TimeControl Banked Vacation, Chris Vandersluis, Christopher Vandersluis, Christopher Peter Vandersluis

Blog – Accrual Use Cases

TimeControl Banked Vacation, Chris Vandersluis, Christopher Vandersluis, Christopher Peter VandersluisWe don’t talk often about the Accruals module in TimeControl since almost all of its work is in the background, yet it is one of the most popular features of the product.  Like everything in TimeControl, Accruals is incredible flexible so, rather than look at a whole list of how it works, let’s talk instead about a few example use cases of where you might want to use it.  There are 4 categories of Accrual Rules that you can create in TimeControl, and you can have as many rules as you wish.  An Accrual Rule can apply to all employees or only certain employees.  The four categories are:

  1. A rule based on the calendar and on a static value
  2. A rule based on the calendar but calculated on values in the timesheet
  3. A rule based on the Rate code
  4. A rule based on the values in the hours on the timesheet

The possible uses of these four categories is vast and we’ve seen some clients use them in highly innovative ways that we wouldn’t have ever thought of when we created the product.  Let’s consider a couple of real-life use-case challenges:

Earning Vacation every month

Let’s say your organization lets you earn your vacation on a monthly basis.  If, for example, you get 3 weeks of vacation a year, then every month you’ll earn 1/12 of those 15 days.  That works out to 1.25 days per month.  Simple enough.  In TimeControl, you’d make an Accrual Rule based on the calendar and a simple numerical calculation.  TimeControl would trigger the value on the last day of every month and then you would add 1.25 days to the Employee Field you have defined for Vacation.   If you do something similar for sick leave, you can do the same thing in a second rule.  Let’s say you get 6 days of sick leave per year.  Each month, you’d earn ½ a day of sick leave.  Once you’ve set this rule up, there’s nothing else to do about it.  It will continue on forever for any active employee.  If you have different rules for employees in different categories or different locations, you can create the rule multiple times and associate it to a filter of employees

What about taking vacation that an employee has earned.  Simple again. You create a charge code, let’s call it “Paid vacation” and in the Charge Code table, let’s flag that code against the same field we talked about above for vacation.  Now TimeControl will reduce the amount in that bank of time by the amount taken on a timesheet as it’s posted.

Once this process is established, it rarely needs to be touched again.  Hours will be earned and go into the bank, hours will be spent and taken out of the bank all in the background.  You can create validation rules that checks that people have enough hours in their vacation bank to ensure that everything stays within your policies for time off.

Banked Overtime

Let’s turn to another common business challenge.  Your organization allows employees to earn overtime but rather than pay that overtime out immediately, the company allows the employee to bank the overtime for use as vacation time later.  This is a very popular process.  Sometimes the time is banked at 100% of the overtime worked, sometimes it is at 150% or some other percentage.  In some cases, employees elect not to bank the overtime but would prefer that it appear on their pay.  All of this is accomplishable in TimeControl with a combination or Rate/Charge code combinations and Accrual Module rules.

In the Rate table, we make a rate code for banking the time.  Let’s call it “Bank-in. In the Accrual module, we make a rule that says “When you see “Bank-in”, put those hours at the defined percentage into one of the banks defined by in the Employee Table.  Now, when the timesheet is posted, the appropriate number of hours are added to that bank.

To take time out of the bank, we use the same process.  We name a rate field “Bank-out” and a vacation code called “Vacation from Bank” then someone can take vacation using the Bank-out rate and that will remove those hours from the bank associated to that charge in the Charge Table.

Employees can always see where their banked time is in reports and views right inside TimeControl.  TimeControl’s security never lets someone look at data they don’t have the rights to, so these views are often put right on the TimeControl dashboard.  A more detailed dynamic view is in the reporting area where employees can self-serve their banked and earned time in a view that shows every transaction in and out of the bank.

Special Condition Bonuses

We’ve had requests for things that don’t sound at all like vacation that are easily handled in the Accruals module.  Let’s say that sometimes an employee will have to do something out of the ordinary.  Perhaps it is climbing with special equipment or descending into a tunnel or diving underwater.  In those circumstances, the agreement from the company is to pay a particular type of bonus.  This might be an amount of money or might be something unusual such as replacement equipment or clothing if the employee worked in a haz-mat situation. The Accruals module can identify these kinds of conditions in the timesheet with a Rate code or Charge code condition and then create a specific entry in a banked field defined in the Employee table.  This would allow the specific bonus or money to be flagged by payroll or HR or whoever would be responsible for such bonuses.

Banking Personal Time Off for part-timers

We’ve talked about earning vacation and sick leave for salaried people but what about people who work irregular hours.  Can TimeControl calculate how much Personal Time Off (PTO) should be earned by a part-time or irregularly scheduled employee?  Of course.  The TimeControl Accruals Module would make a rule based on the values in the hours on the timesheet.  Let’s say that part-timers earn time off at the same 3 weeks a year rate we talked about earlier.  That’s a 15% earning rate.  Easy to calculate.  For every 100 hours worked, you’ve earned 15 hours of PTO.  These hours would be banked into either the bank defined as the regular vacation field or into a unique bank for PTO.  Then paid time off could be taken against that bank.

But of course, that’s not all

That’s just 4 possible use-case scenarios of the Accruals Module.  Combinations of flexible charge codes, flexible rates, the Accruals Module and other TimeControl functionality allows a virtually limitless number of business challenges to be modeled in the system.

With the flexibility of TimeControl underlying every feature we write, it only makes sense that you’ll find it in these human resources types of challenges too.

You can find out more about the Accruals Module at: www.timecontrol.com/features/accruals.  You can find out more about HR business challenges including an example of a detailed Banks report at: www.timecontrol.com/use-cases/human-resources.  If you’ve got a particular business challenge you’re wondering if TimeControl can handle, let us know what it is at: www.timecontrol.com/contact.