Just in case you’ve been hiding under a rock and might have missed it, we want you to know that the workforce management industry has changed.
In fact, in less than a decade, the industry has gone from being on the periphery of business solutions to being one of the most important aspects for businesses with large, deskless workforce.
Gartner says that we’ve entered into the world of WFM 2.0. A world that cloud-based, mobile-first workforce management tools have taken over. Accessible, powerful, intelligent, affordable and scalable are described to be the key characteristics. Thanks to these new tools, forward-thinking businesses are now able to redefine their employee experience, become more profitable and, ultimately, provide a better service to their customers.
Here’s three focus areas that has been impacted by the latest development within the workforce management industry:
1. Automating elements of the manager experience
Managers can now use WFM tools for a whole host of different tasks which, crucially, save time and allow them to do more of what they are best at.
A WFM solution is becoming the manager’s best friend, especially when it comes with an intuitive, intelligent app. An app that instantly responds to the real-time needs of the business and their employees - whether that’s finding the best person to cover a shift, opening up over time hours or opening extra shifts to cope with times of peak demand.
The key is, with the right rules created within the system, all of these elements can be completely automated meaning managers don’t even have to think about them.
Increasingly, the best solutions will utilize AI and machine learning - alongside a range of different metrics - to help managers optimize their workforce and improve productivity across the board by putting the right people, in the right place, at the right time.
2. Making the employee experience a priority
Creating a world-class employee experience is no longer a ‘nice to have.’ It’s a necessity to survive. In the world of workforce management, you can see that businesses are more often turning to their WFM solution to help improve their employee engagement and happiness.
And why not? If you in an instant can see how your workforce are feeling, what their opinions are, what they want, and what they need - then your employee engagement doesn’t just have lift off, it’s soaring into the stratosphere. The best WFM apps allow you to do this with employee engagement features - such as pulse surveys, recognition and rewards - built into them.
The benefits having engagement as a core part of your WFM software are:
- Minimal fuss and hassle. Having engagement built into a WFM app makes life super simple for your employees. They don’t need to download yet another business app as everything is managed through the WFM app they’re already using
- Improved loyalty. By making engagement a priority you’ll have more loyal staff and reduced employee turnover, this is particularly important in service industries where the trend is for a high turnover of staff.
- Happy customers. Guess what? Happy staff means happy customers. Looking after your employees is a sure-fire way to improve customer satisfaction.
- Better business. Your staff are happy and your customers are happy. Congratulations - you have a happy business! And this is a huge step to creating a profitable business.
3. Creating a flexible workforce
Flexible working isn’t new. It’s existed in some shape or form for years. But traditionally, it’s only been enjoyed by office workers who can easily choose when, where and how they work.
But what about the deskless workforce? What about the hotel receptionist, the bartender, the barista, the store clerk, the nurse, the carer, the warehouse worker? What about flexible working for them?
It’s a pipedream that’s now become a reality.
Thanks to mobile-first workforce management, the rise of the gig economy, and changing relationships to how we view work, flexible working can now be enjoyed by everyone.
With 85% of workers believing flexibility makes them more productive, with the right tools and technology in place, flexible working can allow your organization to not just improve productivity, but save time, reduce costs, improve employee retention and boost employee happiness.
Download our free trend guide for more insight into the future of workforce management and to see how we think the industry will evolve further over the coming years.