Any scheduling manager is no stranger to the many complexities and downright obstacles that arise in scheduling workers. It doesn’t matter if you’re working with multiple teams or a single team, two shifts or a full 24-7 swing-shift routine – scheduling is one of the most challenging issues facing modern enterprises. Here are a few of the common factors that impact shift scheduling optimization. Managing overtime utilization
Scheduling teams across a variety of shifts can easily lead to massive overtime utilization without careful planning. But most enterprises are working with fixed budgets and want to avoid overtime costs where possible – so needless over-utilization is often frowned upon. Scheduling managers must balance minimizing overtime utilization while still optimizing schedules for top team performance.
Complying with regulations
Labor laws restrict the number of consecutive hours employees are permitted to work across the board, and there are some industries that have specific restrictions as well. These guidelines often serve as the bottom-line minimum standard when it comes to scheduling – but they can also throw a wrench in the most carefully-laid schedules that have required adjustments from the standard due to vacations and other unpredictable changes.
Maximizing team productivity
The shift schedule actually has a big impact on team performance. Some workers function at their best in the early morning hours, while others are at peak performance in the evening. It’s a shift scheduler’s job to be aware of these performance opportunities and maximize them – while also minimizing overtime and staying within regulatory guidelines.
Balancing skills and proficiencies
Shift scheduling would be pretty simple if the only thing required was a set number of employees on-site during a shift. But because teams are comprised of individuals with different roles and proficiencies, each team and shift must be carefully balanced to include the proper level of management, individuals capable of performing specialized tasks that will be required during that shift, and support staff capable of supplementing the rest of the team and occasionally supporting a role that’s not their primary area of expertise. essay writers online Distributing undesired shifts
Employee satisfaction is heavily influenced by shift scheduling optimization. There are always least-desired shifts in any industry – and no single employee wants to be the one assigned to those shifts while others always get the more-desirable schedules. It’s the quickest way to create a rift among team members and lower employee morale. That’s why it’s critically important to spread the least-desirable shifts among as many employees as possible to minimize any perceptions of favoritism or unfair treatment.
Coping with absences and unscheduled leaves
If operations relies on a given set of hands at any particular moment, relief crews and scheduled backups are almost always a necessity. Otherwise, a single unscheduled absence means someone will be frantically making phone calls – which may or may not result in someone stepping up to fill the shift at the last minute. Even this must be conducted with precision, the company could end up inadvertently violating regulations either by over-working an employee or by running a shift with fewer than the minimum staff required for safe operations. Either that, or it could be faced with halting operations for a full shift at worksite if it’s not possible to meet minimum staffing.
Shift scheduling is no easy feat. But technology makes it possible to optimize the task of shift scheduling, with solutions like shift rostering software that enable scheduling mangers to set rules and regulations, define company goals and objectives, maximize employee performance, accommodate preferences and even analyze schedules to pinpoint issues for further observation and analysis. With software tools that optimize the foundational layers of an enterprise, it’s no surprise modern companies are achieving the impossible.