Forecasting labor needs and creating a schedule that meets them is only half the battle. The other half is where you’re spending too much of your time: ensuring only qualified employees are assigned to each required position.
You may have spreadsheets or separate paper documentation of each employee’s certifications. This manual qualification management (QM) approach results in potential bottlenecks. Schedulers go to HR every week to request employee records, which may be out-of-date or illegible. Or the scheduler has their own documentation readily available, in the form of piles of paper that they have to sift through; then there is a complicated algorithm they have to keep track of in their head surrounding certifications, past hours worked, and availability for each employee to see who is best fit for each position. This plug-and-play approach can take hours and is prone to human error.
You may already have a digitized Qualification Management System (QMS). While this makes a scheduler’s job slightly easier by centralizing all this employee data, you are missing out on time-saving benefits if you are only using this as a record-keeping tool. Until you have a QMS that is fully integrated at the point of scheduling—and that schedule is being generated automatically with up-to-date employee data in mind—you are not fulling leveraging your QMS to allow your operations to function at its best.
Here are 3 ways an all-in-one automated QMS and scheduling tool can streamline processes and improve employee efficiency.
1. Get a Breadth of the Skills in Your Labor Pool
Employee success is determined by the skills they already have, their ability to learn new ones, and their capacity to keep highly relevant skills sharp.
But it should not be the responsibility of your employees to fill in talent gaps and stretch themselves too thin. It is the onus of the organization to determine what critical skills are missing and to either recruit new workers or upskill current ones accordingly. The right QMS not only provides centralized access to all of your employees’ skills and certifications, but it also lets you search and identify workers based on specific skills. This provides full transparency that can help identify which skills may be lacking in your labor pool.
2. Optimize Scheduling and Keep Operations Running Smoothly
Scheduling can only be truly optimal if employee skillsets match their job, and you cannot enhance operational efficiencies without an optimized schedule.
Consistently having the best, most qualified employee on the job will help ensure a smoother completion of the task at hand. By guaranteeing that everyone is eligible, you also avoid costly compliance penalties. Indeavor’s QMS helped one public safety agency save $8M in certification compliance fines. Click here to learn more.
Another improvement in operational efficiencies is that employee downtime is limited. If someone is scheduled to work a certain job that they simply cannot do, you may be paying an idle worker. Alternatively, that employee may try to complete the job but then fail, resulting in accidents, forced overtime, and other holdups in completing the task properly.
Perhaps most importantly, having a QMS with up-to-date employee data helps keep employees (and sometimes the public) safe. Someone at a food processing facility without proper FDA-mandated sanitization training should not clean the equipment; a food recall may result. An employee at a nuclear plant completing a task incorrectly could have dangerous, life-threatening results like explosions. The point is, QM protects both your employees and your brand.
3. Ensure Compliance – Even During Last-Minute Disruptions
We touched on how assigning unqualified employees can result in hefty fines. That is true for last-minute changes to the schedule as well.
When there are last-minute or previously unknown gaps in the schedule, supervisors are stuck relying on manual processes, like calling and leaving voicemails, to find another employee. In the rush to find a replacement, supervisors may forget to consider skills (resulting in an unqualified employee doing the job) or hours worked (resulting in OT). Both fail to optimize labor, as unqualified employees create bottlenecks during production and unbudgeted OT is costly.
Are you scrambling to find qualified replacements when a gap inevitably occurs? With an all-in-one automated QMS and scheduling tool, you can fill scheduling gaps quickly and in accordance to regulations.
The Indeavor Solution
With Indeavor Schedule, you can automatically assign employees based on an integrated skills matrix in minutes to ensure you always have the right person, in the right place, at the right time. With centralized access to all certifications, you can search and identify workers based on specific skills or ‘date last worked’ and be notified when qualifications expire. Organizations can use our system as a QMS if they have nothing in place, or they can integrate their existing QM system.
Click here to request a demo.
Indeavor’s solution offers clients an end-to-end, cloud-based employee scheduling and absence management system. By integrating with your human capital management and enterprise resource planning systems, you can leverage a robust platform that provides you with real-time employee data. Relieve your supervisors of manual tasks and the constant mental fatigue brought upon by scheduling changes by automating the entire process, connecting the data to all of your existing corporate systems, and ensuring you always have the right qualified employee in each position.