Labor shortages and increasingly critical employees mean that organizations have to be smarter and more flexible when it comes to staff planning. This involves challenging planning puzzles. Modern, powerful software tools can simplify these puzzles and therefore also help to increase employee satisfaction. In addition, the applications strengthen the bond between the employees and the company. They also help organizations in their efforts to achieve optimal employee performance in optimal conditions.
Get a grip on labor market quirks and staff wishes
The challenges in the area of staff and staff planning are many and varied. On the one hand, there is the shortage on the labor market, and on the other hand, there are clear shifts in job interpretation. In addition, the assertiveness of employees is evolving and they are expressing preferences for working hours and locations. Employees want more control over these matters, and may even wish to create their own planning. Does this development also place you in the situation where you can no longer manage with your current planning tools? Creating schedules for dozens, hundreds or thousands of employees manually is completely out of the question.
Are your KPIs smart enough?
When it comes to staff planning, the situations within government organizations, healthcare institutions, controlling bodies or, for example, logistics companies are similar. You know what KPIs matter, what goals you are pursuing with your planning. You will have to guarantee services to customers and take travel times into account (plus: want to minimize those travel times). Usually, several KPIs determine how good a plan is. Unfortunately, for most organizations, these KPIs are not formulated in a ‘smart’ way. It is not clear enough why a plan is the way it is. Good planning is a balancing act between various KPIs. It is not easy, especially for planners, to explain why a balance that has been found is good.
See who is available and is able to do a job
Even if you have optimized your planning in the long run, this does not necessarily mean that it will be implemented as intended. Short-term planning is a challenge. Software support is indispensable and shows who is employable. Is someone able and certified to carry out something? Does he/she have time? Can the employee work according to the Working Hours Act and the applicable collective labor agreement? Which employee do you prefer and is that the cheapest or the most expensive person? Is this employee the best candidate for the job now, or is he/she the best candidate in terms of planning for the slightly longer term?
Employee scheduling software: give employees responsibility
Combine the experience and insights of the planner with the calculating power of a smart application, and you will quickly see whether an existing schedule is correct or not. Prevent violations of working time laws from resulting in fines, for example. In addition, the software and apps for mobile use are an ideal way to improve employee satisfaction. Employees who can submit a request for a shift via an app or who can partially compile their own work schedule will appreciate this. If an adjustment is still needed, and is possible on the basis of mutual consultation, this can be rewarded. The application keeps track of whether a work schedule is regular and ergonomically sound. Employees appreciate this and, together with more responsibility, it leads to less absenteeism.
Include planners in the change process
A modern employee scheduling application takes work off your hands, prevents fines and keeps employees happy. But rolling it out requires change management. Equipping the software with all the important elements required for planning is one thing, dealing with objections to a changed schedule is quite another. Planners are people and therefore sometimes stubborn. Accepting a proposed schedule just like that can feel ‘strange’ and requires explanation and insight into how the application works. If you want the software to be successful within your organization, make sure you involve the planners closely in the roll-out. If you take that part seriously, there are also serious benefits for the taking. You make your organization more attractive to employees and benefit from an ROI that is sometimes as short as 6 months. A small percentage improvement in costs can quickly turn into a large collective saving.
Make a difference as an employer with Field Service Planner
Field Service Planner is the application we use for employee scheduling. This is software based on Quintiq technology. It is equipped with all kinds of ‘what if’ scenarios. This gives you and your planners insight into the consequences of a change in the planning, without it already having been implemented. If the preliminary employee scheduling is satisfactory, you can easily connect it to other applications such as SAP or Plato. You make the difference as an employer, for example, by using participatory scheduling. At the same time, you benefit from lower absenteeism figures. If you choose Ordina’s Field Service Planner and Ordina as your knowledge partner and implementation specialist, then, as a company, you will have a solid story to tell your employees.