The importance of cloud software in shift working environments
Working Time Solutions is proud to have released a major new update to our specialist workforce planning and management software WORKSuite®.
We’ve made a significant investment to ensure our powerful shift pattern design, rota scheduling, roster management, T&A, compliance & analytics tools can now be accessed online, via desktop and mobile devices.
It’s been designed to help employers avoid the headache of trying to maintain an optimised shift working environment using multiple spreadsheets or inadequate staff scheduling and rota systems.
For over 25+ years we’ve specialised in workforce optimisation in shift working environments…blending software and consultancy to help organisations improve efficiency, productivity and flexibility, whilst supporting compliance, wellbeing and employee engagement.
Designing and maintaining optimised shift patterns and rotas is more important than ever given the need to manage costs, improve performance and recruit and retain the best talent.
Creating a SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) version of our technology ensures we can help more organisations by transforming the way they plan, manage and monitor their shift workers.
Why does the cloud matter?
WORKSuite® is an established and proven set of tools used by a diverse range of organisations in manufacturing, utilities, air services, e-commerce, government, healthcare and many other sectors.
It’s set itself apart from other staff scheduling or rota software because it’s been designed from the ground up to optimise resourcing in shift working environments.
This means it has unique tools, functions and workflows that streamline and automate key processes and make both the strategic planning and day-to-day management of shift workers more efficient, consistent and accurate.
The latest release ensures all this power and functionality can be accessed via browsers on desktop and mobile devices.
This opens up the potential for many more organisations using shift patterns to harness dedicated workforce optimisation software to generate significant, sustainable benefits for all stakeholders.
How can cloud-based workforce management benefit you?
Being cloud-based delivers a wide range of benefits to employers of shift workers including:
Plugging system gaps
Whilst HR, T&A and ERP software is central to how many organisations operate, most of these generalist systems lack the advanced shift planning, scheduling and management capabilities needed to support workforce optimisation.
With WORKSuite® now in the cloud, either inadequate technology can be replaced, or its limitations can be easily overcome through integration.
Using API (Application Programming Interface) technology, the software can seamlessly integrate with other workforce systems, avoiding complex IT issues and making configuration much quicker, easier and more cost effective.
This means organisations can maintain their existing systems whilst benefiting from specialist software capable of handing the complexities associated with workforce planning and management in shift working environments.
Existing HR, T&A and ERP systems also benefit from being connected to a stream of live working time data, ensuring accurate, up-to-the-minute information is being fed to functions such as payroll.
Employers of shift workers often rely on multiple spreadsheets and systems to plan schedules and manage their staff.
The complex, laborious and often duplicated manual workflows associated with this creates a huge administrative overhead and increases the risk of inaccuracies.
By putting WORKSuite® in the cloud, those responsible for day-to-day administration and tactical planning can carry out all tasks on a single, unified platform.
Users benefit from efficient and consistent automated workflows and a single database of working time information that provides immediate visibility over variations, cover and balances.
Having a dedicated workforce planning and management solution in the cloud means you can immediately gain an accurate forward view over who is on shift (hours worked, availability and skill sets) and confidently reschedule resources in real time…adapting schedules, shift patterns and rotas to meet changing requirements.
Traditional ‘on-premise’ workforce planning and management solutions are usually tied to a physical location. Likewise, some software which claims to be cloud-based is actually hybrid…using online interfaces to connect to legacy ‘on premise’ systems.
Naturally this places some limitations on capabilities and how or when the tools can be used.
With the new version of WORKSuite® being designed from the ground-up to be used in the cloud, it can be securely accessed 24/7/365 via desktop and mobile devices at any location where there is an internet connection.
As the software is browser-based, managers, shift planners and staff will benefit from a streamlined interface and MyTime employee self-service app that are easy and enjoyable to use.
This allows workforce planning and management in shift working environments to become much more dynamic and responsive. Managers can quickly make changes as and when required, and employees have the ability to request holidays and shift swaps via self-service functionality.
Workforce information is highly sensitive, so insecure spreadsheets or paper trails pose significant data compliance risks.
The cloud-based nature of WORKSuite® means employers can rely on class-leading security methodologies and standards which include sophisticated technical & physical controls to maintain security and prevent unauthorised access.
The fully digital nature of cloud solutions also provides high levels of authentication, encryption, access controls and auditing, ensuring employers have a single, secure GDPR-compliant database of working time.
Aside from the wide-ranging benefits WORKSuite® delivers, putting our workforce planning and management software in the cloud provides clients with significant additional value.
Cloud deployment enables simple, remote configuration, implementation and integration, removing the need for servers, software installation or infrastructure maintenance.
This minimises up-front costs and ensures the benefits of workforce optimisation are realised sooner.
Crucially, being cloud-based means that WORKSuite® automatically upgrades to the latest and most feature-rich version of the software. Users will therefore benefit from an ongoing development programme that regularly introduces valuable new functionality.
So, what now?
Take a look at the information on this website if you’d like to know more about the shift pattern design, scheduling, roster management, T&A, compliance & analytics capabilities of WORKSuite®.
Alternatively, if you’d like to learn more about workforce optimisation, check out our CPD-certified workforce planning and management events and webinars.