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What is the Best PTO Tracking Software? 7 Top Options

10 min read

Keeping track of employee vacations, leaves, sick days, and remote work can be challenging. It might take up a lot of time and resources that could otherwise be allocated to more critical projects.

Fortunately, employers and employees no longer need to put up with this tedious process! With PTO tracking software, time off management is easier than ever.

A great PTO software will allow employees to send time off requests digitally. Employers can approve or deny them on their own time. It saves HR, managers, and employees hours of admin. In this post, we’ll cover the pros and cons of top PTO software.

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 What is PTO Tracking Software?

PTO tracking software offers an automated system for leave management. Employees send time off requests to the designated admin for approval.

Through the employee portal, employees can who is currently available in-office. Visual calendar displays ensure that managers keep track of employees on leave, in the office, and working remotely.

Companies can create custom leave policies, communicate them effectively, and enforce them equitably with PTO software.

Organizations that adopt time off tracking software have a clear competitive advantage against those using excel sheets or other outdated PTO tracker tools. Now let’s look at why organizations, employers, employees, and admins need a PTO tracker and the options available.

How to Build a PTO Tracker?

Employee vacation tracking systems come in various forms, including paper-based methods, Excel spreadsheets, or digital platforms equipped with specialized software. You could, however, establish your own PTO Tracking System by following these steps.

Step 1: Formulate Your Policies

Before implementing any tracking system, it’s crucial to have clear policies in place for your employees to follow. Address these key questions:

  • Define the purpose of Paid Time Off (PTO): Specify whether it covers vacation, sick leave, personal time, or time off to care for dependents.

  • Determine PTO eligibility criteria: Identify which employee categories qualify, such as full-time, part-time, seasonal, interns, and contract workers.

  • Specify additional types of time-off to be tracked: This may include bereavement leave, volunteer hours, voting days, and paid holidays. Clarity in the policy eliminates ambiguity and ensures smooth implementation.

Step 2: Define Your Accrual Method

With your policies in place, it’s time to establish more detailed guidelines:

  • Set the annual PTO allocation: Determine how many PTO days your organization offers each year.

  • Choose an accrual method: Decide between methods like an annual PTO bank or incremental accrual, where days accumulate over time.

  • Consider adjusting accrual rates based on years of service: For instance, employees with fewer than four years of service might receive 21 days, which increases to 26 days after four years.

  • Address whether PTO can carry over to the next year or expires: Some companies impose caps, like 300 hours, while others reset unused PTO at year-end.

  • Decide if exempt and non-exempt employees accrue PTO differently: Ensure equity in PTO policies.

Step 3: Clarify the Request Process

Now, focus on day-to-day procedures and communication:

  • Determine the notice period required for requesting PTO.

  • Specify whether PTO requests need management approval.

  • Identify blackout dates when PTO is unavailable.

  • Set limits on the number of employees who can be off simultaneously.

  • Define responsibilities: Decide whether the manager or the employee requesting time off is responsible for finding coverage.

  • Address partial-day requests: Explain how half-day requests will be managed.

  • Consider seasonality: Adjust policies based on peak business periods, which may require stricter rules.

Step 4: Utilize an Employee Vacation Tracker Tool

It gets tricky here. We could tell you that Excel, or paper, would work, but we won’t. Because we know that while traditional Excel spreadsheets and paper-based systems have been used for years, investing in a dedicated PTO tracking software offers substantial advantages that significantly outweigh these outdated methods. We explain why.

 Why Use a PTO Tracking Software

There are a number of reasons businesses prefer to use PTO tracking software in place of more antiquated time-off management systems. Here are some of the critical advantages PTO tracking software offers:

PTO Tracker Software offers Centralized Data

All paid time off requests are stored in a single platform. This unifies the employee database so that administrators can find details of employees at any point in time.

This centralization is crucial to ensuring a smooth process. It also allows businesses to plan in advance and delegate responsibility to make up for one employee’s absence.

Centralization of data also prevents misinformation and confusion. Everyone knows when a team member is on leave, which makes it easier to manage the allotted work.

Transparency Is No Longer an Issue

This software tracks how much leave employees have accrued, how much they have used, and how much they have left in their allowance.

It therefore limits the effects of human error and the normal delays that happen when HR staff needs to process large amounts of data manually.

Most importantly, it adds transparency so that employees can view how much leave they have left and plan accordingly. They’ll be notified when managers approve or deny their time off requests so they can modify their request or get ready to enjoy their PTO!

Meanwhile, managers and team leaders can stay on top of upcoming leave plans without drowning in admin. It’s a win-win!

PTO Tracking Software Improves Productivity

Tired of receiving leave requests by email, by text message, by carrier pigeon? With PTO tracking software, admins can find all employee time off requests in the same place.

Employees won’t have to follow up about PTO requests or worry about meeting a manager to get their leave approved.

With PTO tracking in place, employees can spend less time worrying about their time off requests and instead focus on their work. This frees up time and reduces mental clutter, allowing better workplace productivity, which is excellent for projects, deadlines, and creating a healthy office environment in general.

Using the right PTO tracking software will boost employee morale and productivity.

Save On Costs Associated with Manual Processing

Businesses must seize any opportunity to reduce costs. Irrespective of the number of employees, the manual processing of paid time off requests and its associated paperwork always has a higher cost than using software that automates the process.

The comprehensive functionalities like an all-in-one dashboard offers many options to keep track of the employees. Easily track which projects will be affected by the PTO, allowing teams to make the necessary arrangements. This saves organizations high costs that they would otherwise incur.

A Much Needed Break From Admin Tasks

PTO software can make the tedious process of approving time off easier for admins. Employers relying on sticky notes, excels, and infinite mail chains to keep track of PTO requests probably feel stressed. Further, they are probably not providing employees with the experience they want.

Manual time off management may lead to errors, burnout, and confusion. Sdmins may also have to deal with last-minute requests, rearrangements, and a rush to meet deadlines.

PTO tracker software makes this process much more straightforward, ensuring that employees get the vacation they deserve. And that those in managerial positions get a break too.

PTO Tracking Software Offers Flexibility

Employees and managers will both appreciate the flexibility that good PTO tracking software provides.

With multiple channel accessibility, employees can update their leave plans from anywhere. Approvers and admins can view these requests and approve them on their own time.

This takes away a lot of stress with both sides, making PTO requests simple and easy to track. It offers everyone the flexibility to access records and manage time-off requests from anywhere.

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 The Top 7 PTO Tracking Softwares

Here are our top picks for PTO Tracker software that could help transform PTO management for any organization. Taking time off is vital for employee health, and PTO software make it easier than ever to organize.

With that in mind, it’s time to address the top 7 PTO tracking software, their features, pros, and cons:

1.   Factorial HR

Factorial is our top pick for PTO management software. This enterprising start-up offers everything a company needs to manage leaves a streamlined dashboard.

Factorial integrates its powerful time tracking tool with an all-in-one suite of HR process. With employee time tracking, performance management, and payroll reporting, Factorial allows employers to gain invaluable insights into their workforce.

With over 80,000 companies using it, Factorial is a trusted PTO manager that tackles the issues that businesses most often face.


  • Manage sick days, vacation days, and more with automated vacation requests.
  • Easily view accrued vacation time, time used up, and the number of remaining vacation days.
  • Create custom time off policies to meet your business’s needs.
  • Implement unlimited policies for different leave types.
  • Enforce custom time-off policies equitably.
  • Gain insight into employee absences with a visual calendar view that shows all leaves at a glance.
  • Track time off by team, making sure that each team is staffed adequately to meet demand.
  • One-click approval or rejection of leave requests
  • Designate supervisors for time-off request management.
  • Create custom absence categories as per organization needs.
  • Configure time off management permission with manager roles, edit roles after submission, etc.
  • Custom time of data specific groups, teams, and annual and monthly summaries
  • Mobile app allows flexible and accessible requests to employees with real-time updates to the employee portal
  • Allows Sync with Google calendar
  • Allows vacation by the hour and hourly absence management for recurring cycle creation and carryover of leaves


Flexible pricing allows you to choose a plan based on your needs.

  • Manage basic processes for up to 20 employees at $3 per employee
  • Business plan prices at $4 per employee help the management of advanced and custom processes for up to 100 employees
  • Enterprise custom plan is adapted and priced according to your needs for unlimited employees

Factorial is perfect for small, medium-sized, and rapidly scaling businesses, making sure you get the best out of your PTO software.

2.   Zoho People

Zoho People offers companies a robust way to manage time-off applications. With ten critical language support and customizable formats, it can suit businesses of many sizes and nationalities.


  • Good user interface
  • Cloud-based
  • Excellent knowledge base with training and documentation
  • 360-degree feedback with automated scheduling
  • Benefits management
  • Calendar management
  • Contractor management


  • Customized pricing starts at $1 per feature per employee

Despite the number of features, some users have reported difficulty in managing and navigating. The mobile version can get a bit glitchy at times, and some features are not optimized, like vacation and sick hours tracking.

3.   UKG Pro

This platform helps users manage paid time offs at an affordable rate. Furhter, with fantastic customer service and easy to configure applications, it is excellent for smaller companies.


  • Easy access to information
  • Easy to set up
  • The mobile app allows for seamless management on the road
  • Flexible and customizable
  • It has a solid cloud-based HR suite solution


UKG has to be contacted for a quote for features that you need

This is a good option for smaller companies. The lack of customization options and the cluttered interface is a concern for some users, while the interface is not

intuitive. Overall, it is apt for a small business that just needs the basic functionality.

4.   GoCo

GoCo is a user-friendly PTO management software that handles vacation and time off, allowing you to streamline the process. With the management of multiple types of leaves and unlimited PTO policies, this software is certainly a good option.


  • Simplifies leave tracking with instant alerts to managers via the GoCo platform inbox and mobile alerts.
  • Approval is quick and user friendly
  • Tracking system notifies employees about approvals in real-time
  • Separate PTOs from other leave types
  • Magic Docs for policy changes for even individual performance-based policies


GoCo starts at $5 per employee per month and offers customized quotes as per the organization requirements.

It is a good platform, but others offer the same features for a lower cost. There have been a few glitches with incomplete functionality and UI that were not optimized, but otherwise, it is a good choice.

5.   CakeHR

This PTO tracking software is straightforward to navigate and offers a decent amount of functionality to companies looking to expand beyond traditional PTO management methods.


  • Employee self-service
  • Creating and scheduling meetings and timesheets
  • Easy to manage for admins and HR professionals


The pricing is customized based on the number of employees you have and the modules you want to opt for. The minimum of at $5.5 per employee per month with a single employee and a single module .

CakeHR is definitely a good pick for small to medium-sized enterprises, although they lack features that bigger enterprises require, like historical data that has to be manually handled.

6. BambooHR

The bambooHR time-off management software is an intuitive option for many organizations looking to speed up their PTO process for both employees and admin.


  • Time off calculator ensures that employees and employers are always up to speed on the number of leaves available.
  • Quick approval and denial due to reminders and notifications
  • Mobile and web access for on the go flexibility
  • Customize with policy changes that suit your organisation
  • Who’s Out calendar to keep track of employees on leave for adequate staffing needs.


You will have to request a customized price quote and figure out the ROI.

The robust platform is has a ton of functionalities for large-scale enterprises, although users say it can difficult to onboard and to learn how to use the software. Employees also complain that the interface isn’t very functional.

7.   Jibble

Jibble is an all-in-one PTO software that helps small to medium-sized enterprises meet their needs with a leave management tool.


  • Fulfills leave and time management needs
  • Simple and efficient
  • Reporting tools to stay up to date on employee availability and leaves availed
  • Analysis of historical data, present attendance rates, and more


There is a free plan for attendance, GPS and timesheet reporting, a premium plan at $1.50 per user per month, and an ultimate plan at $3 per user per month. For an organization with more than 100 users, Jibble offers customized plans.

Jibble is a good option. Users have reported that it does not integrate with other software management systems, which might affect large enterprises, but that is the only downside.

 Considerations While Choosing a PTO Tracking Software

Software to track PTO is a substantial investment, so here is what employers should keep in mind.

  • Invest in software that is intuitive and easy to use
  • Get software that allows users to connect via mobile apps, web browsers, and so on.
  • Make sure the software has a dashboard to keep track of employees
  • Quick notifications are a must have
  • You’ll need to ability to tailor permissions and time off policies to suit your needs
  • Ensure your software allows you to view teams impacted and helps you take the steps needed to ensure adequate staffing.
  • Affordability and return on investment are crucial while deciding on a PTO tracker software.
  • Make sure the software accounts for different types of leaves

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What is the difference between PTO and vacation?

PTO refers to Paid Time Off, which is much more valuable to employees than simply being given vacation days without pay.

Should a business use PTO management software?

Using a PTO management system definitely gives businesses an edge. It not only allows organizations to make more efficient staffing decisions, deadlines, and overtime. It also removes human error from the equation.

Do PTO Tracking Software Affect Employee productivity?

PTO tracker softwares can have a positive impact on employees as they are not prone to being overworked. They can keep track of leaves and plan them, reducing stress associated with approvals and preventing overworking.

 Are You Ready to Invest in a PTO Software?

PTO tracking software is a great way to make sure you ease the burden on admin and employees while maintaining office productivity at an all-time high. Make sure to invest in the right software that offers you the maximum benefits, and you can take a leave from the hectic workload too.

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