The struggle as a manager
Managing a shift-based business is complicated, and creating work schedules that suit both you and your staff is no exception. You can spend hours creating the perfect weekly schedule, only to have a key employee request time off that week.
Developing a functional online work schedule means handling layers of logistics. The number of staff you need on the schedule has to correspond with how busy you expect to be. You also have to consider the qualifications and skill level of each employee, and determine which employees function best together as a group.
With so many logistics to handle, scheduling can take up a huge amount of your time. Fortunately, there are ways you can make the scheduling process more efficient.
Stay on top of employee availability
Making a work schedule that fits the needs of both your business and your staff can be challenging. That’s why it’s important to know when each of your workers is available.
With workforce scheduling software, you can easily track which of your employees is available to work. Simply have your staff make a note of which shifts they can take on a regular basis, then Planday will only let you schedule available employees.
Your staff can also request time off through our work scheduler, so you know who isn’t available well in advance. Once you approve vacation requests, the system won’t allow you to schedule employees who will be away.
Publish your online schedule well in advanceMany businesses that employ hourly workers often only post the schedule a few days in advance, and few post it online. This creates problems for both employees and managers, because employees have to request time off or swap shifts at the last minute, and managers have to coordinate that process.
A work schedule maker, however, makes it much easier to post your schedule well in advance. This allows both you and your employees to spot any conflicts well ahead of time, so no one is scrambling at the last minute.
If you have a weekly schedule that fits your business, you can save it as a template in our work scheduler. All you have to do to create a schedule for the coming weeks is apply your template and make any minor adjustments to suit that particular week.
Keep communication open
Communication is key to running a successful shift-based business. Both staff and managers need an overview of who is working and when, and if there are any changes or updates to be aware of.
Workforce scheduling software can ease the burden of communication for managers. With our platform, managers can quickly email or text all workers, individual employees, or a specific group of staff. Managers can also send a message to employees when they clock-in through our app, which ensures everyone is on the same page about any updates for that shift.
Staff can, of course, message a manager if they have scheduling issues that need sorting out. More importantly, employees can message each other to swap shifts or find a replacement. As a manager, you still have final approval over shift swaps, but you no longer have to micromanage the process.
Use consistent work scheduling practices
The needs of shift-based businesses constantly evolve, but try to use consistent shift patterns whenever possible. When you have a regular schedule, employees know what to expect, which increases engagement and decreases stress.
On top of that, consistent work scheduling practices reduce the rate of absenteeism, and allows staff to form better professional relationships with a consistent group of people. Simply put, scheduling employees for regular shifts makes them feel secure about their hours, wages, and professional relationships — all of which make them better employees.
Start developing more efficient scheduling practices with our work schedule maker today.