Many business decision makers use a form of judgment-based forecasting. They use their own subjective knowledge to set work schedules based on experience, intuition, and past behavior. While this method can prove effective in some situations, there are typically busy or slow periods that don’t align with one’s intuition and seem unpredictable.
While we’re all beaming with excitement over uncertainty and overtime in the world of sports, when it comes to your business operations, uncertainty and overtime are the last thing you want to face.
Much like a team’s performance on the playing field, success and productivity in the workforce is driven by a few foundational factors. Encouraging employees to build on their strengths and work as a team towards a common goal can be easily achieved by implementing 5 principles.
You are aware that your business has chronic periods of being short staffed. Your employees are often rushed to assist customers at hand during peak hours, and customers frequently turn impatient due to long wait times or poor service. Now what? How do you go about fixing understaffing issues in a systematic, effective way without increasing the number of employees?
Often, understaffing is not a conscious decision by management but is instead caused by an inability to predict the peaks and valleys of demand. Staffing to the average customer flow does not account for sporadic peaks in demand. Stores that have fluctuating rush periods may inadvertently become understaffed during these sudden demand peaks.
Negative employee interactions are often caused by a mismatch between the service to be rendered and the employees available to provide it. While staff members must of course be trained in positive customer interaction, even experienced staff members can leave customers with negative impressions when their skill set or capacity for workload is not adequately matched to the job requirement.
Rather than falling behind by duplicating last week’s schedule, jump ahead to the labor optimization tools that can predict tomorrow’s needs and match workforce to workload-providing certain forecasts in uncertain times.
Building on the foundation of a clear view of productivity and a robust forecast, a business can truly optimize their workforce to fit the future workload. This will allow them to minimize excess labor costs from overtime when demand is high and avoid overstaffing when demand is low.