Scheduling Doesn’t Actually Matter: Here’s Why (April Fools!)

 
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Your complex, 24x7 scheduling environment probably doesn’t have scheduling software.

In fact, only about half of manufacturing facilities alone do. And that’s totally acceptable because we want to let you in on a little secret: as long as you have T&A software in place, scheduling doesn’t actually matter.

Time and attendance systems keep things simple. It doesn’t worry about fussy, dynamic things like demand. And we all know things that are simple are cheaper—and don’t create costly mistakes in the long-run.

Stop Worrying About Efficiencies

It’s all about simplicity!

Schedulers build the schedule for the week on either paper or computer spreadsheets to match the demand planner’s production schedule. As the basic shift schedule runs in the background, T&A systems only require that employees punch in. Simple, right?

And let’s say there’s an unexpected absence or shift swap that the plant manager is finding out about 10 minutes before the start of the shift. Since the T&A schedule is static, this simply requires someone to manually update it to match the real-time facility paper schedule so that the right people get paid. No worries though, manual entry errors rarely happen.

There’s a chance that an employee goes to punch in and the punch gets rejected. Again: no big deal. It’s all a misunderstanding. When a change to the paper schedule was made, you probably just forgot to update the basic schedule integrated in the T&A platform (along with the information hosted in the other HCM and ERP platforms you may have).

Mistakes happen, and your employees will understand when they don’t get paid.

Visibility is Overrated

The employee never really sees the basic schedule that the T&A system relies on (and that gets sent to payroll). That schedule also doesn’t give any insight into where someone is working in the facility. This is all to cut through the noise and keep the punch in/punch out system simple.

It doesn’t matter what position the employee is working; it just matters that they’re getting paid for the hours that they’re there. Besides, having information on the multiple jobs a single employee worked during one shift can’t be used for anything important like investigating who was working when an error or gap in production has occurred; or paying the employee their adjusted pay for working a job that paid two dollars more than their base wage for three hours.

Your shift employees don’t really care about this level of transparency.

Final Thoughts

Obviously, having a time and attendance system is more than enough to accurately distribute payroll. Scheduling the right person, in the right place, at the right time with the correct data in the right system to make sure things run smoothly is too complicated.

It can’t be done.

Michael Culver