Skip to main content
Responding to Shift Drop Requests

How to handle employee requests for unavailability

James Denham avatar
Written by James Denham
Updated over a week ago

If you’ve enabled Shift Drop Requests on your account, you may receive notifications from staff requesting to drop a specific shift.

You'll be notified of the request by email, SMS and/or push notification through the app, depending on your account settings.


When you access RotaCloud on a desktop, you’ll receive a notification of the request. This will show in the upper-right corner of the system. Click the notification bell to respond to the request.

You can also respond to them on the Rotas page itself. Click the relevant shift on the rota and a pop-up will display the message sent by the employee, as well as a box to reply, and buttons to approve or deny the request.


If you have a pending request, the menu button in your RotaCloud app will show with a red marker. Tap this menu option, then tap ‘Pending requests’ to see all of your outstanding requests for swaps, shift drop and leave.

You can filter out particular types of requests by clicking the filters at the top of the page, or click on the request to view it. This will show you more details about the shift, including the message from the employee attached to their request.

You can approve or deny the request from here, or you can edit the shift itself directly from this page, if needed. You’ll be asked to add a comment, which is visible to the employee, before approving or denying.

A GIF of the Unavailability approval process on the RotaCloud mobile app; opening the menu, viewing pending requests and filtering Unavailability, then tapping on the request and approving it.

What happens when requests are approved?

On approval, the shift will automatically be moved to the open shift section of the relevant day, and become unpublished. The employee will be notified by email and a green unavailable icon will display on the shift as a reminder of the approved request.

A screenshot of the Rotas page on the Desktop version of RotaCloud. A shift with approved Unavailability has been made into an unpublished Open Shift, and is showing a green icon to denote approved Unavailability.

You can now reassign the shift to a specific employee if you wish, or leave it in the Open Shift section and publish it, allowing an employee to voluntarily assign it to themselves on a first-come, first-served basis.

What happens when requests are denied?

If the request is denied, the employee will be notified by email and a red unavailable icon will be attached to the shift.

A screenshot of the Rotas page on the Desktop version of RotaCloud. A shift with denied Unavailability now has an icon informing the reader of this.

Further Shift Drop requests made for a shift which has already had a request denied will not be allowed, as well as being met with a warning to remind the employee.

Did this answer your question?