You can also approve and decline leave in the Deputy iOS app.

Note: The ability to see and approve leave requests is restricted to the managers of the employee on leave, including any direct supervisors, and system administrators.

What We’ll Cover

Awareness of Leave

  • See pending and approved leave requests
  • Notifications for new leave requests
  • Viewing leave in an employee profile

Leave Management and Approval

  • Declining leave
  • Leave approval workflow
  • How leave hours are determined
  • When an employee is already scheduled for the requested time

Timesheets and Pay

  • Leave timesheets
  • Exporting leave

Awareness of Leave

Being aware of what leave has been requested, as well as what’s been approved is important when it comes to managing leave efficiently. Deputy helps you see pending and approved leave requests, notifies you of requests, and shows leave requests in employee profiles.

See pending and approved leave requests

  • Dashboard
  • Schedule
  • Reports


You can see anyone who’s currently on leave, and catch up with any requests awaiting approval in your Me tab’s Dashboard. People currently on leave will be listed under “What’s happening?” Awaiting requests will be listed under “Needs Approval.” 


When you view your schedule by employee, approved leave will appear in each day of the roster as a solid red box. Leave still awaiting approval will appear as a dotted red box. Depending on the permissions for your role, you may not be able to schedule someone for a date on which they have approved leave. 


In the Reports tab, you can use the Time Off & Schedules report to see pending (light red) and approved (dark red)leave requests for the selected time period. It will also represent any unavailability (yellow) and scheduled shifts (blue). Filter your view by location and date in the upper left. Any leave awaiting approval is always listed on the right, regardless of visible date range. 

More information on Reports.

Notifications for new leave requests

Who is notified of a request?

When requesting leave, employees choose a manager to approve their request. This can be anyone directly above them in the reporting hierarchy, including supervisors. You can limit the types of leave certain employees can see in both Premium and Enterprise.

How are Managers notified?

The manager (or supervisor) will then be notified of the request in three ways.

  • Email
  • Push notification on mobile
  • Notification in Deputy toolbar


The approving manager will receive an email from Deputy detailing the request, with a button to view it on Deputy.

Push notification on mobile

If notifications are allowed for Deputy, the approving manager will receive a push notification on devices with the Deputy app installed.

Notification in Deputy toolbar

On the web, the Global tab in the Deputy toolbar will display a red badge totaling any new notifications.

Viewing leave in an employee profile

If you know that an employee has submitted a leave request for approval, but they didn’t choose to notify you, you can still approve it by finding it in their profile, in the People tab. 

  • Click View by their name
  • Click Leave
  • Click View next to the pending request
  • Decline Leave or Approve Leave

The History tab at the top of each leave request lets you audit all actions taken on that request. 

Leave Management and Approval

Now that you know all the ways to find leave requests, we’ll cover how to decline and approve, split or two-step approval, how leave hours are determined for timesheets, and what to do if an employee is already scheduled for the requested time.

Declining leave

To decline a leave request, choose Decline Leave as shown below.

Leave a comment explaining to the employee the reason for declining the leave, and click Decline & Notify Employee. Deputy will notify the employee by email and push notification, and the status of the request and your comment will be visible to them in both the notification, and their “Me” tab.

Leave approval workflow

Depending on your reporting hierarchy, you may have one person (usually a manager or above) who approves leave requests, or two people who approve the requested date range and leave type separately. In this 2-step approval workflow, the date range of the request is approved by a supervisor, then the type of leave requested is approved by a manager above the supervisor. We’ll cover both workflows here, starting with 2-Step approval, where a supervisor must approve the date first.

2-Step approval

How Supervisors Approve Date Range Only

Supervisors can only approve the date range of the leave request, not the leave type. In Deputy Enterprise, you can make new roles with customized access levels and permissions. Roles that are able to approve the date range only can be configured in the Enterprise tab, under Access Levels & Permissions.

How Managers (and above) Approve Leave Type Only

Once the Supervisor has approved the date range of the leave request, the next step is for the Manager, or another role above the Supervisor to approve the leave type.

When viewing the leave request, you will see that only the date has been approved. Below, are options to decline, or approve and notify the employee.

How Location Managers and Above Approve Leave

Managers and above are able to approve leave without any other party’s approval needed. You can approve it quickly using two clicks, or you can adjust pay, time, and leave type before approving. We’ll explore both methods here.

Approving quickly for paid, working days only

Click Approve Leave. If the request’s date range doesn’t include unpaid non-working days, and the leave type is appropriate, you can click Approve & Notify Employee.

Assigning leave type and accounting for non-working days

Once you’ve clicked Approve Leave, you can scroll down for more info about the requested date range, and the leave type. For leave requests that include unpaid, non-working days (typically weekends), deselect any days that the employee would not normally work.

Adjusting leave type

You can adjust the leave type for any of the days within the request, as well as adjust the typical work hours that would be paid for the request. In the below example, Arnie has jury duty, but has requested to use vacation days for this leave. See how Arnie’s manager adjusts the leave type for the selected days using the menu at the top of the leave type column. You can also adjust leave type and working hours for each individual day.

How leave hours are determined

When approving leave, you will see start and end times for each day of the request. These times will apply to the resulting timesheets for those days, and are based on either: 

  • Default shift length in your location settings
  • Standard hours in the employment term

Default shift length in your location settings

If the employee who’s leave you’re approving doesn’t have an employment term assigned to them, the leave hours are based on your location’s open time, plus the default shift duration, minus the default meal break duration.

You can set open time, shift duration and meal break duration in the Scheduling section of each location's settings as shown below.

In this example, the location open time is 9am, and the default shift duration is 8 hours with a default meal break of 60 minutes.

9am + 8 hrs = 5pm - 60 min = 4pm

This means the leave time will be 9am - 4pm, and that the employee will be paid for 7.00 hours on each timesheet.

Note: Make sure these details are correct before approving leave. If the leave is in the past, approving it will generate a new timesheet for each day in the request, and any incorrect information will need to be corrected on each individual timesheet.

Standard hours in the employment term

If you use Deputy to calculate pay, then you’ve assigned employment terms to your employees. Employment terms include an employee's typical work days, hours, pay conditions such as regular and overtime, and Leave Conditions such as vacation, unpaid PTO, sick, and FMLA leave. You can make adjustments to employment terms by editing an employee profile, and clicking on Pay Rates.

Adding Employment Terms in Enterprise

In Enterprise, you can create your own standard hours which will apply when approving leave hours.

Here, you can determine the start and end times, break duration, and leave deduction.

When an employee is already scheduled for the requested time

The employee requesting leave may be scheduled during the date requested. Whether the employee is applying for sick days missed in the recent past, or a last minute request in the near future, Deputy will notify you of the scheduled shifts on the request.

When you  click Approve Leave, you will be presented with 3 options:

  • Keep in shifts
  • Remove from shifts
  • Make open

Keep in shifts

In the below example, Arnie missed work the day before because he was sick. The shift is in the past, so there’s no reason to remove him. Because he never clocked in, no timesheet was generated, and this leave approval will create a timesheet for that day with the standard hours.

Remove from shifts

In the next example, Benn needs to take the day off to care for his child. The request is in a few days, and he has shifts scheduled during that time. Selecting Remove Benn from shifts will make his scheduled shifts empty. 

Because Benn’s shifts are now empty, you will need to assign them in the schedule. As shown below, recommended* employees will appear at the top of “Who is working?” Non-recommended employees will follow, and a yellow dot will appear below their name, with a reason. Aaisha is the obvious choice because she has the fewest scheduled hours of all employees recommended to work the shift. You can also choose Open Shift, which we’ll discuss next.

*Recommendation is based on a 5 factors:

  1. Overlapping Shifts
  2. Training
  3. Unavailability
  4. Approved Leave
  5. Stress Profiles

Make open

Let your workforce find a replacement for you by clicking Make open. This will automatically change the shift in the schedule to “open,” and notify all recommended employees of this newly available open shift. Any recommended employee can volunteer for the shift.

Note: SMS charges will only apply if you choose to notify by SMS messages. You can notify by Email and push notification at no extra cost.

Timesheets and Pay

Leave timesheets

If the leave is in the future and is approved, timesheets will automatically generate at the start time of the first day of the request, and continue as each day of the request passes. 

Exporting leave

Leave can be exported to ADP Run, ADP Workforce Now, Xero (AUS), MYOB, SmartPayroll, and more

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