Clever rostering with SMS and email communication with employees

Posted on: January 19, 2014 | Categories: rostering scheduling StaffRosters Blog

Rostering programs with SMS capability mostly consists of create the roster and publish all the rosters out to employees via SMS. This is where most rostering programs stop today, very clever programs will allow the employee or contractor to reply back and accept the shift via SMS or e-mail giving visibility to the person rostering who is accepting and not accepting shifts.

With live visibility of employees accepting and not accepting scheduled shifts sent out by email or SMS operators can see how quickly shifts are being filled, but what happens when an employee or contractor changes their mind after accepting a shift, how does this get communicated back to the company scheduler. What is required in this situation is the ability for the employee or contractor to change their mind and communicate this change of mind back to the database.

The cleverest of rostering systems today now include apps that can be downloaded to employees smart phone. Employees from their own smart phone can view their roster, see approved time sheets, apply for time off or leave.


The best rostering apps now include management tools for managers in the palm of your hand. Anyone who rosters will know how much work is involved when staff call in sick and you must replace them to ensure the production line continues or to keep the patrons at the hotel happy with short lines when ordering drinks. I had my turn at rostering when working for Weston Bakes Foods many years ago, we always needed an exact amount of people to get all the orders out each morning, we were dealing with fresh cakes that just had to go out on the day they were made to preserve shelf life.

I would have 1 or 2 every night not show up out of a group of about 40 employees, some nights I would be out on the factory floor, get the message of a person calling in sick, then going back to my office to start calling phone numbers of casuals to find a replacement, this could take 5 minutes it could take 35 minutes.

Move forward to today, technology has changed, back then iPhones did not even exist. Today a manager can have all the employee information including schedules in the palm of their hand, you can get the message anywhere that a staff member needs replacing and from your smart phone in minutes you can organise the replacement and then get on with your work.

Wouldn’t it be nice if when an employee or contractor changed their mind after accepting a shift that they could communicate this electronically back to the dataset and in turn the dataset automatically went through the next best available employee or contractor with the correct criteria to fill the vacant shifts, sending out a fresh e-mail or SMS to the next best available employee or contractor…….. wouldn’t this save you some time

The future has all sorts of nice tools coming our way, if you are rostering from a spreadsheet, you should look at this. Rostering for the future

Does Weather affect your rostering or scheduling of employees?

Posted on: January 12, 2014 | Categories: rostering scheduling StaffRosters Blog

Does Weather affect your rostering or scheduling of employees?

Talking to hundreds of customers every month over the past few years with all sorts of adverse weather conditions impacting day to day sales I thought it was time to ask “Does Weather affect your rostering or scheduling of employees?”

I remember back when I first started working as a 14-15 year old in my fathers welding business, Speed was dad’s nickname but he was everything but fast, he built sheds and factories for people in the bush with orchards. He also spent a lot of time building silos for flour mills right across the central west of NSW. This was 30 years ago when I got my first experiences of how weather can impact a business. It was simple, if it rained and the job was outdoors then the work was called off for the day.

Often we experienced weather conditions that were to hot, welding back in those days was stick welding only, mig welding did not exist, we would be dressed in heavy blue one piece overalls that may well have been the first ever onesie.

Me with Dad

Hot weather stopped us welding when it went over 40 degrees Celsius or 104 Fahrenheit, but i bet ice cream shops, swimming pools, companies selling air conditioners, companies servicing air conditioners went gangbusters.

 Does Weather affect your rostering or scheduling of employees? maybe it is time to get a rostering or scheduling solution that understands weather impacts the rostering and scheduling of employees in your business

Read more about a rostering or scheduling solution that understands how weather affects the management of employees in your business

Cold Weather or worse snow like the USA is experiencing in early 2014 can cripple businesses even the businesses that are designed to make money while it is cold. the cold snap in USA in January 2014 has stopped entire towns from moving for days, thousands of flights have been impacted, hundreds of thousands of flying customers have been impacted.

Every one of the situations happening in USA especially the Midwestern United States will be impacting hundreds maybe even thousands of businesses including the rostering and scheduling of hundreds of thousands of employees.

One place hot pies and hot dogs will sell well in this cold snap will be when the Green Bay Packers meet the San Francisco 49ers as fans of the NFL’s Green Bay Packers vowed to brave the weather to see a playoff matchup that could stand as one of the coldest ever games in league history. In Green Bay, Wisconsin, football fan Jacquie Tucker Braun, 44, was undaunted by a forecast for temperatures below 0 F (-18 C) when the Packers match up with the San Francisco 49ers.

Read more about a rostering or scheduling solution that understands how weather affects the management of employees in your business


Rostering promises made but never delivered – Don’t let this happen to you

Posted on: January 7, 2014 | Categories: rostering StaffRosters Blog

At the end of last year I did not get a chance to write about an experience a recent customer shared with me after going live with our solution.

Prior to selecting Time & People as the preferred rostering supplier Applied & Decorative Painting had committed to another product including paying almost $1,000 to get the system up and running.

The issues Applied & Decorative Painting encountered after sign up with an incomplete solution included…

  • iPhone app promised at signup but not delivered
  • Integration with Xero promised but not completed
  • Could not roster staff into 2 jobs in one week

How can you possibly roster staff if you cannot roster an employee to do 2 jobs or actions in the same week, you should be able to include multiple jobs or departments in the same day!

Don’t let these issues become your issues, after several months of further promises Applied & Decorative Painting contacted Time & People, signed up for staff rosters and immediately removed all of the issues with the previous supplier.

Even today you will find many products not completed, partially completed or completed with many issues. Tell us about your existing issues today.

Book in a demonstration  and we will show you our iPhone app in action with an online live demonstration, you will also see further information about payroll integration from your rostering solution including Xero Payroll.


Complexities of 24 hour shift rosters

Posted on: December 19, 2013 | Categories: 12 hour shifts rostering scheduling StaffRosters Blog

Last week I was asked to complete a 6 week rotating roster, as we gathered the details from the customer it is interesting to see how different customers require different structures.

Based on the requirements the first thing we did was build a spreadsheet applying the maths behind each of the requirements ensuring the rules were being met.

This was for a 24 hour operation where each employee worked 12 hour shifts. Some of the criteria that had to be met included….
» Read the full article…

Rostering should be this easy

Posted on: December 19, 2013 | Categories: rostering scheduling StaffRosters Blog

We get asked a lot about rostering and scheduling, in the southern hemisphere we call it rostering, in the northern hemisphere it is called scheduling. Effectively customers are talking about allocating staff into sections or departments within the business for set periods of time that can often change from one day to the next.

The most common places for rostering or scheduling software is within companies that have high casual workforces, the retail industry and the hospitality industry for example.
» Read the full article…

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