how many hours in a row your driver can be on the road, there are fewer systems in place to make sure your team is taking their well-earned holiday throughout the year.

We solve this problem at Timetastic with a Burnout Board. Your Burnout Board tells you which of your drivers haven’t taken time off recently, and who doesn’t have any time off coming up.

Burnout Board in Timetastic: See who might be overworking or in need of a break.

This helps you:

  1. Prevent burnout, which is better for your company culture, driver retention rates, and job performance.
  2. Prevent a bottleneck at the end of the year where all of your fleet is trying to take time off during the same period.

To make sure you don’t accidentally overlook this information, you’ll get an email — The Fire Wire — at the end of every quarter.

The Fire Wire: A quarterly update of who is at risk of burnout

A quick recap on how transport teams can benefit from leave management software

We have discussed how transport companies can use Timetastic as their leave management software.

  • Timetastic keeps accurate and up-to-date records of everyone’s leave, including a detailed breakdown of what type of leave was taken.
  • Your drivers can access all their information from a mobile app, and put in new time off requests from their app.
  • You can see which drivers are at risk of burning out, and could do with a holiday.

If you’d like to see how easy it is to run your transport team’s leave management with Timetastic, start your free one-month trial today.

Option 2: Using HR software with leave management features

Another option for your transport company is finding HR software with leave management features. As we said at the beginning of this post, this option is only worth considering if you need all of the other features that HR software comes with.

For example, let’s look at Sage HR. Sage HR has key features for leave management (which we cover in a moment), but it also comes with:

  • Core HR features: Such as collecting eSignatures from your team, document management, making company-wide announcements, setting up organisational charts and creating a company hierarchy, creating custom workflows (for example setting up an alert when an employee has a birthday).
  • Performance management features: You can set up goals, get and give feedback, hold 1-on-1 meetings, and send out surveys.
  • Timesheets: You also get attendance management tools with Sage. You can use Sage HR to set up project timesheets that let you track how long someone has spent on a specific project. You can also use timesheets to get a daily schedule, including when someone clocks in, goes on break, and clocks out for the day.
  • Expenses: Your drivers can use the employee self-service Sage HR mobile app to record any expenses that they’ll need reimbursed. For example, long-haul drivers may get a per diem for meals. They would record their receipts in the app, and then you can reimburse them.
  • Recruiting features: With Sage HR, you can use a drag-and-drop interface to take applicants into consideration. You can schedule interviews and rate how the interview went.

When it comes to Sage HR’s leave management features, you get:

  • A shared calendar: This calendar lets your team plan their own time off requests.
  • Custom approval flows: You can set who within your company is responsible for approving/declining someone’s time off.
  • An easy approval process: You can approve someone’s time off request from the Sage HR app, Slack, or from your email.

It isn’t a question of whether or not you can use a tool like Sage HR to manage your team’s leave; it’s more of a question of whether you’ll benefit from all the other non-leave management features that you’re paying for. If you don’t need features for managing your HR processes, then getting a tool like Sage HR just doesn’t make sense.

And while you can pick which features you pay for, you’re still stuck with using at least Sage’s core HR features.

For example, Sage’s Core HR features plus leave management is £4 per user; compared to Timetastic’s core leave management features for £1 per user (or  £2 per user for all of the features).

If you’re interested in specific HR software solutions, we review two different tools in our post on finding the best annual leave software.

A quick recap: Choosing the best option for your transport business

If you’re looking to streamline your entire human resources department — including everything from recruiting and onboarding to leave management — then consider getting an HR tool.

But if you don’t need those extra features, then don’t pay for them. You’re better off with our leave management software, which is affordable and easy to use.

With Timetastic:

  • Your drivers can easily check their leave balance and submit new time off requests.
  • You can quickly respond to time off requests with one click.
  • You’ll always have an accurate record of everyone’s leave balance and approved time off.
  • You can see which drivers may be overworking.

Start your free one-month trial today.

For more information on leave management platforms and options, check out these posts: