Laptop top view
How to create a staff roster


5 min read

How to create a staff roster


    How to create a staff roster

    Creating shift rosters is a juggling act. You have to balance employee skills with different personalities, all while taking into account the needs of the business. With many factors to contend with, it’s easy to see how things can go wrong — leaving you up the creek without a paddle during a busy shift.

    Setting up a shift roster can seem like a tedious task. We’ll show you how to build a flexible and efficient roster for your team — one that streamlines operations while keeping your employees happy, engaged and motivated.

    Analyse your team's capabilities

    Knowing your team is important to understanding and fulfilling your business and shift requirements. Before you make any moves, be sure to analyse the strengths and weaknesses of each employee in your team. Some of the details you should know include:

    Know your team
    Personality type
    Work status (full-time, part-time or casual)
    Overtime restrictions
    Penalty rates
    Relevant skills
    Other traits (friendly, meticulous, efficient, works well under pressure, etc.)

    Guide to manage people

    It would be impossible to do this every time you create a new roster. Instead, use a solution such as Planday's roster, which filters employees by their skills or departments. Additionally, it enables you to analyse your workforce to determine where you’re short of skilled workers. 

    This can boost employee engagement by up to six times — improving their performance and growing your bottom line.

    Schedule your employees for success

    The information you gathered during your analysis gives you the knowledge and flexibility to build rosters where employees are set up to succeed in areas where they excel.

    First, create a customisable shift template. At minimum, a basic template should define each role you need to fill along with the number of hours required per role. It should also state how many staff members you need per shift — depending on the demand that day.

    Build an effective team for every shift

    Build shift plans and rosters around the best employees

    Fill in the most critical roles with your best employees, based on skills and personalities. For example, in a restaurant your most efficient employee should take the lead role during the midday or evening rush.

    During this time of the shift, speed and efficiency matter because customers want to either grab something quickly or get outstanding service that beats dinner at home.

    But keep in mind, more personable employees are better suited for quiet periods or one of the dinner shifts — when customers have more time and are more likely to linger.

    Use experienced employees at peak times

    Experienced employees are valuable assets because their skill-set fits across different shift situations. The most optimal time to utilise them is during peak times where pressure can build because demand is high.

    Your busiest time of day is the most crucial success — since this is where you stand to make the most financial gain and when the reputation of your business is established.

    A restaurant

    Pair up those who work best together

    Most shift-based workforces have a blend of employees - ranging from workers with decades of industry experience under their belt to new hires or casuals starting their first job. 

    Expecting the junior or newer casual staff to run a shift on their own would be a detriment to your business outcomes and reputation, since they simply lack the experience to react to high-pressure situations. But these employees are the future of your business, and you want them to gain experience. 

    Your best course of action is to pair them with experienced employees, ideally during low traffic times. Doing this creates stability in the shift while helping junior employees learn the ropes from the veterans.

    Make the schedules available as early as possible

    Providing the finished roster to your employees as soon as possible is important — since advance notice reduces scheduling conflicts from occurring. A cloud-based solution, like Planday scheduling software, will help you publish the rosters via email at the click of a button. 

    As a rule of thumb, give employees at least two weeks of notice before the end of their current shift. This gives employees ample time to balance their work schedules with their personal life. 

    Even so, there still may be some conflicts, and you’ll have to make changes to the schedule where possible. A cloud-based communication app like Planday Shiftworker app streamlines the resolution process by ensuring every change is instantaneously visible to relevant employees. It’s also best practice to use a staff management app to track all changes. 

    To further speed up the process, allow employees to trade shifts, with your approval. Doing so gives them the flexibility they need for a better work-life balance and makes them feel valued. 

    Allowing employees to take part in the scheduling helps them understand what’s expected from them. Better yet, it eliminates last-minute no-shows which can leave you scrambling to find substitutes at the last minute.  

    Create efficient and intelligent rosters with Planday

    Your employees are critical to the success of your business, since they are the ones that keep operations running smoothly. You should strive to keep them motivated and happy.

    Invest in reliable online scheduling software and learn how to schedule staff effectively. Signup for Planday’s 30-day free trial and learn how our solution can streamline scheduling.

    © 2004 - 2024 Planday