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Rostering tips for forward-thinking HR leaders

02/11/2023 minute read OneAdvanced PR

In the ever-evolving landscape of people management, one aspect that remains crucial yet challenging is effective rostering. The advantages unlocked by a smart and streamlined rostering system are unparalleled.

With the increasing complexity of today's workforce—encompassing remote workers, part-time staff, and flexible working hours—traditional rostering methods are no longer sufficient. This article will provide insightful rostering tips for HR leaders, operations professionals and shift managers who are ready to embrace change, leverage technology, and adopt innovative strategies to stay ahead in this dynamic field.

What is rostering?

Rostering is a crucial cog in the gigantic machine that is workforce management, it covers the distinct stages involved in managing and organising the employees effectively. With an effective rostering system, an organisation can ensure that the right number of staff are present in the right place, at the right time to meet operational needs.

There are several types of rostering, each with unique characteristics:

  1. Duty rosters: This is the most traditional form of rostering where employees are assigned specific shifts or duties on a regular cycle. These staff rosters are common in industries such as healthcare, security, and hospitality where round-the-clock services are required.
  2. Flexible rosters: As the name suggests, flexible staff rosters offer more leeway for employees to choose their working hours within certain boundaries. This type of rostering can boost employee satisfaction and work-life balance and is becoming increasingly popular in modern workplaces.
  3. Staggered rosters: In staggered rostering, work start and end times are varied across the workforce. This approach can help manage peak workload periods and reduce congestion in workplaces or on public transport.
  4. Rotating rosters: Here, employees alternate between different shift times (morning, afternoon, night), providing fair distribution of desirable and less desirable work periods.
  5. On-call rosters: In some industries, it's necessary to have staff available on-call outside of regular working hours. These employees are not working but must be ready to work if called upon.

By understanding these different types of rostering, HR leaders can choose the best approach to meet their organisation's specific needs.

Why is effective staff rostering so important?

Effective staff rostering is critical for a variety of reasons:

  • Employee well-being: When rostering is done effectively, employees can better manage their work-life balance, leading to increased job satisfaction and overall well-being. This includes having predictable schedules, adequate rest periods, and the ability to plan personal activities around work.
  • Productivity & cost efficiency: A well-planned roster ensures that there are enough staff during peak times and not too many during quiet periods. This leads to enhanced productivity as employees are not overloaded or underutilised, both of which can lead to unnecessary costs.
  • Reduced staff turnover: Predictable and fair rosters contribute to job satisfaction, which can reduce staff turnover. Employees are more likely to stay with an organisation if they feel their time is respected and their personal needs are considered.
  • Improved customer service: In customer-facing roles, effective rostering ensures that there are enough staff to provide excellent customer service. This can enhance customer satisfaction and loyalty.
  • Compliance with labour laws: A good rostering system can help ensure compliance with labour laws and regulations , avoiding potential legal issues.

Effective staff rostering is not just about filling shifts, but also about caring for employees' needs and optimising operational efficiency. It's a key aspect of workforce management that can significantly impact an organisation's success.

Tips to make your staff rostering more efficient

Understand your business needs

Understanding the needs of your business is the first step to effective rostering. This includes knowing your busiest and quietest times, understanding the roles and responsibilities within your team, and being aware of any seasonal fluctuations in demand. This will help you create a staff roster that meets your operational needs while minimising unnecessary labour costs.

Know your staff

Knowing your staff's skills, availability, and preferences can make rostering more efficient. Some employees may prefer certain shifts, while others may have specific days when they can't work. Taking these factors into account not only makes the rostering process smoother but also contributes to employee satisfaction.

Use workforce rostering software

Workforce rostering software can significantly simplify and streamline the rostering process. These tools automate many of the tedious aspects of rostering, such as matching staff availability with shift requirements. They can also provide real-time updates, handle shift swaps, and even assist with compliance with labour laws. It's a convenient solution that can save time and reduce errors.

Communicate clearly and early

Clear and early communication is key to effective rostering. Make sure your staff knows when the staff roster is released, how to access it, and how to request changes. This can prevent confusion and last-minute scrambling to cover shifts.

Be flexible and fair

Flexibility and fairness in rostering can greatly contribute to staff satisfaction and retention. Try to accommodate staff preferences where possible and ensure that desirable and less desirable shifts are distributed fairly. Remember, a happy and engaged workforce is a productive one.

Staff rostering has come a long way in recent years, with the advent of newer technologies and the introduction of auto-rostering software in the market. The legacy rostering tools and techniques are slowly but surely becoming outdated, technology holds the key to the future of rostering. 

How workforce rostering software can revolutionise your HR processes

Workforce rostering software can significantly revolutionise HR processes, offering a range of benefits:

  1. Time saving: Rostering software automates the time-consuming process of scheduling, freeing up valuable time for HR to focus on more strategic tasks.
  2. Automated time-off requests: The software handles leave and time-off requests, reducing manual tracking and potential conflicts.
  3. Improved employee engagement: Balanced workloads, self-service scheduling options, and transparency can enhance employee engagement.
  4. Boosted productivity: Automated scheduling and balanced workloads can lead to increased team and employee productivity.
  5. Reduced labour costs: By aligning staffing with demand, rostering software can help manage labour costs effectively.
  6. Better work-life balance: Scheduling software allows for flexibility, contributing to a better work-life balance for employees.
  7. Enhanced communication: The centralised information system improves communication between staff and managers.
  8. Increased visibility and reduced errors: The software provides a clear view of schedules and reduces the likelihood of errors.

There are several benefits unlocked by a rostering software that can propel your HR operational cycle to the next level. OneAdvanced Time and Attendance, an automated rostering software, holds the power to ease the burden of complex staff rostering.

Staff rostering made simple with OneAdvanced Time and Attendance Solutions

Staff rostering can often be a complex and labour-intensive task, but with OneAdvanced Time and Attendance Solutions, it has become significantly simplified. It allows for flexible time and attendance tracking, proactive management of absence requests such as holidays and sick days, and even the ability to manage shifts, record attendance, and schedule annual leave from anywhere at any time.

Additionally, the Time and Attendance solution integrates seamlessly with the OneAdvanced Payroll solution making the calculation of salaries/wages simple and easy. The payroll is always accurate and there are no redundancies in the calculation of working hours. To discover more about time and attendance solutions, get in touch with our team today.

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