February 14, 2021

Here’s How Automated Substitute Teacher Scheduling Can Transform Your Schools in 2021


According to a 2020 report, every dollar invested into automation technologies produces a 78-cent increase in profits, a 37-cent improvement in sales, and a 5-cent reduction in costs. For schools, automation can be a game-changer.

Automation technologies have a cascading effect. They eliminate routine tasks, boost employee productivity, and improve employee satisfaction. Employees, who are not overworked, enjoy doing mentally stimulating tasks, and are doing the things they love, are bound to contribute more to the success of the school.

More importantly, automation reduces human errors and streamlines processes that have a certain degree of predictability. For instance, only 50% of the teacher absences are covered by substitutes in the U.S. schools. This is appalling!

Most of the teacher absences are preplanned and can be easily be filled with substitutes. Even when teachers are absent on short notice, schools can use automation technologies, such as InstaSub, to quickly find, engage, and schedule a suitable substitute. This can ensure continuity of learning for children, which is critical for their understanding of the subject.

Here are some of the other benefits offered by automated substitute teacher management systems:

1. 24/7 Accessibility
Automated substitute management systems provide users with online and mobile access, any time of the day or night. By supporting role-based user accounts, they make it possible for teachers to self-report their absences round the clock and kickstart the process of scheduling a substitute.

Whether it’s 2 in the morning or 30 minutes before the school starts – whenever the teachers realize that they would be unable to come to work, they can report it on the substitute management system. They don’t have to worry about calling the administrators at odd times.

2. Minimum Personnel Interactions
From self-reporting of absences to shortlisting of substitutes to scheduling them, everything can be automated with minimum interaction among school personnel.

Advanced automated substitute management solutions can be programmed to sift through substitute candidates, shortlist them, identify available substitutes, and notify them of the available substitute vacancy as soon as they receive an absence update. The entire process hardly takes a few seconds.

Compared to the manual process of calling and scheduling substitutes, which can often take hours due to unavailable substitutes, automated systems save countless hours of work for school administrators.

3. Simplify Communications
Once the teacher self-reports their absence, the substitute candidates are automatically sent the details of the job offer. When the job is accepted, a notification of confirmation is sent to the administrators, employee, and substitute who’ll be covering the class. At the same time, the absence details are updated in the absence and payroll reports.

Throughout the entire process, there’s not a single call placed. All alerts are sent via email, push notifications, or text messages.

4. Maximize Fill Rates
Traditionally, substitute teacher scheduling has been a manual process. Once a teacher absence is reported, be it over last-minute calls (emergency absences), or in advance (planned absences), the school administrators sift through their records of substitute candidates, match them for the class, and start calling them. However, substitutes are often unavailable or booked for another job. Therefore, the administrators end up calling one substitute after another until they find a candidate who is available and willing to cover the class.

Automated substitute management systems eliminate the hassle involved in substitute scheduling. They broadcast the job offer to a large pool of substitutes simultaneously using emails, text messages, and mobile alerts (push notifications). As soon as an available substitute teacher accepts the job, the administrators get a confirmation notification.

Thanks to the expanded reach accorded by automated systems, schools can easily find a substitute to fill-in for an absent teacher even on short notice.

5. Streamline Payroll Calculations
Modern substitute management software, such as InstaSub, are designed to seamlessly integrate into other school management systems such as HR management tools, payroll systems, and so on.

Once connected, the substitute management system can forward relevant work details of the substitutes, such as hours worked, and jobs accepted (even across multiple locations), to the payroll systems automatically. Such a seamless integration makes payroll calculations effortless for their HR teams while drastically reducing the paperwork involved.

6. Analytics
Online substitute management systems collect a wide variety of data on teachers and substitutes. Schools can analyze this data to get better insights and make smarter decisions.

Thankfully, many automated substitute management systems feature built-in analytics capabilities, and generate many useful reports that offer actionable insights to school administrators.

Insights that offer answers to pertinent questions like – How often teachers report absences? Which teacher reports the highest absences? When do most absences happen? Which substitutes are covering the most classes?
Automated substitute management systems assist in improving the system inside out, that too, at the click of a button.

Taking the Leap into 2021
Start the new year by making your school or district more efficient and effective in managing absences and scheduling substitutes with InstaSub’s automation capabilities.

To learn more about InstaSub, understand how it can catapult your school into the future, and to get a free demo, get in touch!