Top 3 Reasons to Enable Access Levels in BambooHR

February 25, 2021

As an HR pro, you may not feel like a superhero, but that’s kind of what it looks like to everyone else. Your spidey sense tells you how much paid time off people have, how much they’ll accrue over a certain time period, how to get that tax form, and so much more.

Unfortunately, you don’t have superspeed, so there’s only so much you can do in a day. But what if you had a super-speedy sidekick who could do all that legwork for you? Just imagine—you could be filling your days with strategic planning and developing initiatives to strengthen your culture and build a great workplace instead of answering a million questions.

News flash: You already have that super-speedy sidekick. It’s the Access Levels in your BambooHR® account. Set them up, turn them on, and—Bam! Zap! Pow! You’ll knock out a whole bunch of work by empowering your employees. And here’s why you should do it.

Reason #1: It’s Super Safe

Access Levels

Maybe you’re worried about handing over all that private, sensitive information to your employees. That’s a good instinct. The good news is there are different Access Levels to limit what people can see and change:

  • Full Admin Access Level: This level gives you access to view and edit all fields for all employees, as well as all settings. In other words, this is top level clearance, so you should limit this kind of access very strictly.
  • Manager Access Level: This level gives managers access to view information about their direct and indirect reports. You can still hide fields, meaning you can select which details managers can see about their employees, and the only editing ability this access level provides is to edit Notes.
  • Employee Access Level: This level gives individual employees access to their own information only—you have complete power over what they can see or edit. You have the option to give them:
    • No access
    • View-only access
    • Edit access
    • Edit access with approval (meaning you or the person you set as approver has to verify any changes an employee wants to make)

Custom Access Level (Professional and Advantage Packages): If none of these options have what you need, you can make your own. This level can come in handy if you need to grant access to certain administrative tools or want to give someone the ability to edit employee information without giving them full admin access to BambooHR.

See all the ways you can customize access in BambooHR.
Control what people see and edit with Access Levels.

Reason #2: It Makes You and Your Employees Super Speedy

Time Management

Think of all the time you spend entering, fixing, checking, calculating, totalling, and approving employee hours. What if BambooHR could help shift some of that responsibility to the employees themselves?

When you enable Employee Access Levels, employees can:

  • Clock in and out or enter their total hours right in BambooHR (with BambooHR® Time Tracking)
  • Double-check their timesheet and fix mistakes (with BambooHR® Time Tracking)
  • Check their current PTO balance
  • Calculate future PTO accrual
  • Request and get approval for time off
  • Update personal information (address, phone number, etc.)

Employees can do all of this from the web or mobile app, so they have access to all this functionality no matter where they are. And you have visibility into everything, so you don’t have to worry about anyone working the system in their favor.

Approvals and Workflows

Access Levels make it possible for you to set up workflows and approval processes. Rather than having to play email tag, you get to share the load more evenly while you ensure things get done, and you also help other decision makers have more direct involvement.

Here are a few examples of what managers can approve:

  • Timesheets
  • Time off requests
  • Information changes
  • Pay raises
  • Promotions
  • And more

Managers get more autonomy and you get peace of mind with automated reminders. You can also create checklists for those HR workflows that take a lot of coordination, like new-hire onboarding, offboarding, and training milestones.


E-signatures have the potential to save you time and trees. You get secure, digital storage for confidential paperwork, plus you can assign document signatures to employees and new hires—no more chasing people down or overstuffed file drawers.

This feature will also make you and your managers happier. By granting managers access, they can look at the signed documents for their employees themselves without having to ask you to do it for them.

Curious about what the Employee Access Level looks like from the employee side?

Reason #3: It Helps You Be Super Transparent


BambooHR can be a secure, central hub of information and communication when you enable employee access. In addition to all the features we’ve talked about already, here are a few more features that help make that happen:

  • Announcements: Send company-wide announcements through BambooHR to keep everyone up to date, even if they’re working remotely.
  • Mobile App: The BambooHR® Mobile app makes it easy for employees to access their information and manage their time, but they can also stay in touch with coworkers using the employee directory and get push notifications whenever there’s an announcement.

Employee Ownership

Overall, granting employees more access in BambooHR means they can take ownership of appropriate data. Employee self-service helps workers feel more in control as they view important documentation and submit requests, while the intuitive BambooHR experience gives them confidence that you have their back.

Set Yourself and Your Employees Free to Do Great Work

Granting other people access to BambooHR may sound scary, but it’s designed to be safe and easy—and it’s the best way to unlock many of the time-saving, paperwork-busting, happy-dance-inducing features in BambooHR. You and your organization have invested time and money setting up powerful HR software, so you deserve to get the full extent of the BambooHR promise: to be set free to do great work.

Unleash the full power of BambooHR
Turn on Employee Access Levels today!
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Marie-Reine Pugh

Marie-Reine Pugh is focused on making HR simpler for HR professionals and workplaces a better place for everyone. She pulls from her previous experiences as an educator and six years of writing and researching to explore how to create inclusive company cultures that help businesses succeed.