When an employee requests a leave of absence it can stir up a variety of emotions for HR and People Ops pros. There’s empathy for the employee trying to navigate a potentially difficult or significant (or both) life event outside of the office. There’s uncertainty around keeping your organization compliant throughout the process and adhering to the latest leave of absence laws. There’s the dread of all the administrative tasks you’ve got in front of you as you support, monitor, and track their journey from start to re-boarding.
On top of that, timeliness is a critical factor. Let’s take FMLA for example. Employees are responsible for notifying their employer and adhering to deadlines associated with FMLA leave, such as providing a 30-day notice for anticipated leave and submitting a completed medical certification within 15 calendar days of your request. However, it is equally crucial for employers to understand their own notice obligations concerning FMLA leave, the order in which these notices must be issued, and their respective deadlines.
To continue on the FMLA example, if you determine an employee is eligible for FMLA leave, you must provide the employee with notice of their FMLA rights and responsibilities at the same time that the Notice of Eligibility is provided.
Let’s say you’re operating in the great state of Colorado and you’re supporting your first employee leave request that involves the new Colorado FAMLI program. You’ve gone through the process of looking up the employee’s demographic data, you’ve determined they’re FMLA eligible, you’ve sent out the notice within 5 days, the employee has met the deadline for providing a medical certification…now what?
Well the FAMLI program states:
“Eligible individuals can start receiving benefits beginning in 2024, and will use My FAMLI+ to submit their applications. A claimant can open a planned FAMLI Leave of any kind 30 days prior to the first date of the absence and up to 30 days after an absence. FAMLI benefits will never be issued before the first date of absence and will often be issued in arrears, going back to the first date of absence.
If you have a planned absence due to a scheduled surgery or the birth of a child, you can file your claim in advance.”
Aside from needing to know all of the details of the program itself, i.e. how much pay your employee is entitled to and job protection lengths, you also need to make sure they’re submitting their application to the Colorado FAMLI program, and doing so on time. Failure to do so could result in a lack of benefit coverage and could impact your employee’s life negatively.
If you’re manually tracking leaves in a spreadsheet, or relying on an insurance carrier to navigate these state programs for you, you’re running a major risk of important dates your employees need to hit falling through the cracks.
Regulations and requirements differ from state to state, so between familiarizing yourself with the ever-changing laws, to sending deadline reminders and verifying completion, the entire process becomes an administrative dumpster fire when you don’t have tools or systems that automate the process for you.
The best solution for tracking leaves of absence will automate the entire process and provide you and your employees with all of the information needed to hit key deadlines. It should do this while ensuring compliance with the latest federal, state, and local leave law regulations, and set all parties involved for a successful leave journey.
Tilt’s leave of absence technology automates the FMLA eligibility determination process by syncing directly with your HRIS and delivering a comprehensive, personalized leave plan for every employee you have taking a leave.
Tilt’s platform automatically provides your eligible employees with their FMLA rights and responsibilities, lays out every program they need to apply for and by when, allows for direct and secure file uploads, tracks the progress of their pre-leave, on-leave, and return-to-work journey, and provides reminders for important upcoming deadline dates.
If a deadline is approaching and your employee still hasn’t completed a step, a dedicated, 1-1 human (AKA our Leave Success Managers, AKA our Empathy Warriors) reaches out to them directly to both remind them and underscore the significance of meeting the deadline. Our Leave Success Managers will even work directly with states and all carriers should any involvement be required.
Every leave in your organization is updated in real-time in your HR dashboard. This way you have a window into the status of your employees’ leaves at any given time. No more updating spreadsheets. No more calling your carrier to check your employee’s status only to reach a call center or a robo-operator.
Leaves are a human experience, and Tilt has cracked the code on how to give leave some love while providing HR and People Ops teams with an automated tracking system that removes all your previous pain points.
Tracking leaves is about more than keeping tabs of when an employee is on leave and plans to return from leave. Though while we’re on the subject Tilt makes that easy too…
Accurate tracking of your leave is required by law, so should your organization run into an issue where an audit is required, unless you have Tilt you’re likely putting a lot of faith in the accuracy of a manually uploaded spreadsheet.
Tilt knows all of this of course because we have a team of in-house leave law experts who nerd out on all things leave. Does that make us a little weird? Maybe, but your C-suite and L&C teams will never be more thankful for a team of nerds ensuring you stay compliant in the ever-changing world of leave.
We recommend bookmarking this page for our quarterly Leave Law Reports so you can always stay in the know right along with us.
Another fun fact about leaves is that they’re a bit like snowflakes in the sense that if you aren’t prepared it can be a very cold experience and no two are the same. A leave of absence can take unexpected twists and turns that can be confusing, scary, and daunting for an employee or someone in HR to wrap their head around.
Tilt’s leave law experts support our Tilters so should the most unexpected scenario arise, you can rest assured that you’re being guided by the brightest leave law minds out there and that any important dates that might shift for any reason will still be met.
The mountain of to-dos on your plate isn’t going to magically disappear, but with Tilt, you can take one massive administrative headache off the top to have it look more like a molehill. Tilt guides and supports your employees throughout their leave journey, automatically tracking their progress, and ensuring key deadlines are hit. Say no to more spreadsheets. Say no more confusion. Say yes more love for leave!
Tilt is leading the charge in all things leave of absence management through easy-to-use tech and human touch. Since 2017, our proprietary platform and Empathy Warriors have been helping customers make leave not suck by eliminating administrative burdens, keeping companies compliant, and providing a truly positive and supportive leave of absence experience for their people.
© 2022 Tilt