Workforce Management Software

Optimizing Your Employee Scheduling Process

In our previous post, we took a look at the concept of scheduling abuse. Scheduling abuse can take several forms, but usually revolves around the theme of – get this – abusing the schedule of employees. We figured you probably could have inferred that definition from the term itself, but it’s never a bad idea to have your bases covered.

In that post, we took a look at some popular forms of schedule abuse, among which are having employees quasi-scheduled for on-call shifts, frequently cutting employees who are counting on the hours for their next paycheck, and even adjusting the schedule days or hours before the effective change takes place.

For our readers who are interested, feel free to go back and read up on that topic on your own. You could maybe even do it right now. Go ahead, we won’t stop you. Alright, done? Perfect.

Now that we are all on the same page, let’s move along to discuss some pragmatic tips to help scheduling managers improve their process, keep employee morale high, and generally manage in a better way. Keep reading if you are a fan of any of those things!

Being Aware Of Scheduling Abuse

We know, we know: we promised we wouldn’t spend the entirety of today’s post discussing scheduling abuse, but there is one more aspect to this malpractice we’d like to highlight. Employers need to be aware of what it can look like in all its forms so they can identify it for what it is. Oftentimes, business owners aren’t aware of bad habits that have crept into the scheduling manager’s day-to-day, so being equipped with this toolkit can help you look out for tell-tale signs that something less-than-savory is occurring.

Long-Term Cost

That being said, did you know how costly scheduling abuse can be? If we play out the worst-case scenario, an employee might end up quitting if they get their schedule jockeyed around too much. From a purely monetary perspective, this is bad news for the employer. The retail industry boasts a not-so-hot 70 percent turnover rate, in large part due to scheduling abuse. Losing a ten-dollar-per-hour employee can cost you upwards of $3,000 when you factor in hiring searches, training, and the like.

Employee Scheduling Abuse

Scheduling abuse costs you in the long run. But, as is the case with any relationship, it’s a two-way street. Employees are not immune from abusing employers. If a certain kind of employee thinks they can get away with something, they’ll often test their boundaries until they get serious pushback. Let’s look at employee scheduling abuse in greater detail.

Employee scheduling abuse can take any of the following forms:

  • Consistently having the same kind of emergencies which prohibit them from being able to make it into work
  • Thinking they will get special treatment because of history with the company or another reason, leading to trying to make last-second changes to their schedule without a viable reason
  • Needing to leave early for different reasons numerous times every week
  • Thinking they can get away with not doing tasks they don’t like (but are expected to perform) based on seniority or another reason
  • Looking to swap shifts with coworkers so they can get more shifts where they are likely to get better tips
  • Constantly calling in sick, especially on a Friday or Monday
  • Simply becoming a no-show, all too frequently

It’s not fun to snoop on your employees if you suspect these kinds of behaviors are becoming all-too-common. It’s something you are forced to nip in the bud, though, because when one staff member starts taking advantage of you, many others will follow suit.

Luckily, you can automatically identify, and in many cases, solve the situation, with our workforce management software here at Scheduling+. We help scheduling managers streamline their processes with our easy-to-use employee scheduling software. Beyond that, our TimeClock App allows you to set up a tablet in your breakroom where employees can only clock in and out at that station. This gives you better control and helps solve a few of the issues we mentioned above.

Specifically, employees will have no excuse when it comes to schedule changes, as they will have access to any changes as soon as you make them. Additionally, you can save money by having more control over when employees punch in and out. There’s no more buddy punching — long gone are those days with our online employee scheduling platform here at Scheduling+.

Tips, Continued

  • In a Snagajob study, close to 80 percent of employers told surveyors that they publish their shift schedules on paper. While most employees have wised up enough to take a picture of the schedule on their phone, problems can still arise if schedules need to be adjusted. You can solve this problem one of two ways, as we see it. You can create busy-work for yourself in texting and emailing everyone about changes, or you can pay an affordable monthly fee and let our employee scheduling software take care of the details for you. You can adjust your schedule on the fly if need be, and even set up notifications for your employees. All important scheduling information is housed in a central location, which gives employees and employers instant access to any kind of info they need.
  • Get your schedule to your employees a minimum of two weeks in advance – Our employee scheduling software will work wonders in saving you time and money, but, tragically, someone still needs to make the schedule. If you want to boost employee morale and raise the bar around your company, getting the schedule out a minimum of two weeks in advance is a great way to start. They’ll be able to view their schedule on Scheduling+’s Employee App, which is available as a web-based app, or in Android and iOS format.
  • Set an example – This point piggy-backs nicely from the last one. Average managers manage, exceptional managers lead by example. If you want to cut down on your employees being flaky, take self-inventory in the mirror. It isn’t always fun, but you don’t want to give employees any excuses when it comes to being consistent and proactive about their work. All boats rise when you, the manager, can raise the water level.
  • Consider hiring a dedicated on-call employee – We get it — sometimes you need to have someone on standby just in case things get crazy during a particular period. Maybe there’s a rush due to a sporting or musical event, maybe your store gets crazy around the holidays, or maybe it’s something else. Whatever the case may be, managers who get tempted to use their employees for on-call shifts too often would be wise to consider having a dedicated on-call worker. This isn’t a bad practice at all, if you come to the understanding that such expectations are part of this employee’s particular role.
  • Be as flexible as you can – You define the culture of your business. If you want a group of dedicated, empathetic employees, you’ll need to set the example for others to follow suit. If you end up being too strict when it comes to your day-to-day policies and expectations, your employees might start to operate in bad faith. That is, they just might start acting differently when the manager isn’t looking, because they don’t respect you. On the other hand, if you treat your employees with respect, they’ll probably treat you the same way. One of the most practical ways you can behave like this is in being flexible with time-off requests. Unless an employee has given you reason to doubt them, do your best to accommodate their vacation requests. Knowing they can count on you to let them feel free to take a few days off now and then (within reason) can go a long way in reference to employee satisfaction.
  • Use workforce management scheduling software – using workforce scheduling software can save you a considerable amount of time and money when it comes to payroll software, task management, time clock management, and consolidating scheduling. We’ve made an intuitive platform, able to be used on phones, tablets, or in a web-based format. Using employee scheduling software also affords employers with the added benefit of restricting pay to actual time worked. With our clock-in, clock-out feature in our TimeClock App, managers have more control than ever before with regards to employees being attempted to tack on a few minutes worked here and there. If you are in charge of payroll, it’s no secret to you that those little chunks of times can add up to make a significant impact.

Consider Scheduling+

Here at Scheduling+, we believe in giving our clients the opportunity to consolidate a variety of tasks and processes into a centralized location. Our employee scheduling and payroll system software lets managers take control of their workforce, schedule, processes, and general work environment. With a range of benefits we haven’t had the time to mention in today’s post, we believe learning more about Scheduling+ is in the best interest of any retail business owner. Reach out to us today to start your free trial!