Which leave management software is right for your organisation?


Leave management software is the cornerstone of any people-centric organisation, we think.

When you start, spreadsheets and brief emails work decently enough. But relying on spreadsheets and email chains create many hoops for teammates to jump through just to take a holiday.

So if you have your heart set on productivity and growth (don’t we all?), you need proper leave management software.

That’s easier said than done because organisations are pretty much spoilt for choice in this department.

There are tonnes of features, a range of prices, and levels of customisation and transparency that can confuse even the stout-hearted.

From our experience building for leave management software users like you, here’s what you ideally should prioritise:

  1. Employee-self-service: to allow teammates to manage their time off and leave balances without HR needing to step in
  2. Simple application and approval processes: To apply for and approve time off as soon as needed and without the process taking weeks
  3. Multiple leave types: To account for the various legal and situational circumstances during which someone might need time off
  4. Real-time leave tracking: To ensure up-to-date information that enables better capacity planning
  5. Workspace integrations: To connect leave management software with popular workspace tools including Slack and Google Calendar

Top leave management software to consider

We’ve simplified the search for the right leave management software below!

1. Pause

Ideal for: Startups, agencies, remote teams

Pause helps you manage time off in the easiest way possible and automates much of the process so you have your hands free. While perfect for startups, agencies, and remote teams, Pause is also used by larger teams, who value the tool’s transparency and seamless communication.

Pause has all the high-priority leave management software features we talked about above, and then some:

  • Three-step application and approval processes
  • Colour-coded calendar and table views to see teammates’ leave bookings
  • All Hands feature to lock critical dates when you need all hands on deck
  • Leave summary notifications on Slack for better planning
  • Google Calendar integration that auto-declines meeting invites during leave periods
  • Clear leave policies that guide employees while taking time off
  • Automatically calculated leave balances that teammates can see for themselves
  • Data exports to manage payroll and other HR processes
  • Birthday and work anniversary notifications to celebrate important days
  • Burnout flags if a teammate hasn’t taken time off in a long while

Pause is super customisable. Set custom workweeks, change leave cycles, create personalised leave types, even divide employees into teams to make leave management easier.

We’re proud to say that our support service is also considered top-notch — simply open up a fresh chat and you’ll be talking to a teammate in minutes!

Pause offers a 90-day free trial with no credit card details required. At $1 per user per month after that, Pause is considered one of the most affordable options. It’s also free for life for non-profits!

2. Vacation Tracker

Ideal for: Slack-based small to mid-sized companies

Vacation Tracker helps you eliminate paper and spreadsheets as well, making leave management easier.

You can set up custom notifications for upcoming leave bookings; administrators can get a comprehensive overview through the Administrator dashboard.

Vacation Tracker also has integrations for Slack, Google Workspace and Microsoft Teams making it simpler to manage time off from where you do work.

You get a 14-day free trial when you choose this leave management software. After that, the pricing is $25/month for 50 employees or less.

They also have custom pricing for enterprises which includes everything in their core plan and more.

3. Calamari

Ideal for: companies needing both attendance and absence management

Calamari is a cloud-based people management software that integrates with a whole host of tools: Slack, JIRA, Office 365, Google Workspace, Basecamp, and Asana.

The tool serves two main purposes, which are clock in/clock out management and leave management. Depending on which one you need, you can select that plan.

It supports languages other than English, including German, Polish, French and Spanish.

The leave management software side of Calamari costs $2 per person per month when billed monthly, and $1.7 per employee per month when billed annually.

The clock in/clock out package costs $2.5 per user on a monthly plan and $2 on a yearly plan. They offer a 14-day free trial to help you get started.

4. SumHR

Ideal for: Large organisations looking for HR suites

Some larger teams want more than leave management software; they want the whole HR shebang. SumHR is that kind of HR suite. Along with tracking attendance and time off, their employee experience platform allows HR to:

  • automate payroll and expense claims
  • use biometric devices
  • manage GPS-based attendance
  • streamline onboarding and exits
  • recruit candidates
  • organise HR operations, and
  • review performance and OKRs. Phew!

Their pricing reflects their extensive suite of features. The basic plan, which includes leave management and payroll, costs $3 per month per person. However, adding on features like recruitment and OKR tracking costs extra.

They also charge a one-time setup fee when you sign up. All of this might prove to be expensive for small to mid-sized companies, but affordable for large ones with over 1000 employees.

5. GreytHR

Ideal for: Large organisations and those looking for HR suites

GreytHR automates several HR processes including leave management, making it more than just a leave management software. Their list of features includes:

  • Payroll processing
  • Attendance management
  • Employee lifecycle management
  • Guidance for HR and payroll managers
  • Employee self-service portal

If you have less than 25 employees, you can get started on GreytHR for free, with access to limited features. However, their more extensive plans cost upwards of $0.3/ month/ employee with a minimum $20/month cost. However, you do get a 7-day free trial to take these plans for a spin.

Small to mid-sized companies may not need all of these features — but for the ones that do, this leave management software is worth giving a shot.

The bottom line

Whatever leave management software you decide to spring for, the bottom line is that having a streamlined, automated process is a must for happy teams. After all, you want everyone to focus on being their productive best, not feeling guilty over breaks and struggling with complicated processes, right?

All these software are poised to help you achieve that. However, it’s essential to look carefully at what level of complexity, pricing, and the number of features suits your organisation.

If you’ve decided to go with Pause after all that reading, we’re so glad! We’d love to have you onboard and help you build happy and engaged teams.

You can book a demo with our team here or jump straight into your 90-day free trial. Happy Pausing!

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