An employee scheduling software is designed to automate the creation and maintenance of work schedules in an organization. These scheduling solutions increase efficiency by managing and coordinating tasks thus eliminating schedule conflicts. In this article, I analyze the factors to consider when evaluating the best employee scheduling software for your business.
Factors to consider when selecting an employee scheduling software:
1. Unique business needs: Before you start shopping for the software, it is important to define the specific HR challenges that you would like the software solution to resolve. Such unique requirements may include frequent communication breakdown in your team or late payroll processing. With the requirements in mind, you will be able to assess the best scheduling software solution for your needs.
2. Software Features and ease of customization: Different software solutions are designed to offer different suites of functionalities to their users. An organization should vet all potential scheduling software to check their conformity to the pre-defined requirements. For example, a company which runs in multiple locations should look for software which can allow for configuration of multiple locations. Also, an employee scheduling software should be easy to customize to meet the unique business requirements of the organization.
3. Price vs. Value Analysis: It is important to ensure that there is a direct beneficial relationship between the price of software and the value derived from it. An organization must ensure that it will be able to derive the maximum value from a scheduling software investment. In particular, a business must avoid the temptation to buy costly software just because it has a long list of features. It may later turn out that most of those features are not applicable in the business. Different vendors have different pricing and licensing management so an organization must choose the one with the best value for money.
4. Integration with existing systems: When purchasing an employee scheduling software, an organization must ensure that the software can easily be integrated with other systems in the organization. For example, the application should be able to export or import data from the payroll system. Further, the scheduling system should allow for easy data migration from any existing scheduling systems.
5. Support: The software vendor should have strong, structured support services. Software support contract should not only define the hours of support to be provided but also how such support is to be provided. It is important that your software vendor’s support department is available when you need them and in a way acceptable in modern times. A service-level agreement should provide the turnaround times (TATs) for issues resolution.
6. Report generation tools: The employees’ scheduling system must have a dynamic report generation tool. The reporting tool should be easy to use and must have the capacity to export the reports into different formats including CSV, PDF, and Excel.
7. Online and Mobile Access Capability: An employee scheduling system should be accessible to both the employees and management on the go. In today’s world, the employees should be able to have access to their schedules through mobiles devices at the comfort of their homes or the coffee shop.
8. Security: An employee scheduling system holds sensitive employee data. If the integrity of the data in the scheduling system were to be comprised, this would cause huge losses to the company. Consequently, the organization must ensure that the proposed system offers maximum data security.
9. Updates and upgrades: Another critical factor to consider when selecting an employee scheduling software is the frequency and cost of updates and upgrades. The organization must make sure that it does not enter into a contract that contains hidden future costs.
10. Internal or Cloud hosting: Both internal and cloud hosting architectures have their respective pros and cons. Depending on the organization’s unique business needs, consideration should be made on whether the scheduling system would be implemented internally or as a cloud service.
In this article, we analyzed the important factors to consider when selecting an employee scheduling software. With hundreds of software offering employee scheduling solution, at least in some form, it becomes a very difficult decision to make. By applying a strategic approach in making this decision, an organization can make the right decision on the scheduling software to buy.