Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Time Off Request

Time Off Request
Time Off Request,
originally uploaded by b3ardman.

I get round to booking time off today, which is done through the timesheet system.
What a terrible screen this is.

The required fields all have default values in them. This is one of my pet peeves. If something is required, it should either be blank or have a 'special' value in it, such as 'Select From Date'. How else can the computer tell if it's been filled in?

Time Off Code? What? These are all human readable values ('Bereavement', 'Holiday', 'Flexi leave'). I think this should be labelled 'Reason for Request', or something like that.
The default value for the Time Off Code (if there has to be one) is 'Bereavement'. So far, in 6 years of working live, I've taken precisely zero days off for 'Bereavement'. I've taken far more days off for Holiday than anything else, so why not default it to that?

From and To dates - now these really pissed me off. For one thing, they default to today's date. I'm in work, sitting at my desk, and the computer thinks I want to book today off. Also, I'm contractually obliged to give 2 weeks' notice of holiday requests.
Then, I select the From date (I have to click the little calendar to do this). Fine. I click to select the To date, and it show's today's date, rather than the from date I just selected (which it is also showing in the To date field). Argh!

I haven't used the Comments field. I can see, in certain situations, it may be necessary, but for the greater part, it's entirely superfluous. This said, it's still the largest field on the screen, and it's entirely optional. My preference would be to show a full calendar for the From and To date fields, and have a much smaller 'Comments' field.

Finally, the note about 'Partial days' is entirely superfluous as the system only allows you to book partial days on the first and last days of the request.

Sorry, did I say I read Krugg's Don't Make Me Think recently?

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