Key points about the benefits of employee scheduling software:
- If creating employee schedules is a manual process for you, scheduling software can automate the process and save you hours of time each week.
- An employee scheduling solution is one of the essential management tools.
- Scheduling software can also help you reduce labor costs, simplify compliance, improve your employee experience, and more.
No matter how many employees you have, creating schedules can be a time-consuming task. You need to find the right coverage, meet shift requirements, resolve schedule conflicts, and deal with last minute changes.
On average, managers spend 20% of their time creating employee schedules manually. In a 40 hour work week, that’s about a full day consumed by schedule management per week! If you or your Human Resources department is spending too much time on employee schedules, software can be a time and cost-effective solution.
What is employee scheduling software?
Employee scheduling software automates the process of creating and managing employee schedules. It automates staffing adjustments, optimizes schedules, assigns shifts, and tracks coverage. Software can also help you stay compliant and manage employee leave and time off requests.
What are the benefits of using employee scheduling software?
Managing schedules can be deceptively complex. You have to keep track of:
- Company holidays
- Employee vacations
- Shift coverage
- Compliance requirements
- Meeting room availability
- And more
If you have different companies and multiple schedules, your job is even harder. When you manage employee schedules manually for your entire workforce, it can be difficult to keep them accurate and up-to-date. Sharing each update throughout your company can be a challenge as well.
Scheduling software simplifies these processes and makes life easier for your HR department, managers, and team members. Compared to manual scheduling, scheduling software offers these key benefits:
1. Valuable time saved
With scheduling software, you don’t have to create a new schedule from scratch every time you need one. Most software programs give you the ability to copy schedules over from one week to another. If you have recurring schedules, this can be especially helpful.
If you need to create new schedules each week, software can still streamline your experience. Scheduling software often lets you drag and drop shifts, so it’s easier to build and adjust schedules as you go. You don’t have to fumble with multiple spreadsheets.
2. Automated time off and leave requests
Whether an employee requests a few hours of sick time or a week of vacation, you can automate the approval process with scheduling software. This saves you time and provides you with a digital record of employee requests.
For lengthy leave requests or anything that requires additional review, you or a designated manager can still have the final say before the request is approved.
3. Fewer scheduling conflicts
Employee scheduling software helps you be proactive and prevent scheduling conflicts before they occur. Top employee scheduling software can automatically send you alerts when there are:
- Scheduling conflicts
- Uncovered or understaffed shifts
- Overstaffed shifts
4. Strategic staffing
Employee scheduling software can help you optimize coverage in other ways, too. Software can help you identify off hours or frequent periods of downtime where employees will have the opportunity to cross-train or learn and develop new skills. With the chance to grow, your employees are more likely to have a positive work experience. When done strategically, your customer service or overall business operations won’t suffer in the process, either.
With some solutions, you may be able to schedule employees based on their skill level or certifications, too. This can help you plan for special events or peak hours and ensure your business runs smoothly during those times.
5. Reduced labor costs
Labor costs are probably one of your biggest expenses. Software can help you become more cost-efficient by tracking:
- Scheduled versus actual hours worked
This can help you calculate the correct pay each pay period, plus plan future schedules more strategically.
6. Better communication
If you rely on paper printouts or email attachments, it can be difficult to share schedule updates with your employees and ensure everyone is on the same page. Employee scheduling software makes it easier to communicate effectively with your employees and reduce scheduling conflicts.
When you publish a new schedule or update an existing one, you can send a notification alerting your employees to the change. Because software lets you share schedules and shift changes in real time, your employees won’t be surprised or caught unawares. You won’t have to deal with as many last-minute time off requests, either.
7. Improved employee experience
Without employee scheduling software, employees usually need to notify their managers of shift changes, time off requests, and any other scheduling concerns. This process can be time-consuming and create more opportunities for error. For instance, a manager may misunderstand a request and accidentally schedule the wrong day off.
With software, employees can manage their own schedule changes. With most collaborative scheduling tools, employees can set their own availability, trade shifts with each other, submit leave and time off requests, and otherwise play a more active role in their work experience.
Because employees can see schedule changes in real time, there’s also less risk of them accidentally arriving late or showing up for a cancelled shift. This gives them an improved experience, greater employee satisfaction, and better work-life balance.
Most scheduling software providers offer a mobile app for added convenience. With a mobile app, you and your employees can manage schedules from any location. Regardless of where they are, employees can check their schedules, make changes, and submit time off requests. This can be especially helpful for employees who travel frequently or don’t work in a traditional office setting.
9. Performance management
You can also use employee scheduling software as a performance management tool. With it, you’ll be able to track absences and tardies easily. If there’s a recurring problem, you’ll have a track record you can reference to discuss with your employee.
10. Compliance with scheduling laws
A variety of complex, ever-changing laws regulate workforce scheduling. With Federal, state, and local requirements, it can be difficult to stay compliant. Scheduling software provides built-in tools and checks to help you reduce penalty payments and stay compliant with:
- The Fair Labor Standards Act
- Predictive scheduling
- Meal and break regulations
- Overtime rules
- Union agreements
- Other state and local requirements
Employee Scheduling with an HRIS
Employee scheduling software streamlines and simplifies your manual scheduling processes. If you want to make your life even easier, consider scheduling software with an HRIS. Employee hours worked and time off will be automatically captured in payroll and updated anytime there’s a change. The reduced data entry can save you time and help ensure accuracy. SentricHR provides one complete solution for employee scheduling, payroll, time tracking, and more. To learn more about our scheduling software, schedule a demo today!