The second part of streamlining your roster process is storing all of the information that you require about each employee. Constantly updating this information will make schedule building easier and more efficient.
Define your locations and roles
It is very important to be familiar with how your business is split, and be aware of what your workforce does within each location. Documenting this information will help when it is time to build your schedule template; it will simplify ‘who can fill each shift’ (more on these points below).
Here is an example of how a restaurant might split up ‘locations and roles’. This will assist you when you decide how to set your own up:
Two of their locations might include: ‘dining’ and ‘bar’.
Within the dining location there are the roles of ‘chef’, ‘dish washer’ and ‘waiter’.
Within the bar location there are the roles of ‘glass-washer’ and ‘bar-tender’.
Know your employees
Keeping a list of your current employees and their schedule related details, readily available, will make building your schedule much easier. Important details include:
Name – first name, (any preferred name), and last name, is a good idea.
Contact method preference – mobile or email are best.
Contact details – this should match his or her contact method preference.
Base rate of pay – for doing quick calculations on schedule costs.
Extra notes – good place to store bits of info like ‘does not like working weekends’, ‘qualified to operate pokies’, ‘does not work well with so-and-so’ etc.
Roles – a list of roles that each employee is qualified to fill, based on the list you prepared in the previous stage.
Maintain a roster template
The major error made by businesses, is to fail to use a ‘schedule template’. A roster template can be thought of as a ‘base schedule’ which is copied each time a new schedule is written. The advantages of maintaining a roster template include:
- Being able to work on a roster throughout the week (adding and trimming hours, based on needs) without affecting the current schedule which is in use.
- You do not have to add specific employee names to all/any shifts, instead concentrate on allocating shifts based on the roles you need to fill (putting your business first).
- You can store several ‘roster templates’ which can be used for different seasons, or for different scheduling situations.
Another way to go about having a roster template is by building your roster based on a copy of last week’s roster. Once you have done the copy be sure to check for clashing time-off requests.