To reap the maximum benefit from workforce management software, you need to get your employees on board. Less than universal adoption diminishes ROI.
Here is a guide to a successful workforce management implementation. The practices outlined are from companies that have quickly achieved widespread employee participation.
Choose An Implementation Manager
Find a capable and inspiring leader to own the project. This doesn’t necessarily need to be someone on the Human Resources team. You want someone with enthusiasm who has successfully spearheaded company-wide employee initiatives.
Create An Implementation Plan
The first order of business for your implementation manager (IM) is to create a plan. Set a realistic timetable and schedule. Work with your wfm provider. Your account rep can provide an outline for an implementation schedule. Tweak it to fit your workforce.
Roll Out In Stages
Introduce each time tracking process in stages. For example, in the first couple of weeks, the goal is to get everyone to clock in with the new system. Then move on to shift trading, online time cards, etc.
Your IM will develop training materials. These need to be written for the least tech-savvy employee. Don’t assume anything is self-explanatory. It might be helpful to have the IM work with a new employee when creating the training program. The new hire can point out areas that need more explanation. Refine your training with their feedback.
Train Managers First
Your IM should train the managers first. Hold the managers accountable for their departments. Create incentives for managers to achieve universal adoption with their teams. If possible, give them a small budget for incentives. The ROI for the software will cover the cost. Your managers may want to set up a time tracking competition between departments.
Explain The Manager Benefits
It’s important that everyone understands the benefits of workforce management software. Get your managers on board first. If they aren’t inspired, they won’t be able to motivate their teams. Here are some of the benefits for managers:
- Improved oversight
- Tools to measure and achieve productivity goals
- Track time spent working away from the office
- Save time scheduling
- Transfer shift trading burden to employees
- No need to nag employees to fill out paper time cards
- Eliminate time card errors
- Approve time cards in minutes
- Data-driven decision making with analytics
- Increase billable hours with to-the-minute job costing
When managers understand the benefits, they can demonstrate the benefits to their employees. Hold managers accountable for adhering to the implementation schedule.
Communicate Employee Benefits
Expect some employee resistance at first. When employees hear that a new system is being rolled out, their first thought will be “How much extra time is this going to take?”
Workforce management software will save time and hassle. This must be emphasized and demonstrated. Specific benefits for employees include:
No More Paper Time Cards
This sounds simple but it is significant. Their time cards will now be calculated online automatically. No one will have to scramble to fill out their time card at the end of the pay period. There won’t be any paycheck delay if they fail to turn in a time card.
Get Paid For All Hours Worked
Automated time tracking holds employers accountable for paying employees for every minute worked. Workers don’t have to remember all the times they stayed late to complete a project.
This expands on the previous benefit. Not only will employees be compensated for time worked—they won’t be shorted wages due to system errors. Workforce management software imports accurate timekeeping data into the payroll system.
Validate Punctuality and Extra Hours
Workforce management software tracks punctuality. It also corroborates the willingness to stay later than the assigned shift end time.
Easy Mobile Clock In/Out
Offsite and mobile employees won’t be shorted hours when they are working away from the main office. If their shift starts when they leave home and head to their first appointment, they can punch in from a mobile device.
Accurate PTO Calculations
This is a biggie. Your employees will receive every minute of vacation time they earn. Wahoo!
Automated Job Costing
Assigning billable hours to the right client can be a huge hassle. When the employees can select a client in the wfm mobile app, it doesn’t matter if they are at their desk, on the road, or offsite. It only takes a second and is a minimal distraction.
Online Shift Exchange
Shift trading hassles kill employee morale. When employees can easily trade shifts on an app, they gain schedule control. Hesitant employees don’t have to text or call a manager when they need to swap a shift. Employees don’t have to keep reminding the manager of their schedule availability.
Since the online trade board is such a game-changer, roll it out within the first couple of weeks. When employees get the hang of online shift trading—it accelerates buy-in for the complete system.
Self-Service HR Information
Going through Human Resources for basic information is unnecessary with workforce management software. Employees gain an appreciation of this benefit over time. They can access important information night or day from their mobile device. There is no lag time while they wait for HR to respond to their request. Keep contact information up-to-date so there is no loss of communication. Update direct deposit information so there is no paycheck delay when switching banks. Pull up tax forms and benefits information. Access a specific company policy without a manual search in an outdated binder. When they start using this feature, they are surprised at how handy it is to get their questions answered immediately. It boosts job satisfaction quickly.
Throughout this process, your IM should be in constant communication with managers to track the progress. Solicit feedback and questions. Create an FAQ site, most wfm software has a way to do this.
Getting employee buy-in is crucial. Follow implementation best practices to achieve universal adoption.
SwipeClock partners help companies successfully implement workforce management systems. To speak with a workforce management implementation specialist, contact SwipeClock.
By Liz Strikwerda