Schedules are now much more than just being a rota. They are key to keeping employees happy and a business lean and successful.
By automating the process involved in creating and managing a schedule our customers consistently tell us they are able to see a telling difference in the way they operate. Not only are they able to more effectively control costs, keep their employees happy and provide a better service to their customers, they are able to get their managers back to doing what they do best.
There’s so many different elements to consider when it comes to creating great schedules. Employee requests and availability, budgeted hours, times of peak business, shift patterns and employment law all combine to form layers of complexities which need to be addressed. It’s no surprise in larger organisations creating a schedule can take days if not weeks to get right.
Whether it’s a schedule for 6 or 60 people, there will be requests to change shifts, absences and changing hours to deal with. This can become incredibly frustrating and a massive drain on energy. When we first meet new clients we see it in their faces and hear it in their voices. The frustration comes from the fact that they are losing valuable time on a regular basis managing a schedule rather than managing their people and their business.
This pain can be taken away by better, smarter, scheduling. A good schedule is about getting people in the right place at the right time and, importantly, doing the right task. At the same time effective scheduling allows businesses to empower their employees, become more productive and ultimately deliver a better service to their customers.
So what is it that makes a good schedule? Here are four top tips to make better staff schedules…
1. Put the right people in the right place
The most important element of any schedule is getting the right people, in the right place at the right time. It also needs to ensure they’re doing the right thing. When it comes to being more efficient and productive this is the single biggest factor to get right. It will help your business optimise its performance, boost staff morale and provide a better experience for your customers
2. Know your assets
Knowing your team means you’re able to understand them as individuals, so cater to their needs, while at the same time knowing where their skills are best deployed. Knowing your assets also means knowing who is available, when they’re available and how much they want to work. Armed with this knowledge, you’ll be able to create much stronger schedules.
3. Make sure it’s flexible and accessible
A good schedule should be flexible and accommodating, easy to understand and easy to manage. You and your staff should be able to access it from anywhere at anytime. You should use software that has this functionality as standard and has been built around making the process as easy, stress-free and effective as possible.
4. Give control to your employees
Give your employees the opportunity, when possible, to choose when they work. You might not be able to do this all the time but employees who have control over their schedules perform better and are more engaged.
Are you interested to find out how you can optimise your scheduling process, and at the same time free up time and decrease labour costs? Download our guide "Strategic Workforce Management" below.