Softworks Blog

Juggling the Work/Life Balance with Flexitime

Posted by Oliver Mitchell on Thu, Aug 31, 2017

The now famous 30 second speech given by the former CEO of Coca Cola Bryan Dyson (86-91), identified work as one of five components of life. It went along the lines of:

"Imagine life as a game in which you are juggling five balls in the air.  You name them - Work, Family, Health. Friends and Spirit - and you're keeping all of these in the air. You'll soon understand that work is a rubber ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back. But the other four balls- Family,Health,Friends and Spirit -  are made of glass. If you drop one of these, they will be irrevocably scuffed,marked,nicked, damaged or even shattered. They will never be the same. You must understand that and strive for it. Work efficiently during the office hours and leave on time. Give the required time to your family, friends and have proper rest. Value has a value only if it's value is valued."

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Life today is very different from the 1980's. Technology has made the world a much smaller place. Communicaton methods are constantly evolving and a vast amount of people post their every movement and interaction on some form of social media to share with the world. But that in itself is a whole other conversation!

Work is also a much more fluid environment nowadays. My colleagues are spread over 4 different time zones , with customers and suppliers in numerous others. But with the range of devices now available we are practically contactable 24/7 almost anywhere in the world.  So I ask the question: "Are we truly ever off the clock?" 

Don't get me wrong, I think it's amazing that we can be at home, out for a walk, having dinner with friends or doing any number of things and can solve an issue or respond to a question from someone who needs an answer during their working day, and vice versa. Without a doubt this makes the work flow quicker and easier, but it also blurs the lines of what Bryan Dyson was trying to get across. In his speech, there is seemingly a clear divide between the 5 elements we're all  constantly struggling to juggle. In today's reality, they all intermingle, blend together and managing your time ensuring each one is kept in the air is one of modern life's biggest challenges. 

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Using Flexitime within your organisation can assist employee's with managing this quandary. Having freedom to choose your start and end time to your office day can help you to deal with the other things that life throws at you from time to time. From the employers point of view, knowing that your employee is monitoring their hours to ensure they work the contracted amount of time over a week or month gives you some peace of mind too. It doesn't neccessarily cover the extra little segments of time that get spent on those late night emails or phone calls but it does offer more balance than the traditional office hours.  

In essence, having flexibility around the demands of work enables a person to better juggle all the balls they have in the air at any given time and that, I believe, encapsulates the message that Bryan Dyson was conveying in his 30 second speech. 

Topics: Time & Attendance, Flexitime / Flexible Working Hours Arrangement, Flexible Working, Workforce Management

The Benefits of a Mobile Workforce Management Solution

Posted by Jimmy English on Mon, Aug 21, 2017

In a workforce that is becoming increasingly flexible, more and more employees have the option to work from home or from the road. These employees still need to be able to clock in and clock out, request holidays and  manage their Time and Attendance. In companies where employees enjoy benefits such as flexible working, they must have access to a mobile online workforce management system. Mobile Workorce Management provides a number of benefits to both employees and managers.

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Here are some of the key benefits of mobile workforce management solutions:

  1. Manage Time and Attendance from the comfort of your phone.

Managers who utilise a Mobile Workforce Management Solution can view and manage their employee Time and Attendance on the move and complete tasks such as reviewing Holiday Requests and adjusting Rosters.

  1. Clock In/Out Remotely.

For employees who work remotely, work flexible hours,  or who are often on the road for work recording hours worked can pose quite a challenge. These employees cannot physically clock in in their office, and must rely on other means to record when they start and end their shift.A mobile Time & Attendance App solves this problem, allowing employees to clock in and out from their phone.

  1. Save time and money

By placing a mobile Human Resources tool in the hands of your employee you are enabling them to access real time human resources information, thus eliminating the number of enquiries your HR department must deal with.

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The Softworks App is one of the most effective and user friendly Workforce Management Apps available. When Softworks Employee Self service App, employees can view their clocking history, request leave and check rosters. The Softworks Mobile Workforce Management App is highly user centric and intuitive and is quickly being adopted as the industry standard in Mobile Workforce Management.

For more information on our Mobile Workforce App and to see it in action for yourself, Request a Demo here today.

Book a Demo

 

Topics: Time & Attendance, Flexible Working, Workforce Management, Mobile App

New Customer Announcement - CDP Worldwide

Posted by Jimmy English on Thu, Aug 10, 2017

Softworks UK wins contract to provide CDP Worldwide with Market Leading Workforce Management Solutions

Softworks UK has won the contract to provide the Carbon Disclosure Project with eRostering, Absence Management and Time & Attendance Solutions. CDP Worldwide, Headquartered in London will use Softworks Time & Attendance Solutions for 140 staff across 6 departments.

Following a search process, Softworks was awarded the contract to provide their solution against competition from within the United Kingdom. Softworks Solutions are already used by many other not for profit companies including: Radius Housing, Focus Ireland, Cork Association for Autism, Blind Veterans UK and the Lauralynn Childrens Home to name but a few.

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CDP Worldwide particularly liked Softworks eRostering solutions which allows employees to check shifts with simplicity and ease. CDP is planning to expand the implementation of Softworks to its wider European operations in the future.

Andrew Ferguson, Softworks CEO, said: “We are delighted to be working with CDP Worldwide and look forward to seeing them benefit from our Workforce Management Solutions.”

 

Topics: Time & Attendance, Compliance, Workforce Management, Automated Absence Management, Mobile App, Timesheets, Employee Motivation

New Customer Announcement - Softworks wins Halifax International Airport contract to provide Time & Attendance Solutions. 

Posted by Jimmy English on Fri, Jul 21, 2017

Softworks has won the tender to provide their market leading Time & Attendance, Scheduling and Absence Management solutions to Halifax International Airport in Halifax, Nova Scotia. (Canada)

Softworks will provide Halifax International Airport with workforce management solutions for over 200 employees.

Following the tendering process, Softworks was awarded the contract to provide their solutions against competition from within Canada and the US. Softworks Solutions are already used by other transport agencies including: Dublin Airport Authority, Shannon Airport and Dublin Bus, to name but a few.

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Halifax International Airport particularly liked Softworks Employee Self Service solutions which allows employees to record their own time & attendance, check work schedules and even to book absences and holidays, all via their mobile app. One of the most attractive features of Softworks Employee Self Service is that it increases the efficiency of Human Resources, Payroll and Operations staff by reducing the number of queries coming from employees.

Andrew Ferguson, CEO of Softworks, said: “We are delighted to have been awarded this tender and we look forward to working closely with the team at Halifax Airport as they reap the benefits of our Workforce Management Solutions. “

Topics: Time & Attendance, Compliance, Workforce Management, Automated Absence Management, Mobile App, Timesheets, Employee Motivation

The Top 5 Challenges of Workforce Management

Posted by Jimmy English on Tue, Jul 18, 2017

Workforce management refers to the system of processes involved in the daily organisation and operation of employees in a working environment. In any organisation that has multiple departments with multiple employees there is going to be a certain amount of difficulty and complexity in the management of these employees. Some of most common challenges in workforce management include:Scheduling and rostering, Time & Attendance Tracking, Managing Absences and employee self-service options.

Let’s take a further look at these workforce management challenges:

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  1. Time & Attendance Tracking.

The main issues surrounding tracking employee time and attendance in any organisation typically result from the tracking being paper based, with employees manually signing in and out. Paper based time and attendance tracking is very open to innacuracies and dishonesty from employees.

  1. Scheduling and Rostering

Within any company there can be several different shift patterns requiring employees to be scheduled for different parts of the day. Staff levels can also be dependent on projected demand during busy or quiet periods. Paper based rostering is becoming increasingly inefficient in the modern workplace.

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  1. Managing Absences.

Planned and unplanned absences can both test a business. Unplanned absences can place unnceccesary strain on business due to the extra costs of covering the absence and the losses incurred while the absent employee is being replaced. Planned absences are simpler to deal with but will still present obstacles for a company.

  1. Employee self service

The increasing demand from employees for access to their time & attendance information and data is presenting a challenge for employers who still store this data in paper format. The requirement for transparency around employee data is difficult to comply with for employers who do not have this information stored digitally.

  5. Holiday Tracking

 Chances are, employees are going to want to take annual leave during the summer months when the weather is fine. Demand for time off mid year is going to be very high. Unfortunatley it will not be possible to accomodate everyone's holiday requests for the same time and it is often neccessary to stagger these requests to ensure that the company still functions fully.

 

To successfully compete in the modern business environment it is vital that companies implement a workforce management system to help them to manage and optimise employee output and performance. Workforce management solutions such as those provided by Softworks can assist companies to drive efficiency, reduce costs and ultimately improve business performance.

But don't just take our word for it! Book a live Demo here and see for yourself!

Book a Demo

Topics: Time & Attendance, Compliance, Healthcare, Workforce Management, Automated Absence Management, Timesheets

Softworks awarded contract to provide Workforce Management Solutions to Havencare (Southwest) Ltd

Posted by Jimmy English on Fri, Jul 14, 2017

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Softworks has been awarded the contract to provide their market leading Time & Attendance,eRostering and Absence Management Solutions to Havencare Supported Living and Residential Care in Plymouth, United Kingdom. Softworks will provide Havencare with workforce management solutions for their 220 employees across several facilities.

Softworks Solutions are already used by many other healthcare and assisted living facilities across the UK and Ireland including Newbrook Nursing Home, The Bons Secours Health System, University Hospitals of Bristol NHS Trust and the Fermoy Community Hospital to name but a few.

Havencare particularly liked Softworks Employee Self Service Solutions which allow employees to record their own time & attendance, check work schedules and even to book absences and holidays, all via their mobile app. One of the most attractive features of Softworks Employee Self Service is that it increases the efficiency of Human Resources, Payroll and Operations staff by reducing the number of queries coming from employees.

Softworks are looking forward to working closely with the team at Havencare as they reap the benefits of our Workforce Management Solutions.

Find out more about our workforce management solutions. 

Try Softworks for yourself and get a Live Demo of our market leading solutions. 

Book a Demo

 

 

Topics: Time & Attendance, Healthcare, Workforce Management, Automated Absence Management, Mobile App

The benefits of introducing a Workforce Management System in the Healthcare Industry.

Posted by Jimmy English on Mon, Jul 10, 2017

In the fast paced and often hectic environment of hospitals and other healthcare services it is vital that the right staff are assigned to the right department, at the right time, to perform the right task. The effective management of a hospital centres on accuracy and efficiency.  To ensure the smooth running of their hospitals, more and more managers are turning towards workforce management solutions for the healthcare industry.

Common issues facing healthcare managers include:

Compliance: Healthcare providers need a tool that ensures all staff are rostered within working time regulations.

Patient safety: if key staff are tired and overworked, the safety of their patients could be at risk. Healthcare providers need to ensure their medical staff receive sufficient rest breaks.

Accuracy: healthcare providers need to ensure the accurate collection of employee hours worked for payroll.

Automation: Automation and pre scheduled hours allows healthcare and hospital managers to easily manage employee hours and meet staffing demands. 

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As well as addressing many of these common workforce management issues, time & attendance and eRostering solutions can provide a clear return on investment for healthcare providers.  Scheduling and time & attendance solutions give the healthcare sector the tools and systems they need to operate under strict budgeting guidelines, the high cost of labour and variable staffing needs.

Some of the benefits of Time & Attendance and eRostering Solutions that will yield ROI for healthcare providers include:

Optimising the workforce by aligning staff levels and labour resources and ensuring staff have the required skillset to carry out the task at hand.

Improving productivity by providing real time staff information for informed decisions.

Attracting, retaining and motivating employees by giving them more control and input over their work schedules.

As the leading supplier  of Time & Attendance and eRostering solutions to the healthcare sector in Ireland and the UK,Softworks understands the complex issues that healthcare providers face.

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You can find out more about the benefits of workforce management in the healthcare industry by downloading our Free whitepaper here.

For a look at a real life application of softworks solutions in one of Irelands largest hospitals, download our case study here.

But don't just take our word for it. See for yourself how Softworks Workforce Management Solutions can benefit your Healthcare establishment and book a Live Demonstration. 

Book a Demo

Topics: Time & Attendance, Compliance, Healthcare, Workforce Management, Automated Absence Management, Timesheets

The Cause and Cost of Absenteeism

Posted by Jimmy English on Mon, Jul 3, 2017

The Causes and Costs of Absenteeism in the Workplace

What Causes Absenteeism and how does it affect a company?

 Absenteeism is one of the biggest and most persistent obstacles to productivity and profit in a company. There are a number of factors that cause employees to be absent from work. Sickness, family problems and lack of motivation are all responsible for causing employees to be absent from work. Repeated and unplanned absences over an extended period of time can eventually begin to adversely affect a company’s overall performance.

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Below are two of the most common causes of unplanned employee absences:

  1. Disengagement: Employees who are not committed to their role or are not satisfied are more likely to miss time. They have less motivation to go to work and therefore are at a higher risk of taking unplanned absences.

 2.  Lack of work life balance: It is hugely important that employees have a good relationship between their work life and personal life. Employees who are over worked are more likely to take unplanned and unscheduled absences to maintain some balance in their lives.

 Employees who engage in unplanned absenteeism are putting an increased cost on their employer.

Some of the main costs of absenteeism include:

- The high cost of replacement employees, 

- The administrative cost of managing absence and a poorer service provided to customers due to shortage of labour.

- Absenteeism causes overtime, late deliveries and dissatisfied customers. Furthermore, employee morale is affected as other employees are expected to compensate for their absent co-worker.

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In the United Kingdom, absenteeism is costing businesses billions each year. The average employee in the UK take 10 unplanned absences every year.

What steps can employers take to minimise the negative effect of unplanned absences?

Ultimately, companies need  to implement a workforce management system to track and analyse employee absence behaviour. By identifying and understanding patterns of absence companies can take the necessary steps to reduce both the financial and indirect costs of abseentism.

Find out more about reducing absenteeism in the workplace and download our dedicated whitepaper here.

Softworks can help your company to achieve it’s absence management and attendance tracking goals. Get in touch with us here for a Demo of our Workforce Management Solutions.

Request a Live Demo

 

Topics: Time & Attendance, Compliance, Workforce Management, Automated Absence Management, Timesheets

Have a more productive Monday with Softworks

Posted by Jimmy English on Mon, Jun 26, 2017

4 tips for a more productive Monday with Softworks

We all know Mondays can be tough. You were at the beach, at the pub or at the much. Then before you know it the weekend is over and you’re back at your desk. Where did the weekend go?  It’s time to refocus for the week and get stuck into your work. Unfortunately, this is easier said than done.. No need to fear though, because we have for you 4 tips that will assist you to be more productive this Monday!

  1. Turn off your phone.

I’ll be the first to put my hand up and say I’m on my phone way too much. Ireland as an employment environment is increasingly populated by young professionals with smartphones. For some, the temptation to update social media with the weekend’s antics during the work day is just too much. Switch your phone off, even for a few hours and you’ll find that your work rate and concentration doubles.

 2. Log out of social media on your laptop.

There’s not much point in turning off your phone if you’re just going to go on Facebook on your computer. Monday is the perfect opportunity for a social media detox. And we’re sure your boss wouldn’t be too happy to see you on Facebook instead of working. Unless your job specifically requires it, you should definitely limit your social media usage during work hours.

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  1. Make a list of tasks.

This productivity trick is helpful on any day of the week, particularly on a Monday. A list of jobs for the day will help to focus your attention and manage your time effectively.

  1. Hydrate and caffeinate.

Rough weekend? We’re all getting older and there’s nothing worse than sitting at work and still be feeling the effects of Saturday night.  Dehydration reduces brain function and concentration, so it’s always good to have a bottle of water handy and sip away.

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Mondays are bad enough so do whatever you can to readjust after the weekend and get your week off to a good start. 

Softworks are the market leading providers of workforce management solutions. Our services aid companies to effectively manage their employees time, attendance and scheduling, allowing them to focus on increasing productivity and reducing costs. Sound like something your company needs? Get in touch with us here for a Live Demonstration of our solutions.

Request a Live Demo

Topics: Time & Attendance, Compliance, Workforce Management, Automated Absence Management, Timesheets

The Benefits of Time & Attendance Automation

Posted by Jimmy English on Mon, Jun 19, 2017

In the rapidly progressing and fast paced business landscape it is vitally important that businesses adopt modern trends in order to maintain their competitive edge. One such trend is that Employee Time & Attendance and Scheduling is increasingly becoming automated. But are there benefits to automating these processes?

Accuracy

The main benefit of automated time and attendance lies in the reduction of the inaccuracies associated with manually clocking in and out. Incomparable accuracy compared with manual recording of time.  Automated time and attendance systems stamp out employee time theft by removing the approximate nature of manually clocking out or signing out.  By eliminating this particular drawback of manual clocking, companies can begin to save on overpaying their employees. Automated attendance tracking also provides an incomparable level of accuracy to manual attendance.

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Productivity

By clocking in at the start of the working day, employees enter the work mind-set and are more likely to be productive. This mental “switching into work mode” will boost employee productivity. Similarly, employees are less likely to slack off if they know that their time and attendance is being tracked.

Shift scheduling

The use of an automated workforce management system allows for greater flexibility in the creation and assignment of shifts. With an automated employee scheduling system, staff levels can be allocated to meet the demands and needs of the business. For example, in a manufacturing company more staff can be rostered to meet production demands. A hotel or restaurant can utilise their automated time and attendance system to forecast their required staff levels for anticipated busy periods.

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Compliance

It is vital that your company maintains compliance with employee working time legislation. With and automated time and attendance solution you can ensure that your employees do not work any more hours than they are legally permitted to. All employee time and attendance data is stored and is easily accessed if it is ever called into question.

With Softworks, we take the hassle out of tracking and scheduling your employees. Our time and attendance solution is one of the most powerful available on the market. But don’t just take our word for it. Try Softworks for yourself!

Get in touch with us here for a Live Demo of our Time and Attendance Solution.

Request Live Demo

Topics: Time & Attendance, Compliance, Workforce Management, Automated Absence Management, Timesheets