Published: Dec 07, 2018

One of the most commonly asked questions we hear from existing customers who are interested in Workforce Dimensions is: what are the options for scheduling? Thus, the purpose of my foray into blogging for the Working Smarter Café is to present an understanding of the various scheduling packages available with Workforce Dimensions.

To gather this information and learn more, I met with Shawna Brown, Sr. Director in Product Management for Workforce Dimensions. Shawna and her team position themselves at the forefront of scheduling functionality by partnering with our customers, identifying industry trends, and analyzing the marketplace. They continuously seek to extend product capabilities with each release.


    

The Basics

Let’s start with a clarification and refresher on the basics. The Workforce Dimensions Timekeeping license comes with built-in schedule creation capabilities intended for simple schedules that have fixed shifts on a repeatable pattern. It includes similar functionality that can be found in Workforce Central Timekeeper today, meaning that the scheduling capabilities you have with your current Workforce Timekeeper solution are certainly possible if you choose Workforce Dimensions Timekeeping to address basic scheduling requirements.

For those who have more complex or demanding requirements, Workforce Dimensions customers can choose from three packages: Scheduling, Advanced Scheduling, and Optimized Scheduling. The scheduling packages available with Workforce Dimensions follow an incremental approach – with each tier providing more scheduling capabilities than the previous level.

Workforce Dimensions 101: What Scheduling Options Do I Have?

Scheduling Options

Scheduling

The first tier is Scheduling. This package provides managers with a more robust set of tools to build and maintain employee schedules. It allows managers to view their employees’ availability, manually create open shifts, assign breaks, and view employee skills and certifications in the schedule planner. It also provides employees with the ability to submit availability and swap shifts. Although the Scheduling package is a step up from the built-in scheduling capabilities included in the Workforce Dimensions Timekeeping license, it’s important to know that there are certain tasks it does not accommodate.

Managers cannot:

  • Create rule definitions and constraints, which means the inability to enforce scheduling rule violations

  • Access the staffing assistant including the embedded call list

  • See coverage graphs, advanced KPIs, or metrics that support better scheduling decisions

  • Generate schedules leveraging optimized scheduling engines

  • Access staffing tools such as the staffing dashboard, workload planner, and workload generator

 
Employees cannot:

  • Self-schedule

  • Receive schedule recommendations

  • Request an open shift

  • Request to cover

This offering may appear to be a laundry list of have-nots rather than haves; but it might be a great fit for customers who do not prioritize the advanced capabilities in the list above. Every business has its own scheduling challenges, and what is needed to resolve them depends on your specific scheduling requirements. And besides, customers can easily move to the next tier if advanced functionality becomes a must-have. That’s the beauty of the SaaS world.

Advanced Scheduling

Advanced Scheduling is the second scheduling option available in Workforce Dimensions. It’s also where we start seeing functionality that provides intelligence and rule checking. This offering allows managers to build a best-fit schedule for their employees by leveraging sophisticated algorithms that automatically account for the configured rules. In this offering, managers can balance resources across multiple departments and locations, manage coverage to effectively utilize labor, and ensure scheduling rules are followed to maintain compliance and avoid placing employees or the organization at risk.

Optimized Scheduling

The third-tier is Optimized Scheduling, which provides managers and staffing departments the tools to enhance their workforce plans and generate ideal schedules. The functionality available in Optimized Scheduling is tailored to the unique business needs for the industry in which your organization operates. It comes with all the bells and whistles! This third-tier scheduling option provides the most enhanced level of insight with a wide range of definable metrics based on your organization’s data. Also included in this offering will be our next generation forecasting solution that leverages sophisticated machine learning algorithms and our re-imagined healthcare extensions.

 

Walking away from my conversation with Shawna left me pondering the perfect analogy for the Workforce Dimensions scheduling packages…a wedding cake, the pyramid of Giza, or the Russian Matryoshka nesting doll? Then again, the purpose of this article is to explain and clarify what each offering includes, not present more information for interpretation!

Analogies aside, there’s more to Workforce Dimensions than meets the eye, and it’s all about helping managers make the right workforce decisions for their employees and their business. Please join us in the Workforce Dimensions customer group, only found in the Kronos Community, to get your questions answered and learn more. From here, you can also connect to the knowledge base for more information (logging into the Kronos Community is required to view the knowledge base article).

To find out which Workforce Dimensions Scheduling package is the right fit for your organization, managers, and employees, please reach out to your primary Kronos contact for more detailed information or to arrange a demonstration.