Is your workforce scheduling system living up to your expectations?
From our work with various blue-chip organisations, we’ve found 3 common causes of why it may not…
1 Applying Business Rules
In an ideal world, an off-the-shelf software purchase would be ready to use from the get go, but most scheduling systems are programmed with a generic set of ‘rules’. If no adjustments are made to align these rules to the needs and parameters of your business, the system will generate job allocations in a way that appears to contradict the principal aims of the software. More often than not, this will lead your dispatchers to override the system and lose trust in its capabilities.
2 System Override
Manual intervention by dispatch teams disrupts the efficiency of automatic scheduling. Naturally, emergencies will occur and may require manual override from time to time. But if your dispatchers do not understand the knock-on effects of manual allocation, it is very difficult to stop problems spreading through your operations. Expensive inefficiencies will occur in the field and will damage the reputation you have with your customers.
3 Data Quality
Collecting data through easy-to-use software and relaying it back to decision makers is an almost fail-proof process, yet companies still struggle to reap the full benefits. This is often due to how field teams input data.
Anecdotal feedback from project leaders is very similar across the industry. They often refer to all jobs being ‘completed’ within five minutes of each other at the end of the day or that the data fed back simply doesn’t make sense. This lack of data quality reduces credibility and makes it difficult for decision makers to act on any performance indicators based around this software.
A Holistic View
With a holistic view of operations you can identify areas that have absorbed new efficiency methods and are performing well, but more importantly, discover which areas of the business may be creating barriers or are struggling to fully embed your scheduling system.
It is important to remember that a holistic or bird’s eye view does not necessarily mean the view of the directors or management. Rarely will any single employee in an organisation have access to a true holistic view of operations. To gain a clear view of what is actually happening there needs to be a thorough understanding of the day to day running of the business rather than the bottom line outcomes.
Most importantly, metrics are needed to understand exactly where improvements are needed and then to measure how successful those changes have been.
To obtain a holistic view of your operations and further understand how it can help you achieve a greater return on your scheduling system, please contact us or find out more about our Field Dynamics services here.