People and time are important competitive factors these days. Therefore, the well-planned workforce management is a fundamental requirement for companies to be successful. This task is often very complex. A number of companies rely on digital solutions. But which one is the right HR planning software (PEP) for your company? We offer you some tips on how to find the right solution and would like to introduce some key providers.
Workforce Scheduling Software: What is it?
The main task in workforce deployment planning is to have the required number of employees with the required qualifications in the right place and at the right time. This is always a question of attracting the right number of highly qualified employees exactly when they are needed. The need for people can change in the short, medium or even long term. There can be staff shortages or expensive idle time and overtime.
HR planning is a key area of responsibility for the human resources manager and the management, as the planning of personnel capacities and costs can have a long-term impact on corporate planning and strategy. It is even more important to precisely control this complex planning process. This is not an easy task given the complexity of the content, the high demands on data quality, the great number people involved in the process, the quick coordination processes and the numerous sources of information. The use of PEP software is therefore indispensable for many companies. It not only reduces the effort, but can also coordinate the planning process much better with the goals to be achieved and make it transparent.
It is just as time-consuming to draw up and manage shift schedules. Planners have to consider a variety of aspects, including internal agreements, legal regulations and employees’ preferences. Sometimes it is required to completely restructure the deployment planning due to staff shortages. If duty rosters are created using Excel or on simple paper sheets, it can lead to cumbersome and error-prone lists, paper chaos and time-consuming communication via e-mail or telephone. Digital shift planning, on the other hand, offers numerous advantages for management, HR employees, shift planners and, last but not least, for the employees concerned.
The workforce deployment planning software helps, for example, with the planning of workforce deployment for single and rotating shifts, it can ensure visibility based on daily attendance checkups and annual vacation planning, and support the analysis of deployment and vacation time periods as well as the creation of duty rosters for each employee. The software for workforce scheduling is usually industry-neutral. However, there are also PEP solutions for special sectors such as health care, retail, for social institutions and facility or event management.
Here is workforce scheduling software comparison
Time management and workforce deployment planning
- suitable software solutions in comparison
We will find the right HR software for you!
Workforce Planning Software: What Are its Benefits?
Those who plan their staff assignments with software, generally benefit from several advantages at the same time. The software uses human resources more intelligently and efficiently, reduces personnel costs by avoiding expensive overtime and idle time, motivates employees and improves customer satisfaction through precise and transparent planning.
Software for personnel resource planning offers the following advantages:
Automation as a Key to Precise Planning
If planning processes are automated in a company, this saves time bypassing errors. This also applies to the planning of personnel assignments. The manual creation of complex duty rosters with piles of notes and Excel lists, which are also confusing and difficult to handle from a certain size, is also time consuming. With digital workforce planning, on the other hand, many processes are automated. This helps save time.
Shift planning is also an error-prone process, especially when done manually. Shift planners have to consider numerous factors and always adapt the planning flexibly to changing circumstances. The manual entry of an assignment agreed by telephone, for example in a shift plan, is not only time-consuming, but also leads to media discontinuities and extra work. Corrections and changes in the plan can lead to further errors.
Such mistakes can be avoided with the help of workforce planning software, since the processes are automated. Changes in the plan are visible immediately. The smart software recognizes planning conflicts and warns if you want to assign an employee to the same shift more than once, or reports if a team member cannot be assigned to a shift due to vacation or illness. In the case of manual planning, the person responsible for the shift plan must first consult other documents such as vacation plans, etc.
The creation of a duty roster is usually very time-consuming: various phone calls and emails may be necessary to find out which employee is available. A digital solution makes it possible to react flexibly and quickly through short, direct and uncomplicated communication channels. Once the shift plan has been published, each employee is automatically kept updated instead of having to contact each colleague individually. In addition, no private channels of the employees have to be used for communication.
Once it is determined what is required to prepare and execute a future project, HR management software helps to effectively plan human resources and keep track of financial results throughout the life of the project. The planning effort can thus be reduced to a minimum at the same time significantly reducing the time required for all planning measures. This increases effectiveness, avoids frustration, saves workload and therefore money. The software tool provides a general overview of workforce deployment and helps to bypass resource bottlenecks and possible difficulties. Effective workforce scheduling also ensures that team members be deployed according to their professional qualifications. It can help to prevent employees overload and possible project delays that can be rather costly for the company.
Better Overview and More Transparency for Everyone
Excel spreadsheets or plans in paper form are often confusing because you have to search in different columns and compare data. Digital solutions, on the other hand, are designed to show the planner at a glance whether all shifts are sufficiently staffed and which employees are available. The hours of the employees can be counted online and possible conflicts can be displayed. Every change is immediately visible in real time. A digital tool also gives employees a better overview: They can find out about their working hours online at any time – with some software solutions also via mobile app.
Happier Employees – Higher Employee Retention
In addition, HR planning software directly involves employees in the planning process. This gives them the opportunity to get an up-to-date overview of their duty roster and any changes online at any time. The planning processes are understandable for everyone. Some software solutions allow employees to independently apply for shifts. This promotes self-determination and the satisfaction of the team members and saves a lot of potential for conflict. After all, the use of a software solution is more up-to-date and can ensure greater loyalty to the company, especially among younger people.
Data Protection Compliant with Labor Law Requirements
Data protection also plays an important role in workforce deployment planning. Personal data, such as the name and address of the employee as well as working hours, vacation and sick days or overtime must be protected and may not simply be published and made accessible to other team members. The public posting of a duty roster – customary in many companies, is therefore problematic for data protection reasons.
Workforce planning software meets all GDPR requirements and is functional at the same time. It grants employees access to their roster without giving them access to the personal data of other employees. The employer or planner can use rights management to control exactly what employees can see.
The digital recording of working, break or absence times fuels the fear of the “transparent employee” in some people. In fact, the use of a corresponding software solution has advantages: the detailed recording of working times is a prerequisite for employees to take the breaks and rest periods to which they are entitled. The system can warn when rest and break times are undercut. In this way, employees are protected and the employer is supported in complying with legal obligations.
Scope of Functions: What Can People Resource Planning Software Do?
Software solutions for HR planning have various functions. In the simplest case, they offer planning templates in which the planner can allocate shifts, working hours or reasons for absence to his employees. More comprehensive systems also calculate the expected future status of the time accounts based on the current planning status and the current status of the time accounts. In addition to the standard functions, some systems can display the extent to which the respective personnel requirement is covered or whether there is an oversupply or shortfall.
A classic software for workforce scheduling includes the following functions:
- Templates through which working hours can be planned
- Sharing the schedule with the entire team
- Projection of time accounts based on planning
- Overview of demand coverage based on planning
- Management of shift changes and automatic reminders of upcoming shifts for employees. Presentation of shift-related personnel requirements
- Features to track team member availability, vacation/time-off requests and approvals
- Interfaces for importing data from time accounts or exporting schedules
- Labor cost planning features
- Flexible access to real-time schedule updates via a mobile app
Workforce Scheduling Software Comparison: How Can You Select the Right Software?
The market offers countless software solutions for workforce deployment planning. A basic distinction is made between different types. Some solutions are explicitly dedicated to personnel planning. All functions relate to the planning process. There are also time recording systems with integrated planning software. These programs focus on recording hours worked. They are supplemented by a number of planning modules. There are also HR software solutions that also support workforce deployment planning. But be careful: Not all these complete solutions for human resources management have these functions.
Whether you represent a small business or a corporation with more than 10,000 employees, there is a suitable workforce deployment software for every company. It is important to include the workflows and processes directly in the planning when selecting digital workforce deployment planning.
You should consider the following criteria when making your selection:
- Number of employees and their location
Depending on the size of the company, the requirements for PEP software vary greatly. The more are employees and locations, the more complex is the planning process. Some software solutions are only suitable for small, single-site businesses. Others are designed for growth. What does the future of your company look like? Would you like to expand and open more locations? Then select a solution that meets both current requirements, and your plans for the future.
- Time Tracking Included
For some companies it is important to precisely record the working hours of the employees. This is especially the case when billing is on an hourly basis. For other companies, on the other hand, it is sufficient to document the presence of employees. This is something to consider when selecting a provider. Because some software solutions for people planning offer an integrated time recording.
- Mobile Solution – Yes or No?
Are your employees working from home or traveling a lot? Or would you like to take care of resource planning outside of the office if necessary? Then a web-based solution is recommended. With a mobile app, you can plan flexibly at any time and send employees messages and reminders directly to their mobile device.
- General or Industry-Specific Solution
Most digital people planning solutions can be used in all industries. However, there are also industry-specific solutions that are tailored to the special requirements of a company, such as gastronomy or care. If you are looking for a solution tailored to your needs, you should consider an industry solution.
- Additional Functions and Extras
A considerable number of HR planning software has additional functions such as communication features, overtime control or personalized access for certain employees, and so on. But not every company needs all the features. So think carefully about what your business really needs.
- Number of employees and their location
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Workforce Scheduling Software Comparison: Find the Right Provider
ATOSS Software AG has been specializing in professional HR management and software for demand-optimized worforce deployment planning for around 30 years. The company offers solutions for all industries and company sizes. The Atoss Workforce Management solution supports companies in capacity and schedules planning as well as time and attendance recording. The cloud-based software has classic time management tools and mobile apps. It enables a detailed determination of personnel requirements, sophisticated worforce deployment planning and strategic capacity and requirements planning. The PEP software offers comprehensive functions and is completely platform-independent.
Disadvantage: the solution is partly complicated.
Medifox develops software solutions for the care industry. Medifox is aimed at all tasks – from administration and planning to documentation and billing. In order to be able to plan personnel resources efficiently, the program includes an integrated people resource planning including a multi-level duty roster, a time recording as well as a vacation and training administration.
The HR management solution Teamhero is particularly suitable for use in personnel-intensive companies. The software application can be used by companies as a central platform for personnel administration. For this purpose, functions are integrated into the program, which can be used in the areas of workforce deployment planning, employee recruitment, timekeeping and document management. Teamhero is offered by the manufacturer as a software-as-a-service solution and can therefore be used independently of the device.
Ultimate Kronos Group (UKG)
Kronos is one of the global market leaders in workforce management solutions and software for workforce scheduling in the cloud. In 2020 the company merged with Ultimate Software. The Ultimate Kronos Group (UKG) supports companies worldwide with the software solution UKG Ready in time recording, workforce deployment planning and absence management in order to control personnel costs, minimize compliance risks and sustainably increase both productivity and employee satisfaction. Designed for companies with 100+ employees, UKG Ready is a cloud-based solution that offers competency tracking, performance management, shift swaps and more.
ZMI develops software solutions for companies of all sizes and industries. With the ZMI complete solution for time recording, working times, project times and order times can be counted anywhere, digitally and in real time – whether via stationary terminals in the company, online in the web browser, mobile terminals in the construction container or vehicle as well as with apps for iOS and Android on smartphones or tablets. In addition, there are additional modules for a digital personnel file, automated driver’s license control, workflow management and access control.
Workforce Deployment Planning Software Providers in Direct Comparison
|Type||General workforce planning software||Industry solution||General workforce planning software software||HR Software||All-in-one time tracking solution|
|Target group||Companies of all sizes and industries||Care company||Personnel-intensive companies||Company with more than 100 employees||Companies of all sizes and industries|
|Functions||Very extensive||Tailor-made for the industry||Above average||extensive||Few planning tools|
|Look & Feel||Partly complicated||Intuitive
6 language versions
|Simple and clear||Intuitive and user-friendly||Easy handling|
|Service||24/7 Live-Support||24/7 Live-Support||Self service,
|Email, chat, phone, knowledge base||24/7 Live-Support|
|App-Version||Yes.||Not for stationary||No.||Yes. Cloud based||Yes. Cloud based|
|Price||No free version, no free trial||Individual financing concepts, e.g. leasing||No price indication||Good value for money||No free version, free test possible|
Conclusion: Software for HR Planning
Planning personnel assignments with software brings many advantages to a company. It saves time and money. It ensures flexibility, transparency and happier employees. The market offers a variety of different software programs for HR planning. The good news is that depending on the size of the company, industry and requirements, there is a suitable solution for every one. It is important to ask yourself the right questions in advance. How do I use the software? Which features bring me real added value? How can the program help me achieve my goals? And above all: In HR work, “only” digitizing workforce deployment planning is clearly not enough to consider. Rather, one should see the digitization of HR planning as part of a strategic upheaval.