Whether you are a worker who’s trying to find a way to check your schedule online, or even a manager trying to find methods to simplify the circulation of one’s employee schedules, getting a suitable solution can be a tedious task. You will find literally hundreds of tens and thousands of choices available on the market (go ahead; Google “employee scheduling”). After a deeper look, you will begin to realize you will find only a small number of truly web-based solutions available (even fewer enterprise-grade solutions).
These 7 tips will help prepare one to look for an appropriate vendor for your employee scheduling software.
1. 100% web-based.
Web-based software (I prefer to call it web-ware), requires no download and no installation, it is simply ready to use once you login to their website https://greatpeople.me. Most web-ware emerges as a service; meaning you need to sign up to put it to use (monthly and yearly subscriptions are most common). Web-based software, or Software-as-a-service, is fast becoming the software delivery model of choice. Just look at Google or Facebook!
2. Backups, backups, backups.
Ensure the service features a rock-solid application data backup and restoration plan. Most web-ware solutions include this, however, many offer it being an add-on service. Make sure you will find no hidden fees of a restoration should there be described as a data-related issue in the future.
3. Lifetime upgrades.
The web makes for immediate delivery of software updates to user-communities. However, some web-ware vendors don’t include free upgrades as part of their baseline subscription packages. Make sure you ask what the upgrade policy is before signing on the dotted line.
4. Easily customized.
The chance of finding a solution that fits your entire scheduling requirements is highly unlikely. However, many leading vendors provides customization services that permit you to bend and shape their offerings to better meet your unique needs.
It is important to know the way you should use your scheduling data once it is being managed digitally.
5. Wireless portal.
Your employees want access to their schedules. As well as providing access online, a solution that enables your employees to get into their schedules wirelessly (on their cell or PDA) will reduce the amount of time you’ll spend communicating scheduling information to employees.
Enabling a shift-trade between two qualified employees, without any intervention from management (other than final approval) is a total must. We know all too well that employee availability may change extremely quickly, by allowing employee driven shift-trades you can empower employees, and ensure their responsible for getting a suitable replacement before time.
7. Intelligent scheduling algorithm.
The true power of scheduling software is the interior algorithms. It should take into account; employee availability, skill-level, AND preferences when deciding who to schedule for just about any particular shift. Ask questions about the auto-scheduling features and make sure you understand their limitations.