The primary goal of any business using hourly labour or casual staff is having the right people in the right place at the right price and at the right time to service customer demand. Staff rosters or schedules must be optimised to meet this key performance indicator.
Managers know the effect of not getting this right. Labour budgets can blow out, and if you are using manual or outdated systems you don’t know about problems until a payroll cycle is complete. Best-in-class organisations know that they need to automate the scheduling process with an online tool to get the most out of their labour budgets.
Many organisations are still using spreadsheets to manage rosters and schedules. We have seen these used by organisations employing hundreds of people and can be quite sophisticated. They are, however, time-consuming to manage and prone to error. The benefits of using an automated solution for scheduling are numerous and can include:
- Improved efficiency of managers
- Reduction in labour costs
- Increased workforce utilisation
- Adherence to labour budgets
- Elimination of perceived favouritism for prime shifts or overtime
- Increased employee engagement
- Improved customer satisfaction
Key to efficiency
Integration of automated scheduling with Time and Attendance systems will further enhance productivity and elimination of manual processes. When rosters are linked to a Time and Attendance solution, the organisation can track scheduled versus actual hours worked, ensuring staff are only paid for the hours worked. The next step in automating the process is integration with payroll systems, which will streamline the entire payroll process and help to eliminate overpayments.
The workforce management domain continues to evolve and there are exciting developments on the horizon. Shift bidding is growing in popularity because it enables employees to select the dates and times they want to work. Linking schedules to projected and historical sales data, and even weather reports, is becoming a reality and will further enhance client services levels and help reduce labour costs.
Efficient scheduling and rostering is vital for organisations that are looking to align corporate goals with workforce deployment. By automating this vital function, organisations will ensure that they have the people available to accurately meet client demand.