September 13, 2021

How Smarter Employee Scheduling Can Empower Your Workforce

It’s common for a software system to be called a “solution.” But an employee scheduling solution isn’t really a solution unless it solves your problems.

To earn the right to be called a true solution in today’s complex employment environment, workforce management tools have two primary tasks. They must empower managers to run day-to-day operations as efficiently as possible. And to do that well, they must empower employees to manage their schedules and PTO largely without manager involvement.

These two tasks operate together. Comprehensive workforce management solutions give your increasingly mobile workforce visibility and control into managing their schedules and personal information. This, in turn, streamlines employee management activities, promoting efficiency and productivity for managers.

Employee Scheduling Solutions Give Employees More Visibility and Control

It isn’t easy for employees to constantly integrate changing work schedules with their shifting personal schedules and preferences. Sometimes they need to swap a shift or find a sub to fill theirs; other times, they’d like to pick up extra shifts.

Poor scheduling costs companies millions and takes its toll on employees. It forces them to accept last-minute overtime shifts. Strained work/life balance leads to resentment, burn-out, reduced productivity … and can even lead to injury in some environments. Without a measure of influence over some aspects of their schedule, even dedicated workers will eventually experience some level of absenteeism.

For all these reasons and more, employees value centralized online access to view and manage their work schedules, leave accruals and personal information. But they don’t just want it. They EXPECT top employers to enable autonomy in managing their personal administrative work details through mobile or online channels.

They like having 24/7 access to their information and receiving automated real-time reminders and notifications. For many, missing important updates that could impact their paycheck or schedule is unacceptable.

Empowered Employees Empower Managers

Managers often spend many hours each week creating and communicating employee schedules for their teams. Then they add untold more hours updating the schedule as employee or shift needs change. Then they spend even more time communicating those changes as often as necessary.

Whether they’re making calls or sending emails, critical information may not reach employees in a timely manner. So, after all of that, they can still end up with understaffed shifts, which makes them look and feel ineffective. (And that doesn’t even count the challenges of managing PTO.)

But there’s hope! Workforce management solutions for scheduling and leave management can do the heavy lifting. Employees can view or update their information, pick up extra shifts, and request time off without having to involve the manager. The result? HR productivity and efficiency and morale soar.

A Scheduling System Impacts Every Employee’s Time and Efficiency

When employees and managers must rely on manual scheduling processes, more than just their time suffers. It’s easy for them to create or overlook errors. This adds even more hassle and time to what could have been an accurate, automated process. Multiply this effect across your entire workforce day-in and day-out. You’ll see the enormous potential for frustration and wasted resources.

But when employees can enter their availability into the employee scheduling system prior to schedules being created, scheduling is easier and requires fewer changes. When simple processes like clocking in and out can integrate—error-free—with workforce management tools and payroll providers, everybody gets some of their time back and paychecks are accurate. Workflows can move like a well-oiled machine.

Efficiencies like this have a significant impact on employee satisfaction, work output and labor costs. So, it’s worth exploring where the hurdles and hassles your teams constantly navigate and considering the high cost of continued inefficiency.

Employee Engagement is an Investment in Your Organization’s Bottomline

Partnering with employees in managing their schedules and time off sends a message of support that impacts your organization in waves.

Engaged and empowered employees make life easier for your managers. They eliminate administrative hassles and get time back. And that efficiency results in improved morale and labor cost savings across the organization.

Smart leaders know that they can boost their customer experience by improving employee engagement. And a strategic workforce management solution is a great place to start.

If you’re looking to elevate your time-tracking and employee scheduling approach, download our Workforce Management Buyer’s Guide to learn what you need to know when choosing a workforce management solution.