Team Vacation Planner (Excel) - Step by Step User Guide
Modified on: Tue, 5 May, 2020 at 4:37 PM
Overview of Steps
Before using the template, it is recommended that you are familiar with Excel tables.
Assuming you know how to enter data in Excel tables, let’s move forward to the overview of steps.
Enter Planning period
Enter Number of Employees needed per weekday
Enter Company holidays
Enter List of Employees and their information
Enter dates of Vacation planned by the employees
View Calendar to see if there are any understaffed days
View Report to see summary of understaffed days by month.
Detailed Step by Step Instructions
Step 1: Choose Planning Period
The template allows planning for up to 366 days. We can choose any start and end date, that accounts to less than 366 days.
In the example above, we have entered Jan 1st to Oct 15th as Planning period.
Step 2: Set Number of Employees needed by Weekday
In some companies, the number of employees needed at work can be the same every day. However, in other companies, there may be a varying need based on the day of the week.
For example, in a company that provides Customer Service 7 days a week, more customers may be calling in during Saturday/Sunday compared to other weekdays. In such a scenario, we need more employees at work during Saturday/Sunday.
This template allows you to customize to handle such scenarios that easily. For each weekday, we can set the number of employees needed.
If we enter 0 as Employees Needed, then the template assumes that as weekend day. In the above image, Saturday and Sunday will be considered as Weekends (for reporting purpose).
During weekends, employees will not be available to work.
Step 3: Enter list of company holidays
Next, we enter a list of holidays in our company.
Holidays are days when company does not operate. Hence, Employees Needed will be automatically set to 0. Similarly, employees will also be set as unavailable.
We can enter any number of days as holidays.
Step 4: Enter list of Employees & their information
We enter the information about employees in the Employees table.
We enter the name of employee, hire date and termination date (if the employee has left the company).
As this template is designed to be used for long planning periods, we know that new employees may join and current employees may leave midway. Also, if you have contract employees, these situations are more likely. Instead of using a new file to change available employees, you can just update the hire date and termination date where applicable, in the same file. The template will use this information and calculate available capacity automatically.
We can also handle varying work schedules of employees. For example, Employee 2 and Employee 4 do not work on Saturdays , but other employees do. We can just enter No for any weekday an employee doesn’t work.
Step 5: Enter Dates of Vacation planned by Employees
In the Vacations sheet, we enter the vacation planned by employees.
This is very simple. Enter Employee name, Vacation Start and Vacation End dates.
If an employee takes only one day off, please enter same date as Start and End dates. Please do not leave the End date empty.
As the employees takes more vacation, just add new rows to this table.
There is no limit to how many vacations can be entered.
This completes our data entry steps.
Step 6: View Calendar to see availability by day
The Calendar sheet is fully automated.
At the top of the sheet, we see the Availability Summary.
It shows the following information for each day in our planning period.
Day – If it is a Holiday, you will see HOL. If it is Weekend day, WKD and if it is a working day WRK
Employees Needed: This shows how many employees are needed at work on that day.
If the day is a holiday, then this will be set to 0.
Otherwise, this will be the number of employees needed for that weekday (that we entered in Step 2 of data entry in the Settings sheet)
Employees Available: This reflects how many employees are available to work on the day.
If the day is a holiday, this will be set to 0.
If the day is a weekend, this will be set to 0.
It will take into account, the Employees’ hire statuses, Employees’ work schedules on that weekday and vacations planned by employees .
Employees on Vacation: This is how many employees who are employed on that day, but have taken a vacation.
If it is a holiday, this will be set to 0.
If the day is a weekend, this will be set to 0.
Otherwise, this will reflect the count of employees who have planned vacations for that day.
Availability – Needed: This tells us whether we are understaffed or overstaffed or right-staffed.
This is just the difference between Employees Available and Employees Needed. If it is negative, we are understaffed (availability is less than need). If it is positive, we are overstaffed (availability is greater than need). If it is 0, we have the right number of staff (availability equals need).
We will see a red flag where there is under-staffing.
We can also create a similar flag for over-staffing if needed. We have to edit the conditional formatting rules to do that.
By knowing which days are understaffed or overstaffed, we can take actions accordingly. If we are understaffed, we can either increase capacity by hiring more permanent or temporary employees.
We can also see each employee’s availability on the calendar.
Green indicates the employee is available to work
Red indicates the employee is on vacation
Purple indicates a holiday
Gray indicates the employee is not working that day (Weekend or the employee does not work on that weekday)
This calendar is set up to handle 50 employees for 366 days.
Step 7: View Report to see monthly summary of availability
The Report sheet is also fully automated. It will show the overall summary and summary of availability by month.
We can see, for each month, the number of days in month, holidays, weekends, working days and understaffed days.
% Days Understaffed = (Understaffed Days / Working Days)
This sheet is set up as print-ready. You can print and share with team. You can also export to PDF and share PDF.