“Workforce management is the most important HR and operations process there is for any large scale organization that relies on the deskless workforce. It’s at the core of the business - any changes you make are going to have a huge impact on your operations.”
These are the words of Quinyx co-founder and CEO, Erik Fjellborg, and when he talks about WFM, it pays to listen.
Since working a summer job at McDonald’s as a teenager and developing the very first version of Quinyx, Erik understands the whole WFM ecosystem better than most people. He’s experienced it all; from end-user through to top management.
It’s why we called him in to join Steve Levy (founder of three successful software companies and retail productivity expert), and Chris Kalgren (host of The WFM Show and WFM solution expert) to dive into the Gartner® 2021 Market Guide for Workforce Management Applications.
Here are five questions, based on their discussion, you need to answer before kicking off your WFM implementation.
1. Does it harness the power of automation and AI?
According to Gartner®'s 2021 Market Guide for Workforce Management Applications, by 2025 45% of large enterprises with hourly-paid workers and variable demand for labor will use automation to drive workforce scheduling decisions.
This doesn't mean that your HR or Operations team will be replaced by robots, but rather, that your new WFM solution will become your super clever assistant. This assistant will help you to save time, become more efficient, and guarantee compliance with complex labor laws.
What are your assistant's secret skills? Automation and AI.
By building the automation around smart AI, you'll be able to achieve more, and choose how to optimize your schedules. For example, do you want to reach your KPIs by creating schedules optimized to save costs or to improve employee happiness?
That's up to you.
2. Is it cloud-based?
One of the top recommendations from the report is to migrate any on-premise solutions to the cloud in order to maximize the potential of all the latest features and capabilities of WFM software.
And TIME is the word here. Because if your business is still on-premise in the next 1-2 years, your competition will soar past you.
If you work in the cloud you get full access to the latest upgrades and features straight away - without having to wait for them to be rolled out to an on-premise solution. This opens up to best practice workforce management processes.
And who wouldn't want to scale up faster, boost performance and enjoy water-tight security?
3. Does it integrate with payroll?
Your business probably has several tools already that you love, and it's therefore important that your WFM implementation is built as part of both your existing, and future application, landscape.
The must-have integration to have is with payroll providers. To assure that everything works seamlessly, WFM providers have whole teams dedicated to purely working with integrations.
Because one thing is sure - your employees want to get paid on time, for the hours they’ve worked.
4. Is there strong employee engagement features?
Employee engagement is and will be on the ropes. Our report The State of the Deskless Workforce 2021 found out that:
- Nearly 60% of shift workers say their personal care suffers due to inflexible schedules,
- 83% say staff shortages make work more stressful, and
- More than half go to work sick because they can’t afford to take time off.
It’s not the prettiest of pictures, so why not give more to your staff?
WFM solutions with simple, effective, built-in employee engagement features can help you reward and recognize your staff while boosting morale at the same time. Everybody wins.
5. Is it a global solution that can be deployed locally?
One of the recommendations in the report is to evaluate the pros and cons of global versus regional deployment strategies to ensure a ‘best fit’ approach for your organization.
Our advice here is to look for global WFM providers who can be compliant with all of the unique and complex local rules for the regions, states, or countries you operate in. We’ve recently written an article on how to solve your compliance issues, save millions and avoid hefty lawsuits? If you haven’t read it yet - go for it.
By working with one organization, you ease your WFM implementation and avoid having to deal with five different vendors in five different countries - all with their own implementation teams, support contracts, and integrations. You want to put yourself in a position where you can think globally and deploy locally.
On top of all of this, it goes without saying the platform you choose should be easy to use, intuitive, and have deep mobile functionality.
Watch the full episode of The WFM Show for more insight and analysis of the Gartner® 2021 Market Guide for Workforce Management Applications from our expert team.