Employee scheduling software is not one size fits all. Since scheduling needs vary greatly by industry, scheduling software will vary, as well. Before selecting a scheduling solution, it’s important to consider the needs of your business against the features of the specific scheduling software.
Static Scheduling vs. Dynamic
First, and perhaps most importantly, consider whether your business operates on static scheduling or dynamic scheduling. Static scheduling, often called shift-based scheduling, applies to businesses that rely on a fixed schedule where there is little-to-no variation in shift schedules.
Businesses that use static scheduling generally have two or more shifts that need to be covered in a 24-hour period. For example, a 24-hour diner must schedule servers for three eight-hour shift to cover the around-the-clock service.
Another defining characteristic of static scheduling is a fixed time and place. For instance, a grocery store requires a set number of registers to be filled during set operating hours (e.g., 7am to 10pm). The cashiers always work in the store and never offsite or outside the predetermined store hours.
Dynamic scheduling is used in industries with variables that constantly change times of work shifts, as well as the location of the worksite or client. Examples of businesses that rely on dynamic scheduling include home care agencies, pet sitting services, cleaning services and HVAC technicians.
Scheduling software is very specific, so the platform will often cater exclusively to either static scheduling or dynamic scheduling, but not both. About 70 percent of the scheduling software on the market is geared toward static, shift-based scheduling. Only 30 percent of products, including TimeCurve Software, is developed specifically for dynamic scheduling.
Finding the Right Scheduling Solution
As mentioned above, it’s important to select software based on your business’s style of scheduling. TimeCurve was created specifically for small- to mid-sized businesses that operate on dynamic scheduling. TimeCurve is a cloud-based software, so it’s easy to set up and use. Plus, the application integrates with QuickBooks and Electronic Visit Verification for additional functionality.
Lastly, when selecting any employee scheduling solution, it’s important try it out before committing. TimeCurve offers a free 30-day trial, so you can make an educated decision and determine if it’s a right fit for your company.
Employee scheduling software should be flexible enough to accommodate the vast majority of your HR and business needs. Unlike other solutions, TimeCurve Software has been specially designed to incorporate QuickBooks for accounting tasks, as well as Electronic Visit Verification (EVV) systems for employee time management.
Here’s how these two essential platforms can be integrated into scheduling software for a more productive and efficient experience:
QuickBooks and TimeCurve Integration
QuickBooks is a financial accounting service designed for small businesses. It offers capabilities for money management, expense billing, sales invoicing and more. Most notably, QuickBooks and TimeCurve can be dually integrated, so payroll and invoicing is a breeze.
Specifically, TimeCurve integrates with QuickBooks by importing clients and employees from QuickBooks. TimeCurve also can export client invoices and employee payroll timesheets to QuickBooks from TimeCurve.
With hours and rates logged in the TimeCurve portal, the essential information is instantly exported to QuickBooks for quick, headache-free payroll processing and invoicing. Consider this easy, breezy scenario: A company services a hundred clients, all of whom need to be invoiced bi-weekly. In QuickBooks alone, hand-creating a hundred detailed invoices would take hours, if not days. And then two weeks later, the process would have to be repeated. With TimeCurve, this never-ending cycle is eliminated and the process is fully automated. TimeCurve uses this feature to create invoices based on client schedules and seamlessly exports them into QuickBooks.
Similarly, creating payroll for a hundred employees is a tedious task. TimeCurve automates this process as well, eliminating stress and wasted time.
Electronic Visit Verification
Long are the days of punch cards! Electronic Visit Verification (EVV) enables telephone or computer-based service that electronically confirms when employees clock in or out for their shift. EVV is mandatory in many regions of the United States, so integrating this will employee scheduling software creates a seamless time-tracking process.
With TimeCurve and EVV integration, manual timesheets are a thing of the past. The hours worked from the employees are automatically imported into the system, so there is no need to be manually processed. Plus, with everything automated in one centralized location, the preset process reduces mistakes from human error, making it much more reliable than the alternatives.
Have questions about how your business can use TimeCurve Software in conjunction with QuickBooks and EVV? Get started with a free trial today!
Top 5 Features Your Scheduling Software Must Have
Whether you run a grocery store, senior home care agency, a hotel chain or restaurant, employee scheduling software can streamline your business and eliminate headaches. Here are top 5 features that a well designed scheduling solution can’t be without.
1. Easy-To-Use Yet Flexible Scheduling
Well designed scheduling software will support creation of the most complex schedules, covering various scenarios such as, assigning multiple employees to the same client, splitting a shift between multiple employees, seamless support for overnight shifts to name a few. It should also offer a wide range of recurrence options so that you can create schedule manually once and let the system manage it going forward.
2. Seamless Integration With QuickBooks
Integration with bookkeeping software will allow you to fully automate the client invoicing and employee payroll. If you are creating client invoices and employee payroll manually, then your scheduling software is not doing a good job. Automating these tasks will help you eliminate errors, free up resources for other tasks and get paid faster.
3. Powerful Reporting
Ability to generate detailed reports, charts and graphs is essential for a busy office. Good scheduling software will have have options to generate, filter and sort reports in various ways. Additionally features to export reports in most common formats such as PDF and Excel files should also be offered.
4. Web-Based Solution
Online based solution has many advantages over the old PC based software. A web browser is all you need. Online-based applications don’t need any special software that then has to be installed on a computer. Simply access the cloud-based portal, and you’re ready to start scheduling. Online- or cloud-based apps are designed to accommodate multiple users. There’s no need to install the platform on multiple computers or setup complex servers. Your data is protected with encryption algorithms as well as being backed daily.
5. Integration with Electronic Visit Verification Systems
Electronic Visit Verification (EVV) enables telephone or computer-based service that electronically confirms when employees clock in or out for their shift. With EVV integration, manual timesheets are a thing of the past. The hours worked from the employees are automatically imported into the system, so there is no need to be manually processed, thereby eliminating errors and the lengthy process of reconciling time sheets with schedules.
As the name suggests, cloud-based employee scheduling relies on the cloud—an online-based, remote server—to store its applications and files. Stand-alone desktop software, on the other hand, requires downloading the files and storing them on a computer’s hardware. Both options have their place in the computing world, but in these technologically advanced times, one reigns supreme, and that’s the cloud-based alternative. Here’s why:
- A web browser is all you need. Really! That’s it. Online-based applications don’t need any special software that then has to be installed on a computer. Simply access the cloud-based portal, and you’re ready to start scheduling.
- Designed for multiple users. Online- or cloud-based apps are designed to accommodate multiple users. There’s no need to install the platform on multiple computers. Since it’s accessible with a web browser anyone can log in to the system with their personal username and password.
- Structured for remote use. Similarly, cloud-based scheduling software allows manager to access the program from home or work (or anywhere else for that matter). A stand-alone desktop application tethers its users to a specific computer, which drastically limits its flexibility and functionality.
- Increase security. TimeCurve Software uses Amazon Web Services for hosting. The cloud-based hosting platform is one of the most respected in the industry. With secured transactions, encrypted passwords and automatic data updates, business owners can work in confidence knowing that valuable and confidential data is protected.
- Reliable service. Even with low bandwidth, cloud-based computing offers a reliable and fast service, especially when using a respected platform, such as Amazon Web Services.
- Flexible and agile. Cloud-based services are easy to implement and can be quickly updated when necessary. Plus, since the cloud can be used remotely, this platform works on all operating systems including Windows and Mac.
Want to learn more about cloud-based scheduling software? Let us know!
TimeCurve Software uses cloud-based applications, as a opposed to desktop applications, for its employee scheduling software. This technology has become increasingly prevalent in the last decade, as it offers many benefits for its users. But first, let’s get acquainted with the cloud and its capabilities:
What is the Cloud?
The cloud is network of remote servers used for storing files or accessing applications. In the simplest terms, the cloud is the internet. Though not everyone is familiar with the cloud and its terminology, it’s likely that you’ve used it. If you’ve ever checked your email, used Facebook, saved a file to Dropbox, watched a movie on Netflix, listened to a song on Pandora, or accessed Google Docs, then you’ve used the cloud.
Benefits of the Cloud
Historically, files that you wanted to save required a physical piece of hardware, such as a CD or a floppy disc (remember those?). Likewise, if you wanted a new program on your computer, it required installing it via hardware. These days, desktop applications are less common as web apps (cloud-based programs) are becoming the norm. TimeCurve Software, for example, uses cloud computing to house its programming remotely. There’s no need to install the program or save important files to your computer when using the application; everything is stored remotely for easy access and improved security.
Choose a Well-Known and Respected Cloud System
When selecting web-based employee scheduling software, it’s recommended to pay attention to where the software is deployed and select the one that is deployed to a cloud system with a strong reputation. For example, Amazon Web Services is a leader in the industry and offers highest-levels of security for web based software solutions. Amazon Web Services isn’t the only game in town, but it’s important to research its features and understand how other cloud systems will integrate with your business.
Avoid a Do-It-Yourself Scenario
Whatever you do, don’t try to build your own cloud system when integrating employee scheduling software into your business. The setup is complex and requires a multitude of resources, so it’s best to go with something that’s tried and true. If something goes amiss in the development, important business files and client data could be breached. It’s not worth the risk.
Have questions about using cloud-technology for employee scheduling software? Contact TimeCurve Software or sign up for a free demo today!
Whether you run a grocery store, senior home care agency, a hotel chain or restaurant, employee scheduling software can streamline your business and eliminate headaches. TimeCurve Scheduler does just that. Designed specifically for small and mid-sized business, this software offers many features that help improve day-to-day business practices for a wide range of industries.
Here are five benefits of this easy-to-use employee scheduling software:
- Increase efficiency and productivity. Employee scheduling software is designed to reduce the time it takes to coordinate employees’ schedules. Scheduling—a tedious process that recurs about every two weeks—requires a major time investment among managers. TimeCurve Schedulers allows managers to automate scheduling, so they can focus their time and energy elsewhere.
- Reduce costs. As the old saying goes, time is money. Automating such tasks free up manpower, so resources can be redistributed toward more productive ventures.
- Forecast workload and staff. When planning ahead, it’s important to schedule enough employees for specific times. Consider the retail industry during the holidays. This hectic time of the year often requires more labor, as business can quadruple. Employee scheduling software allows you to plan for those seasonal fluctuations. Likewise, these capabilities can minimize an unproductive workplace caused by overscheduling.
- Simplify HR processes and eliminate tedious tasks. Scheduling is a repetitive task that occurs week after week. This task can be automated, so it’s completed in mere seconds. The manager only needs to approve it and it’s done.
- Manage employee needs. Not only can scheduling be tedious, but it can also get messy. For example, Employee A can only work the 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. shift and has to have off every other Saturday. Then, Employee B is a minor and can only work 22 hours a week due to minor labor laws, and Employee C needs off during the first week of February for PTO. It can be difficult to keep these needs straight and schedule appropriately to both their requirements and the fulfillment of your business needs. Such software help eliminate the confusion; the manager can pre-set recurring employee needs and episodic events, such as vacation time, so these scheduling considerations are never overlooked and always factored into the schedule.
These are only a few of the many benefits of employee scheduling software. Learn more about the benefits of TimeCurve Software and sign up for a free trial today.