ESS Leave Tool

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The Employee Self Service leave request tool is now available to state agencies. This application provides employees the ability to request leave and managers the ability to approve leave online, through the Employee Self Service portal.

The Leave Tool improves process efficiency

Pilot implementations at the former Department of Personnel (11/2010) and the Office of the Insurance Commissioner (4/2011) were highly successful. Since opening the application to all state agencies in March 2012, WaTech has implemented the Leave Tool for over 40 agencies. See list of agencies using the Leave Tool.

Both employees and supervisors find the leave tool intuitive and easy to use. It can significantly reduce paperwork and shorten the turn-around time for leave approval. It also increases efficiency. The Payroll offices have reported up to a 67% reduction in the time needed to enter leave into HRMS.

How does the online leave tool work?


  • Employees access the leave tool through Employee Self Service (ESS)
  • Employees can see real time leave balances
  • Employees cannot submit a leave request if it exceeds their available leave balance
  • If an employee submits a leave request that spans a range of dates, the leave request tool automatically populates the leave hours requested with the employee’s daily scheduled hours, therefore, partial day requests must be entered on a day-to-day basis
  • When an employee submits a leave request, it is automatically routed to his/her supervisor for approval, and an email is generated notifying the supervisor that a leave request has been submitted


  • Supervisors also access the leave request tool through ESS.
  • A supervisor can go to a work list to select and approve or reject leave requests
  • Supervisors can also review a “team calendar” to view all leave that has been submitted by their employees
  • When a supervisor approves or rejects a leave request, an email notification is automatically sent to the employee
  • Supervisors and managers can submit/approve leave requests on behalf of their employees
  • Approved leave requests are automatically posted directly into HRMS (no need for manual entry)

Tools and Information for learning more about the Leave Tool