As businesses are embracing digital transformation, they are expanding beyond geographical boundaries. The traditional 9 to 5 hours for companies with global customers are not sustainable anymore. To offer round-the-clock service, companies need to employ shift management.
Shift rostering is becoming popular among employees as it allows them to work outside the conventional 9-5 schedule. Shifts are crucial for prompt customer care, continuous business operations, and avoiding any service gaps.
In this article, we will explore shift management and its benefits.
What is shift rostering?
A shift roster also known as shift management is a schedule that determines the hours of work or ‘shift’ that employees should work for in a company. It typically includes a list of employees and information regarding their schedules, such as the timing, location, and responsibilities. Most companies use shift management to ensure that each shift has an adequate number of employees. It is necessary to ensure that the productivity remains the same and the work distribution is even.
When there is a larger workforce or multiple shifts, problems can often occur, and shift management helps spot the issues.
Importance of shift rostering for a company
Employers can use shift management to get high productivity from employees in each shift. If you are not already using shift rostering to manage workers’ schedules, you miss several benefits of shift management.
1. Well-managed shifts allow employee flexibility
Employees value flexibility, and ever since the pandemic struck, employees have wanted flexibility more than any other thing in a job. According to a survey, 63% of employees want more flexibility in their careers. Work shifts allow employees to manage their time better. Employees with childcare responsibilities want early shifts, while university students might wish to go for evening shifts. Well-managed shifts let employees manage their time well, reducing the attrition rate.
2. Increase productivity and company growth
When employees work in shifts, they are not over-worked or burdened with tasks due to uneven work distribution. It makes them more productive and prevents employee burnout. Also, companies can use shifts to stay open for longer and be well-staffed to increase output and revenues. It leads to company growth.
3. Help reduce labor costs by saving overtime
Overtime is a significant cost for businesses. Most companies report that the overtime budget comprises 10% to 15% of their annual budget. With effective shift planning, companies can tailor the staff number as per their need in shifts. For example, a company can divide a workforce of 60 into three shift rosters of 20 employees. Then the shift hours can accommodate peak hours and ensure that the maximum number of employees are available at these hours. Such a shift management system will help reduce labor costs without compromising efficiency and productivity.
Shift management is essential, but most managers think shift rostering is about letting staff know the number of hours they need to work. It is this thought process that prompts them to do shift rostering manually. Unfortunately, manual shift rostering can be highly challenging.
Why manual shift rostering is a problem?
According to a study, most companies with manual shift management spend 19,741 person-hours every year on it. Manual shift management relies on human intervention. Every change and following updates in the roster are done manually. It is challenging to plan the roster every time there is a change as it is highly time-consuming.
Furthermore, when no automated system exists, HR managers cannot keep track of who is working and who’s not in real-time. It also makes it challenging to manage shifts, and check the absentees manually.
Manual shift management is rigid; any shift change will require hours to rearrange the entire roster. It also makes frequent shift swapping tedious. Also, with no central data storage or tools to extract the data, HR will depend on worksheets to make resource management decisions. It is time-consuming and leads to frequent errors in shift management.
How to optimize shift management effectively
As manual shift management is not sustainable, companies need automated solutions to optimize and improve shift rostering. Here are some benefits of such optimization:
1. Plan shift requirements in advance
Effective shift management is about timing. To reduce the number of absentees and absence requests, you must provide them with the work schedule ahead of time. When you plan things like the number of shifts, no. of employees in each shift, and the work, you allow enough time for employees to prepare for their shift.
This flexibility is essential to give plenty of room and avoid last-minute scrambling. Managers must focus on shift planning to reduce the overall stress and tension associated with last-minute schedules. It does not have a positive impact on employees.
2. Use automated tools to manage shifts
Digital transformation of businesses is essential, and so, when companies embrace technology, they become adaptable and future-proof. For schedule management optimization, companies can use scheduling software solutions like Truein.
Today, flexible and user-friendly automated tools are available that HR managers can use to manage shifts. Paper tables and spreadsheets are outdated; automated tools help companies optimize their shift planning and reduce costs and workforce overheads.
3. Plan the schedule in the software or tool
Manual shift planning adds much overhead for both employees and managers. For instance, if an employee requests a shift change, he will put a request manually in the absence of software or tool. Then the manager has to review and approve the request manually. But somewhere along the way, the request can be forgotten or miscommunicated. A tool or software can make the entire scheduling process quick and effective.
4. Track employees
Managers can quickly identify absentee replacements, track employees in real-time, and handle shift swaps and approvals when the company has software for shift management. For instance, Truein has options to optimize resource allocation by tracking employees. It allows planned work distribution among available employees in a shift.
5. Detailed report of the roster
Most shift rostering software provides reporting features. From a central dashboard, managers can view and generate reports like the number of shifts, employees, detail of employees, etc. These detailed reports help optimize company resources and boost productivity.
Truein for ultimate shift management
Truein is an AI-based touchless face recognition attendance system that offers shift rostering capabilities. It is designed for businesses of all sizes and has brands like Tata 1mg and Godrej as clients.
Whether a company wants a shift management solution for employees, contractual workers, or distributed workforce, Truein can accommodate all requirements.
It requires no additional hardware as employees can download the app on their smartphones while managers can track and manage employees and shifts from a central dashboard from their mobile or laptop screens.
Some features that make Truein stand out:
- It auto-assigns shifts by detecting the arrival time of an employee. There is no need to prefix the roster.
- It allows multiple shift tracking, i.e., employees can break the total duration of their shift into various shifts.
- Managers can manually change shifts anytime.
- Shift rostering analytics and summary are available in the central dashboard.
- Entirely customizable-employers can configure the shift timing, weekly rotational off, leaves, etc., as per their company policies.
If you don’t want managers to waste a lot of their working hours on shift planning, you need to deploy an automated shift rostering software solution. Truein is an all-in-one shift scheduling & employee management app that businesses of all sizes can use to manage their employees from one place.