Thin operating margins, makes controlling the rising cost of hourly workers vital for successful restaurants. While businesses strive to increase revenue in a competitive market, the cost of labor continues to rise. So, what can businesses do to gain control over their profit margins by managing labor costs?
For organizations with a large and diverse workforce, the single most effective strategy to boost productivity and immediately raise their profits is through efficient scheduling procedures. It is only through proper employee management strategies that a business can expect to get the best out of its workforce. Because of this; lots of thriving businesses have turned to new and improved resources, such as workforce scheduling software, to improve their management skills.
A schedule generator, also referred to as an online scheduler, or employee scheduling software, is a popular example of workforce scheduling software most successful companies are using today to improve employee efficiency.
With web-based scheduling software, a business can expect to maximize employee productivity through:
1. Painless scheduling – Automated scheduling systems, such as online schedule generators, are fast and can be accessed from any part of the world. These systems have the ability to create complete schedules within seconds, and in the same way, they have the capability to send schedules to the entire workforce within minutes.
2. Notifying employees when they need to work – Companies that use a schedule generator find employees are less likely to miss work. This web-based scheduler emails work schedules to employees as soon as they have been posted and even sends SMS reminders to their mobile phones hours before their shifts start. This gives them enough time to comfortably prepare for their shifts. Employees also get to access their schedules 24/7 by logging onto the schedule generator through their mobile phones and other devices. Some schedulers even allow employers to see when an employee was last notified of an upcoming shift – so no more lame excuses!
3. Balancing of employee requests – An automated schedule generator provides a podium where employees can personally set their preferences, change availability and request time off. With a click of a mouse, employees get to update their availability and to publish requests. An advanced schedule generator comes up with low-cost schedules while at the same time keeping the workforce happy and satisfied – never over or understaffing again.
4. Improving workforce satisfaction – There are many ways to boost staff satisfaction, but remembering their requests for time off, vacations, sick days and other schedule change requests increases employee morale. With an automated schedule generator, forgetting employee requests or losing their paper-based request becomes a thing of the past. As soon as a schedule generator receives a request, it stores it safely for the manager to address at his or her convenience.
5. Monitoring labor costs – Reports are very vital when it comes to managing any retail, hospitality and food-service business. A schedule generator generates various reports to enable businesses to monitor their scheduling needs and their labor costs among other needs. Managers are able to weigh theoretical costs against actual costs, to identify the employees or departments that are gobbling up the largest portions of their labor costs, to observe their real-time profits through bar-charts and much more.
6. Easing communication – A schedule generator makes it possible for managers or management teams to send instant messages and notifications across an entire workforce simultaneously with just one click. With this easy messaging option, the need to telephone employees reduces drastically, and so does the telephone bill.
7. Reducing employee turnover – When managers or scheduling teams regularly fail to adhere to employee requests, it usually results to a high turnover. A schedule generator controls employee turnover by recording all requests and availability changes. These changes appear automatically whenever a schedule is being made or amended making it highly impossible for managers and scheduling teams to forget a request.
8. Wiping out scheduling conflicts – Since a scheduling generator always avails all types of employee requests to whoever is making or adjusting a schedule, it becomes highly unlikely for a scheduling conflict to take place and in case it does occur, the software notifies management immediately. If, for example, an employee who is away on vacation gets scheduled erroneously, a schedule builder will automatically notify the manager or whoever is making or editing the schedule at that particular time.
9. Simplifying shift swapping – In most cases, both managers and employees take many hours trying to swap shifts. A single shift swap generally calls for around 4 phone calls with a manual scheduling process – time that could have been spent completing other tasks. With a schedule generator, employees get to give up and pick up shifts through their Smartphones, no more frantic phone calls or endless emails.
10. Age-based scheduling – With a schedule generator, businesses that hire minors during holiday breaks and weekends no longer have to worry about erroneously scheduling minors to work hours forbidden by the law. A good schedule generator should come with an age rule module that makes it possible for businesses to adhere to age-appropriate rules for both minors and seniors. This kind of scheduling system should also be in a position to automatically stop minors and seniors from being scheduled shifts they cannot work.
Old school scheduling processes are not only extremely time-consuming, but they are also repetitive and labor intensive. Retrieving or extracting important reports with such systems can also be a chore that slows down day to day operations of your business.