Employee Scheduling and Planning – A definition
Employee scheduling and planning are two of the most challenging aspects of a manager’s job. They also just so happen to be two of the most important, because scheduling staff creates order and flow for your business. Proper employee scheduling and planning ensure that your staff knows when they are working, so they can focus on their jobs instead of waiting for or having problems with their schedule. Successful scheduling and planning also ensure that essential tasks are covered at the right times.
Challenges of Employee Scheduling and Planning
Employee scheduling requires determining when staff members will work and when you need part-time, full-time, and freelance workers to work. This may sound simple, but you may have staff who cannot work certain days, who need time off for health or family reasons, or who request to work certain times. Couple that with unexpected time off such as sick time, and employee scheduling quickly can become a nightmare. It is best for you to have a policy in place so that employees are required to give a certain amount of advance notice for time off, especially for vacations and surgery.
Employee planning involves a strategic process for systematically identifying and analyzing your organization’s needs in order to determine what you require as far as size, type, and quality of employee personnel for achieving business goals. The goal of employee planning is to identify the optimal combination of experience, knowledge, and skills that employees must possess in order to perform their work and contribute to achieving the business goals. Typically, the employee planning process involves setting a strategic direction, analyzing the workforce, implementing the workforce plan, and evaluating the results.
Employee Scheduling and Planning for the Mobile Workforce
Employee scheduling and planning become even more difficult when managing mobile workers or those in field services. These industries require planning in order to intelligently build credible forecasts and to plan the capacity of your resources for weeks, months, and even years in advance. Once you have your employee planning completed, you must create daily schedules for mobile workers and field techs that include the best possible scenarios and optimize throughout the workday. Workforce management supervisors and managers utilize enterprise mobile workforce management software solutions to automate the process of employee scheduling and planning and to optimize resources.
Benefits of Employee Scheduling and Planning Software
Clearly, attempting to complete the processes of employee scheduling and planning manually is a nearly impossible task, especially if you have a business any larger than a very small one. Employee scheduling and planning software solutions are available for businesses of any size, including the enterprise. There are several benefits of using employee scheduling and planning software, which we highlight below:
Kronos reports that labor is the largest controllable expense in healthcare organizations, as labor accounts for more than 50% of all expenses; the healthcare industry is not unique in its labor expenses, which is why ensuring optimal employee scheduling with employee scheduling and planning software solutions is critical to any business’ bottom line
- Increasing operational efficiency, as the scheduling and planning software solution saves time and improves work methods by automating the process
Increasing management control, as supervisors and managers have the ability to monitor resources in real time with complete visibility into the employees’ arrival times, departure times, tasks completed, and more
Increasing satisfaction, as workers provide a quick response to customer calls, and staff enjoys the benefits of a schedule the accommodates the work load and fairly divides holidays, weekends, and other less desirable shifts
Employee scheduling and planning may seem like a daunting task, especially for enterprises and those within the mobile workforce industry, but with the right employee scheduling and planning software, you will increase efficiency, productivity, and satisfaction across the board.