A crucial aspect of optimizing time and labor is the process of planning shifts. Are you looking to increase the efficiency of your shift planning tool for your small-scale firm? We’ve collected ten tips with practical tips to guide you.
In the beginning, let’s look at the purpose behind the shift schedule:
- Meet business demands
- Make sure that your employees can take good care of your customer’s patients or clients
- Maximize productivity
- Assist employees in ensuring their health and wellbeing
- Utilize the most effective use of resources
- Keep employees satisfied and loyal
- Be sure to comply with all labor laws
Shift planning tool is essential for efficient operations. When done correctly, it will become a tool to increase productivity, not a constant drain on time.
Shift Planning Tool Tips and Advice
1. Share Schedules Via the Web
In today’s digital world, it could be better than most small companies using a paper-based shift scheduling procedure. That is, employees are given their schedules printed on paper! With the free online calendars, every small business can offer any time, anywhere access to programs to employees who have a connected device.
2. Implement Formal Communication Protocol
Everyone must know how to share timetables. If workers use text messaging, some send emails, and a few leave notes on a Google Calendar that is shared, it creates chaos.
Set up how your team members will talk about timetables. If everyone has a cell phone, it is possible to use text messaging. If many people are working on a shift, The manager could use the group text to ensure that everybody is on the same team. Once you’ve decided on the method of communication, you can instruct employees to seek approval from the manager for any changes.
3. Generate Employee Profiles
To plan your shifts efficiently, you must have the correct information regarding each team member:
- Contact details
- Shift availability
- Desired shifts
- The maximum amount of hours that can be requested
- Willingness to cover non-shows and calls-outs
- Status of full-time or part-time
- The type of employee and the job description
- Skills and certifications
- Location, team, department or workgroup
4. Define Rules for Shift Planning
After you’ve compiled your employee profiles, you’re ready to develop guidelines for a shift planning tool. Naturally, the rules will vary based on your company’s industry, size, the structure of compensation, the budget for labor and business hours, the location, and the demographics of your employees.
FLSA, OSHA, predictive scheduling regulations, prevailing wages, Local/state/federal labour laws or union contracts also affect the scheduling of shifts. The PTO, overtime, or sick leave policies are all at the helm.
5. Arrange Shifts to Accommodate Your Best Employees
There should be at minimum one employee with experience working every shift. They can often take over the work of many newly hired or team members who need more experience. Furthermore, skilled veteran employees can coach less experienced employees and improve their skills.
6. Adopt Pre-Formatted Schedule Templates Available in the Shift Planning Tool
After establishing the schedule for the pay period or week, make the template. You can then copy it between weeks. There might be some tweaks, but you’ll have the foundation and never have to create a new one. It’s a good thing that you can make the templates you require. For instance, you could have one template for the busy season and another for the slower season. You could have an individual template for each site. Also, you could have templates based on groups or job roles.
7. Publish Schedules in Advance of the Planned Dates
Since scheduling is a real-life process involving individuals accountable for your business’s success, Efficiency shouldn’t be the sole goal of scheduling. Companies must be mindful of the significant impact scheduling can have on the lives of their employees.
However, with a little plan, you can balance productivity with the demands of your employees. The first step is to plan. Plan your shifts as far in advance as you can. Be sure your employees know that there could be some modifications. Most, however, will not be affected. Studies have revealed that shifts are typically less unpredictable than business owners can predict.
8. Engage employees in shift schedules
Ideally, the process should start by conducting the first interview. Find out when the person is available to work in the morning and how many hours they would like to work. Flexible availability and preferences for shifts are essential when hiring choices. Involve the team members in the process of planning shifts.
In today’s competitive labor market, a certain amount of schedule control could make a difference for the job seeker with equally appealing choices.
9. Facilitate Shift Swapping
With the help of a manager-controlled shift trading system, employees can post shifts in the event of unanticipated conflicts in the shift planning tool. Team members who want to work long hours can take up vacant shifts. Managers may approve or deny shift-change requests and set guidelines. For instance, employees who pick up a shift should have the appropriate abilities or qualifications. Specific teams might not require management approval to make changes so long as the employee can find an alternative.
10. Allow for Flexible Scheduling
Flexible working arrangements are well-liked and efficient with office workers and other positions. Let’s look at the most popular:
Flexible time may require minimum hours of operation and allow flexibility outside those hours.
Compressed Workweek: Fewer days but longer shifts. (Someone who is employed for ‘four tens, for instance, works four shifts of 10 hours.)
Remote Work – Once thought to be the only option, and Remote work has now become commonplace due to the epidemic. Remote work can need a core schedule and leave the rest of the time to be flexible. When employees are paid hourly, business owners must track time meticulously to ensure accurate payroll and conformity.
Self-Service – Allow employees to choose their schedules subject according to the policies. There could be times when they must work a minimum amount of hours.
Split Shift – The shift is divided into two segments of time. Workers who enjoy running errands or exercising during the day may prefer this shift.
Fixed Rotating Shifts – Most used in food manufacturing, beverage, and healthcare. Employees work a variety of shifts that change between weeks. This kind of schedule is a way of distributing less desirable shifts among the team members. Be aware, however, that the unpredictability of shifts can affect employees’ health.