Adding default time off accrual policies (for new time off system)

If you use our TimeAttend or TimeOff product, see this topic instead.

An accrual policy is a set of rules that:

  • Determine the balance of time off available for a time off type, and
  • Automatically update that balance over time

Accrual policies allow you to allot time off according to your organization’s time off policies, without having to regularly update balances manually. Policies can specify:

  • The balance as of an effective date you choose
  • Scheduled additions to the balance (accruals) and resets of the balance
  • The maximum balance a user can obtain

Refer to Time off policy scenarios for examples of accrual policies.

 

Understanding default policies and effective dates

When you create a time off type, you can define the default policy or set of policies for that type. When you assign the time off type to a user, the default policy or policies are assigned to the user, effective as of their start date.

For example, imagine each new employee starts with 10 days of vacation time that increases to 12 days after 3 years of service. You can create a set of default policies to reflect these entitlements:

  • Policy 1: 10 days vacation, effective on the user's start date
  • Policy 2: 12 days of vacation, effective on the 3rd anniversary of their start date

If the user's time off allotment is different than the default settings, you can edit, add, or delete policies at the user level. Each policy has a date associated with it to specify when that policy should take effect.

 

Adding default policies

To create a default policy or set of policies for a time off type:

  1. Add or edit a time off type.
  2. In the Define Default Accrual Policy section, click the + button.

A policy card displays.

  1. If the policy should come into effect on the user's start date, leave the Effective After field as is. If it takes effect later, enter the number of years, months, or days afer their start date the accrual policy should take effect. 

For example, if employees aren't entitled to time off until they've worked a 3 month probation period, you can enter 3 in the first field, and select the Months of service option from the second field.

  1. Click the rule links to select which rules should apply to the policy. For each rule you add, define the parameters that apply to the rule for the policy.
  2. Click the + button again to add additional accrual policies, if your time off allotment is based on the anniversary of each users's start date. A new tier will display on the policy card for each accrual policy. 

Refer to How anniversary-based time off policies work for more information on that topic.

  1. When you've finished setting up all default policies, click the Save button at the bottom of the page.

All default policies will be assigned when you assign the time off type to a user. You can edit, add, or delete policies at the user level.

If you need to delete a rule, hover your cursor over the rule and click the  icon that appears:

 

About the accrual rules

Accrual rules can be assigned to default policies, or can be added to specific policies assigned to users.

There are four types of rules:

  • Starting policy rules - determine the balance as of the policy effective date
  • Accrual rules - schedules automatic additions to the policy’s balance
  • Limitation rules - allows you to enable a reset, maximum balance, cap accruals, or expiry rule
  • Validation rules - allows you to assign booking validation rules to users that prevent submission of bookings if rule criteria isn't met

For some types, you can assign multiple rules within that category.

Refer to the sections below for details on specific rule options.

If you have purchased an Enterprise-level product, we can work with you to create fully customized accrual rules. Contact your Customer Success Manager for more information.

 

Starting policy rules

These rules determine the balance as of the policy effective date. There are currently three rules available – you can only add one.

  • Starting Balance Carry Over

The preceding policy’s end balance will be the new policy's starting balance, but only up to the amount you enter

  • Starting Balance Set To

The balance will be set to the amount you enter

  • Starting Balance Set To with Expiry

The balance will be set to the amount you enter, and you can specify an expiry date for that starting amount. This is typically used if you're moving balance hours into Replicon that are associated with an expiry date.

You can choose to pay out expired hours to the employee. Note that the payout option is only available if you're using hours as a unit, not days.

 

Accrual rules

Schedules automatic additions to the policy’s balance. See the table below for information about certain rules.

Rule

Description

Weekly,
Bi-weekly,
Semi-monthly,
Monthly,
Quarterly,
Semi-annual,
Yearly,
Accrual

You can choose to add accruals that occur weekly, bi-weekly, semi-monthly, monthly, quarterly, semi-annual, or yearly.

Set the following fields:

  • Yearly Entitlement - Enter the total amount the user should accrue for the whole year. This amount will be evenly distributed among the accrual periods. For example, if you enter 15 days and choose a monthly accrual period, the user will accrue 1.25 days each month.
  • On - Choose when the accrual should happen in each accrual period. If you've set the Accrual Period to Annual or Monthly, you can choose to accrue on the anniversary of the user's start date.
  • Proration - Specify whether the accrual should be prorated at the start and end of the policy, just at the start, or not at all. Proration applies when the employee works only part of an accrual period at the beginning or end of a policy. Refer to How time off accruals are prorated for more information.

See information on the On Week option in the bi-weekly rule below.

Bi-Weekly Accrual - On Week option

This type of accrual happens every two weeks. You can choose the day of the week when the accrual occurs, and which sets of weeks accruals fall within:

  • Week 1 - Accruals happen on a fixed schedule that uses July 1 to 7 2018 as a reference week – every second week thereafter is included as part of this 'week'
  • Week 2 - Accruals happen on a fixed schedule that uses July 8 to 14 2018 as a reference week – every second week thereafter is included as part of this 'week'

Choose either the Week 1 or Week 2 option if you want accruals to occur for all employees on the same schedule, or if you want to ensure accruals across policies stay in sync.

If you need to know exactly where the weeks are falling, assign the rule to a user and check their transaction history to confirm accruals are happening when you want them to.

  • 2nd after effective date (default setting) - The first accrual occurs in the second week after the policy begins. For example, if a policy starts on a Friday the 1st and accruals are set for Sundays, the first accrual would occur on Sunday the 10th.

Accruals based on hours worked or paid

 

These rules are useful, for example, if your state's legislation requires that your workers accrue 1 hour of sick time for every 30 hours worked or paid. They may also be useful for allotting time off to employees with variable schedules.

Accrued hours are only added to the employee’s time off balance once the timesheet with the hours worked or paid has been approved.

Once approved, time off hours earned in a week will be added to the employee’s time off balance on a prorated basis; for example, if an employee accrues 1 hour for 30 hours worked, and they work 40 hours in a week, 1.333 hours will be added to their balance for that week, once their timesheet is approved.

For the Accrual Based on Hours Worked rule, you'll need to:

  • Set the accrual rate
  • Include Breaks - Specify whether breaks are included in or excluded from the hours worked total. This includes all breaks, paid or unpaid.
  • Include Time Off - Specify whether time off of any kind is included in or excluded from the hours worked total

For the Accrual Based on Paid Hours rule, you'll need to:

  • Set the accrual rate
  • Exclude Pay Codes - include unpaid time pay codes, to ensure only paid hours are used in the accrual calculation

Accruals based on hours worked in a month

 

This rule accrues monthly the number of hours you define, but only if the employee has worked the number of hours you specified.

Accrual of a percentage of hours worked, in a leave year or timesheet period

 

With these rules, employees accrue a percentage of the work they complete, over the defined time period. You can define what percentage of hours worked will be accrued – this amount defaults to 8%.

Yearly accrual with expiry

 

This rule allows you to set accruals to occur on the employee's half anniversary.

You'd also use this rule if you have yearly accruals that you want to expire after a period of time that you set, and you want the option of paying out once they expire.

You'll need to set the options listed under Basic accrual rules listed above, plus:

  • Expires After - enter the duration after which the time off will expire
  • Units - select the units for the duration in the Expires After field
  • Upon Expiry - choose whether or not the expiring amount will be paid out

Age Based Accrual Rule for Norway

 

This rule applies primarily to Norway, where where employees are allowed additional time off each year starting at age 60.

Limitation rules

Allows you to enable a reset, maximum balance, cap accruals, or expiry rule. See the table below for information about certain rules.​

Rule

Description

Reset rules

Enable Reset rules to schedule automatic resets of the policy’s time off balance. You can set resets to occur on a weekly, bi-weekly, semi-monthly, monthly, quarterly, semi-annual, or yearly basis.

  • Reset On ... - choose when the reset should occur in the period
  • Reset Type - choose the value of the balance after the reset (Set To) or the maximum balance that will be retained after the reset (Carry Up To)
  • Reset Amount - the number of days or hours to reset the balance to

Maximum balance rules

Enable the Max Balance Limit rule to set the maximum amount of time off a user can accumulate for this time off type. You'll need to enter the maximum hours in the Maximum Balance field.

 

Cap accruals rules

Enable Cap Accruals for the Year to prevent users from accruing more than the amount you specify. For example, you could limit users to accruing 48 hours of sick time.

You can choose the start date for the year; it can be the calendar year, a fiscal year, or be based on the user's anniversary.

This rule would commonly only be used when time off accruals are based on hours worked or paid (e.g. worker accrues 1 hour of sick time per 30 hours worked).

Expiry rules

Enable the Yearly Carry Over with Expiry rule to set an annual balance reset, with hours that are carried over expiring after a duration you set. You'll need to set the month and day of the month, plus complete these additional fields:

  • Carry Up To - enter the maximum number of hours that will be retained after the reset
  • Expires After - enter the duration after which the time off will expire
  • Units - select the units for the duration in the Expires After field
  • Upon Expiry - choose whether or not the expiring amount will be paid out

Expiry happens on the last day of the expiry period. For example, if you have a carry over on Jan 1 that expires in 3 months, the expiry will be dated for Mar 31. Employees will be able to take that time off up to and including Mar 31.

Consider enabling the Reminder of upcoming time off expiry notification to users assigned this rule.

 

Validation rules

Allows you to assign booking validation rules to users that prevent submission of bookings if rule criteria isn't met.

Refer to Setting up time off booking validations for information on the default rules available.

 

FAQs

What happens if we don’t set up a policy for a time off type?

You have to set up a time off policy if you need to define a time off type’s balance. If a user can take unlimited time off against a type, no accrual policy is needed.

As long as a time off type is assigned to a user, they can enter time against it. If the type has no policy in effect, the initial time off balance will be zero.

How do I correct an error in a policy?

If the error is in a future policy, you can simply edit the policy and make the changes. However, if the policy has already taken effect, it cannot be edited. To correct the error, you can calculate what the user's balance should be, as of today. Then, create a new policy, effective today, with the following rules:

  • A starting policy rule set to match the balance you calculated
  • Additional rules set to the correct accrual and reset values

With this new policy in place, the user will have the correct balance and accruals going forward.

Can a reset and an accrual occur on the same day?

Yes. If an accrual and a reset are scheduled for the same day, the reset occurs first, and then the accrual.

You might need to set up a policy like this if, for example, time off accrues monthly on the first of the month, and resets annually on January 1st.

Do resets and accruals occur on a policy's effective date?

If a reset or accrual is scheduled for the same day as the policy’s effective date, the reset and accrual will both still occur. First the initial balance is set and then the reset and accrual occur.

How can we prevent users from booking off time they don’t have available?

To prevent users from overdrawing their balance, add the Validate that balance is not in overdraw booking validation to the time off type.

Can you use time off on the day it expires?

Yes, employees can use time off on the expiry date, although their balance summary for the booking may indicate that 0 days remain, even if time off is available and expiring that day.