Beat the Holiday Scheduling Blues with Shift Planning Apps

Shift Planner Apps

The most festive time of the year has arrived. Mouth-watering cuisine, heaps of gifts, and bustling crowds of shoppers!

Understaffing your shops means you run the risk of missing sales targets. Overstaff, and your wage costs will spiral out of control. 

This balance can be achieved with shift planner apps. Let’s take a closer look.

Holiday Season Schedules Unwrapped

Retailers face many of the same challenges during the holiday season as they do during the rest of the year, but these challenges are amplified greatly.

This season is busier than Santa’s workshop. Retailers in the UK refer to October through December as the ‘golden quarter’ because of how important the season is to year-end revenue.

We expect your stores to be packed with shoppers not only browsing for last-minute gifts but also picking up online orders. Besides employees behind the counter, other employees will handle omnichannel purchases (such as posting, receiving deliveries, and wrapping gifts).

Holidays and special opening hours. If you live in Europe or the UK, your company may close early or completely on December 24, 25, and 26. And may extend hours on other days (even opening 24/7 in some cases).

You’ll need to adjust your weekly schedules, and if you’re operating internationally, you’ll have to take into account all these different holidays.

The employees will ask for vacation during December, even if they aren’t celebrating a particular holiday. Even if they don’t celebrate a particular holiday, it’s still an opportunity to spend time with friends and family. While building a work schedule, you’ll want to be as accommodating as possible to all of these requests.

Shift Planner Apps Have Many Advantages

 Standalone apps and mobile-first versions of our workforce management (WFM) solution.

There are a lot of similarities between the two versions, but the app has the advantage of being accessible on the go, which has a lot of advantages when it comes to scheduling.

Shift Planner Apps

The Employee Chooses the Hours That are Convenient for Them

Staff wanting more flexibility over holiday hours can benefit from a shift planning app.

These shift planner apps allows staff to do the following:

It’s time to swap shifts. Plans change. An employee cannot work on the eve of a public holiday after all. Instead, they would prefer to work on the eve of another holiday, such as new year’s eve. A shift swap is necessary!

The swapper searches the schedule to see who is working New Year’s Eve and sends a shift swap request. The swap agrees, and their manager is notified to approve or reject the swap.

Alternatively, you can set up swaps to be automatic, so no manager is required to approve them. In either case, shift planner apps ensure swaps are possible and compliant — both with your internal business rules and with local labor laws and collective agreements.

Get your workforce’s vacation calendar sorted early. Give everyone a deadline to request holidays through the app. Managers will then have a clear view of planned absences and potential staffing gaps.

In the majority of the year, managers can plan schedules top-down, but during the holidays, a different approach might be needed. Even the most carefully planned December shift plans are sure to trigger a flurry of “but I cannot work that day” replies from staff.

Employees can browse shifts to see which suits them best in shift planner apps after managers make a range of shifts available.

Managers Can Easily Make On-the-Spot Changes

It’s never a dull week with an extra-busy day on Tuesday, two employees calling in sick on Thursday, and holiday delays or low inventory over the holidays.

There is a need for quick, agile scheduling in all of these scenarios.

It’s easy to adapt to this whirlwind with a shift app. Edit and add shifts, approve shift swaps, and find out who’s available.

Every change is saved in real-time. All employees always have the most up-to-date schedule available.

Here’s how ALDI Denmark saves its store managers 30 minutes a day on admin.

Shift Planner Apps

Communication Made Easier with Shift Planner Apps

Using a shift planning app eliminates the need for emails or calls every time the schedule changes. Employees are instantly notified through the app. Managers save time while staff have peace of mind.

These shift planner apps also serves as an internal communication tool on a daily basis.

With Chat, our built-in instant messaging tool, employees can message each other or their managers during shift planner apps. Users who possess the appropriate permissions can send out no-reply announcements to either the entire organization or certain departments, in the meantime.

Retail businesses need a shift planning app to cope with the extra demand, as well as other tools in the shift planner apps’ all-in-one WFM solution, such as KPI reporting and payroll exports.

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