7 Workforce Management Tools You Need to Know About
Your workforce is a complicated machine to manage.
You might be struggling to stay on top of scheduling during peak times. You might have or need seasonal workers. You might need to track the skills your employees have acquired for future promotions. Maybe you are struggling to keep everyone in the communication loop, or feel like human resource needs are getting away from you. Perhaps you need to keep a close eye on timeliness and attendance trends. Your schedule is constantly in flux and your goal is to make sure that you have staff ready to handle the customer load.
Each business has its own unique workforce, and therefore, its own workforce management needs. A great workforce management tool is flexible, helping you make real time adjustments and monitor the health and trends in your workforce.
There are many workforce management tools available, but we’ve made a list of several that offer different tools to meet the needs of just about any business. We wanted to include tools that would be a fit for both small, mid-size, and large businesses.
Kintone offers a full suite of apps that are customizable to fit your business. Combining both HR and employee management, this cloud-based app is accessible wherever you are.
The customization factor is one of the features that makes Kintone unique. If you’ve been using spreadsheets to manage workforce data, you can import them into Kintone and create custom apps from the data. It’s basically you turning your dead data into live data. Kintone offers recruitment tools, customized reminders, performance rating, and more, selling itself as helping you “switch hats” quickly suggesting that what used to be done by multiple people or apps can now be managed by one.
Datis is a tool that melds human resources smoothly with other workforce management considerations. If your business has multiple departments, Datis helps connect them all together and give an overall picture so that you avoid creating silos of disconnected employees. Datis essentially manages your workforce from recruiting on through the entire employee lifecycle.
Datis offers tools for top level management, human resources, and operations. This makes it an ideal solution for larger businesses whose employees aren’t necessarily hourly. As with many of the apps listed here, Datis also integrates with your payroll, which is a crucial part of workforce management.
Retain Resource Planning is perfect for the manager who is trying to match employees with the tasks and job they are best suited for. It has tools that keep tabs on areas where your business has a skills shortage, which helps you plan for employee training. Retain Resource Planning is good for projecting where your workforce is headed and what gaps need plugging. It also offers a variety of reports that help you analyze the data the app is gathering.
Retain Resource Planning is a great choice for businesses whose workforce requires tracking of skills and maintaining a particular level of skilled employees.
When I Work
Like any good workforce management tool, When I Work makes it easy to maintain proper staffing levels. A key component of this is the ability for your entire team—including among managers—to communicate easily, which When I Work excels at. From in-app messaging to texting, as well as a mobile app that makes it easy for employees to quickly see the work schedule and changes or discussion, When I Work negates any chance for the excuse of “I didn’t know I was supposed to work.”
Integration with other apps that your employees are already using (e.g. Google Calendar and Outlook) help your employees spot conflicts between work schedule and personal schedules. That, combined with an intuitive user interface, makes this the perfect tool for those who are new to workforce management tools as well as those who are looking for less fuss.
Float is an a tool that mixes workforce management with project management. It is ideal for businesses that need to not just schedule employees, but also manage multiple projects, contractors, and other peripheral aspects of project completion.
Instead of simply scheduling shifts, Float helps in project management as far as what tasks and aspects of a project a team member is to be working on (and when). It is, essentially, a “visual team planner” that lets you see, at a glance, who is working on what part of a project. Combining that project management with standard scheduling allows Float to generate reports that show holidays, sick leave, project progression, and time off both on an overall and individual level. Custom schedules are available for each team member to view.
Float offers varied access, based on the role of the employee. It also allows roles to be created for team members who haven’t yet been hired.
Zenefits is ideal for larger businesses with greater workforce management needs. It has many features, including scheduling, payroll, human resources, compliance issues, benefits management, and communication. While it might be overkill for a smaller business, larger businesses will find that Zenefits is a kind of umbrella app that covers a lot of bases that might otherwise take several different apps.
Zenefits integrates with a variety of other apps and services (e.g. Google, Slack) that many businesses already use, making communication with your workforce easy.
Namely is similar to Zenefits in that it is a solution for larger businesses. It bills itself more as HR software, but includes payroll and benefits management in it. Time management is also included, as is the onboarding of new employees.
Namely gathers data across its entire system so that each employee can be viewed on an individual level as far as compensation, performance reviews, time, project teams, and other information.
While much of this is more geared for HR, Namely provides useful data for large businesses that struggle to manage and track employees on that important individual level.
Sentric Workforce offers different modules so that you can build the workforce management tool that you need without paying for something you don’t. This includes payroll, recruitment, human resources, time tracking, onboarding and attendance. Sentric allows you to customize the interface with your business logo so that it feels like an integrated part of your company system.
One of the unique aspects of Sentric, in the realm of the larger workforce management tools in which it occupies, is that employees have a level of self-management (e.g. they can use the tool to request time off).
Ultimately, the best tool you’ll choose is the tool you’ll actually use. Take time to think about what it is you actually need for your business. What areas seem to be a constant source of headache and struggle for you, from a management stance? What kind of data or information do you find yourself wishing you could see at a glance? Are you growing to the point where you need some basic human resource tools but not ready for a full human resource department? Are you able to handle a complicated tool, or just want the beauty of a simple tool? Each of the workforce management tools listed here are the perfect tool for someone, so take time to evaluate what you need when it comes to workforce management.