workforce management atoss new normal [shutterstock: 575064211,]
[shutterstock: 575064211,]
Blog Human Resources

Flexible Workforce Management For The New Normal

Society, the economy, and legislation are all changing due to current circumstances. Employee health and safety is increasingly taking center stage - also when it comes to working hours. Digital workforce management enables flexible working time arrangements in the best interest of both companies and employees.

The COVID-19 crisis has shown how important agility and mobility are around the workplace. Companies that have already digitized time recording, time management, and workforce scheduling currently have it a little easier. Workforce management software allows them to react more quickly to fluctuations in demand. Companies can also record working hours through an app if, for example, working from home is required. Information such as time credits, remaining vacation, overtime and bonuses are centrally documented and form the basis for quality- and cost-optimized staff deployment based on actual personnel requirements. With long-term working time accounts and digital processes, organizations are able to economically balance out highs and lows in order, customer, or patient volume.

Let’s take it a step further. Companies already affected by short-time work also benefit from digital workforce management. Already for the entitlement check, the employment agency consults wage-relevant documents. The required review criteria, such as shift schedules or working time accounts, are available transparently at the push of a button. If short-time work is approved, the difference to the target time must be determined. Reduced working hours and hours worked are easily retrievable. This means fast action instead of tedious applications. Workforce management software helps companies to keep business operations running as smoothly as possible while protecting the health of their employees. Modern employee integration tools, for example apps, swap meets, desired duty schedules, as well as easy-to-use self-services are beneficial in this regard.

Involve and motivate employees

Employees can submit requests, e.g. for working from home, vacation, business trips, or overtime, from anywhere at any time. By focusing on individual use cases, such as submitting a vacation request, all functions are immediately recognizable and accessible with just one click. Information required to complete their use case is available to employees at a glance. In a personal message area which is updated automatically, the system provides information about open and completed tasks via push notifications. For example, employees receive a notification if they have forgotten time bookings and need to request them retrospectively. This is also possible anywhere, anytime – whether on a business trip, in a hotel room, or from the comfort of your home.

Planning out of the cloud

If companies want to operate HR software in the cloud, all systems must be easy to integrate according to common standards. In the case of a workforce management solution, the smooth connection to cloud-based HCM systems, for example SAP SuccessFactors Employee Central, or existing ERP and payroll systems has to be ensured. Only then can the platforms be merged efficiently and without loss of productivity. Our customer Federal-Mogul plans for 2,000 employees at two German locations for its Powertrain division with cloud-based workforce management. Via the SAP Connector, Atoss workforce scheduling is connected with the time management of the company-wide SAP ERP HCM PT solution without any system-related compromises.

At the push of a button, duty rosters can be created automatically, taking into account laws, pay scales, qualifications, and time data as well as specific rules. For workstation-oriented scheduling, planners can easily assign employees directly to machines using ‘drag and drop’. At the same time, they have an overview of the required qualifications and their status at all times via a qualification matrix. For example, employees are automatically assigned to different machines if multiple qualifications require it at certain time intervals. The system proactively warns users if qualifications threaten to expire. Federal-Mogul Powertrain also relies on the innovative tool to monitor deadlines under the Employee Leasing Act and manage vacation accounts. If leave balances exceed a defined threshold on a deadline date, the tool automatically sends a notification.

New Work needs digitalization

While digitalization is advancing in many corporate processes, workforce scheduling is often lagging behind, relying on tools such as paper, planning boards, or Excel. However, digitalization, flexibility and networking are criteria that must also apply to workforce management. Modern working time concepts and digital workforce management, whether in the cloud or on premises, grant employees more freedom while enabling companies to become more agile and to achieve better quality and services at reduced cost.

E-3 Magazine December 2020/January 2021 (German)

About the author

Markus Wieser, Atoss

Markus Wieser is Executive Director Product Management at Atoss.

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