Employee Scheduling Software – Get the Information You Need
Author: Michael Shumko
Overview: Managers need to know what’s happening out in the real world. They can make plans all they want, but what actually takes place is not entirely in their control.
A manager prepares a schedule to describe when and where their employees are supposed to be working. That’s the plan; the reality may be different. Employees can be late, early, or not show up at all.
As employees check into and out of their scheduled shifts using the web, apps, telephones and time clocks, the employee scheduling system knows who to expect and when to expect them. It may even know where to expect them. It can be configured to alert the managers when employees don’t act according to the schedule. The manager can then take any required corrective action.
COMMON EMPLOYEE ACTIONS
AT START OF SHIFT
1) Checking In Early. An employee who is on the premises too early may not be authorized to be on site before their shift starts. It may be a security or safety risk for unauthorized personnel to be on the premises. The early start could incur overtime; an alert will remind the manager to verify the time-and-attendance.
2) Missing Their Check-In. The shift has started but the employee has not yet checked in. The employee may be running late or will not show up at all. The position is not being covered. This could be a security risk if the employee’s job is to watch over a critical process, protect a location, or take care of patients. Even if it is not a security risk, it may indicate that contracted services are not being provided to the client.
3) Checking In Late. The employee has arrived to work, late. As with a missed check-in, a post may not have been covered. The manager may receive one or more missed check-in alerts before the employee finally checked-in late.
4) Checking In Unscheduled. An employee might be permitted to check in even when they are not scheduled to work. Typically this happens when an employee is called in at the last minute to replace another employee who calls off or is a no-show. This check-in creates a new unscheduled shift. An unscheduled employee cannot be early or late; there is no schedule to compare against. The alert notifies the manager that the replacement employee has arrived on the job.
AT END OF SHIFT
5) Checking Out Early. The employee checked out earlier than scheduled. Possibly, the post is not being covered, which may represent a security risk. If a relief employee checked in early (which would generate its own alert) then it may not be a problem from a coverage standpoint, however it is not what was planned by the manager.
6) Missing Their Check Out. The scheduled shift has ended but the employee has not yet checked out. The employee may be working overtime. It may indicate that the employee is staying late to cover a relief employee who did not arrive on time. (Did the other employee get a Missed Check-In or Check-In Late?) The employee may simply have forgotten to check out, or may have left early and intentionally not checked out.
7) Checking Out Late. The employee checked out later than scheduled. It is possible that the employee is working overtime. Or it may indicate that the employee stayed late to cover a relief employee who did not arrive on time. The late check-out could incur overtime; the alert will remind the manager to verify the time-and-attendance.
8) Shift Check Out Completed. The employee has checked out their shift, with no indication whether it was late or early. It is especially useful for unscheduled shifts where this no specific expectation of when the employee is supposed to finish their shift.
DURING THE SHIFT
9) Missing a Safety Check. Safety checks are a valuable tool for the manager to know that the employee is still on the job. As its name implies, it can be used to ensure that the employee is ‘safe’ (e.g. a solo security guard in the middle of the night). Safety checks can be used even in cases where safety is not an issue. A missed safety check can also indicate an employee who has fallen asleep, or who has left the premises. Geofencing ensures that the safety check must be performed at a specific location; a missed safety check can indicate that the employee has left the premises.
10) Clock In from Unregistered Location. The schedule indicates when an employee should be working. The advanced employee scheduling system also specifies where an employee should be working. The employee can be required to check in at a specific geolocation, or from a specific phone number. The manager can be alerted when there is an attempt to check in from an unregistered location or unknown phone number. This applies equally to check-ins, check-outs and safety checks.
WHO GETS THE ALERTS
Each type of alert can have its own distribution list.
Three types of supervisors can be configured: Site supervisors who are responsible for client sites, Service supervisors who are responsible for different types of work, and Employee supervisors.
Alerts can also be sent to predefined ‘Other’ recipients, as well as to the employees themselves.
The alert messages can be sent by email as well as SMS text message.
Each type of alert can have an escalation process. For example, the employee may be sent the first alert for a Missed Check-In. Five minutes later if the employee has still not checked in then their direct manager may receive up to two alerts five minutes apart. If they still have not checked in after 15 minutes then additional managers might be added to the distribution list.
NO NEWS IS GOOD NEWS
The advanced scheduling system keeps management apprised of what is happening in the real world. It encourages Management by Exception, only alerting the supervisors and managers about events that require their attention. As long as everything is going well and employees are doing what they are supposed to do, then all remains quiet, and managers can concentrate on other, more important tasks than monitoring attendance manually.
To learn more about our advanced employee scheduling software, please contact us today!