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5 Best Shift Scheduling Software Programs

Perhaps no managerial job is more frustrating and maddening than creating a schedule for your employees. You have to remember vacation days, family or school schedules, and make sure you have enough people to cover every shift.

Even when you do all of that, your workers may still be unhappy most weeks.

  • They have too many hours…or not enough hours
  • Or they can’t work during the day…or at night…or on weekends
  • You forgot they’re going to be on vacation

Save yourself from headaches by using scheduling software. From programs to mobile solutions, there are a variety of ways to make your job easier. We look at the best scheduling apps and software.


Keys to Creating a Schedule

Before we get into specific software, let’s look at key things to remember when you’re creating an employee schedule.

Shift scheduling must-haves:

  1. Ensure all shifts are covered
  2. Ensure you have the right mix of employees on shift
  3. Check the calendar for special events, local celebrations, and holidays that affect how many employees you need
  4. Be careful not to overschedule or under schedule employees
  5. Be careful not to double schedule employees
  6. Ensure employees under age 18 work the appropriate number of hours
  7. Comply with all labor laws & state regulations
  8. Double-check your schedule for mistakes
  9. Triple check the schedule

So, now you have some guidelines to create a schedule. What are the best scheduling apps and software?

Shift Software That Meets Your Needs

The best shift planning software should allow you to create a database that will keep track of employee information, such as job titles, training, qualifications, availability, and time-off requests. With some programs, you can start a profile for an employee and then he or she can fill out the rest of the information.

Look for software the includes the ability to create a library of jobs and positions. For example, a restaurant might have categories for managers, waiters, hosts, cooks, dishwashers, servers, cashiers, and bartenders, etc.

The best software should also include integrated reporting features. This means the software can interface with other applications to create sales histories, forecasts, and other business reports.

Best Scheduling Software

What are some of the best shift apps and software? Here are 5 of our favorites, along with their advantages.

1. Deputy

  • Mobile-first
  • 24/7 support
  • Customizable features
  • Offers open shifts & shift swapping
  • Reasonably priced

2. Shiftboard

  • User-friendly interface
  • Features an applicant tracking subsection
  • Reasonably priced (for lower-level plans)

3. Humanity

  • Modern look & feel
  • High-tech scheduling functions
  • Includes reporting & forecasting interfaces
  • Automated scheduling
  • Integrates with HR & POS software

4. When I Work

  • Flexible platform
  • Intuitive user interfaces
  • API allows you to share data with payroll, POS & management programs

5. APS OnLine

  • User-friendly interface
  • Built-in payroll interface
  • Very customizable & configurable

Start with these 5 suggestions for shift planning and you will probably find one to meet the needs of your business.

Get with the Program with These Shift Scheduling Tools

Scheduling software can make your life as a manager so much easier. Using these options will make your job easier. Your employees will be more satisfied, too.

Be sure to check out additional resources and information about digital marketing strategies and the latest tools that can really transform your business.

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