Workforce Management Capabilities, Requirements and Features Checklist

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For many industries, unpredictable scheduling is the standard. Retail workers, food service employees, on-call tech assistants and more are used to varying work schedules. This inconsistency is starting to spill into the 9-to-5 sector too, as overtime, remote work and travel become more common. Because of this, workforce management is a critical function for modern businesses. It may seem simple, but creating a schedule so employees know when and where they are working is important. Of course, workforce management software capabilities and requirements go beyond standard scheduling features. The best workforce management features facilitate a wide variety of HR tasks. This article details the ins and outs of solutions and explores tips for how to select one that will suit your company’s’ needs.

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WFM Software Features Checklist

What Is Workforce Management Software?

At its core, workforce management focuses on all of the tasks that are involved with making sure a workforce functions like a well-oiled machine. Its main goal is to guarantee that your business always has enough human capital to function, both at the present and in the future. This involves assessing many moving parts and can be tricky to do without the proper tools. That’s why workforce management products are becoming increasingly popular.

With the right workforce management software features, it’s easy to assess your long-term business goals and make sure your team is fully prepared to reach them. These functionalities have become even more important as more businesses allow employees to work remotely, either full time or on a flex schedule.

The Transition to the Mobile Workforce

While remote work offers countless benefits, it can present new challenges as well. With employees working from various locations and less face-to-face interactions with managers and coworkers, the mobile workforce can be tricky to manage. However, with a robust workforce management system, managers can gain insight into what’s going on with each employee through one convenient platform.

It all sounds pretty great, but is it really what your business needs? And if it is, how do you know where to start your search? The best place to start is to turn your focus inward and assess exactly what it is you need this software to do.

How to Begin Your Search for Workforce Management Software

The realm of HR software offers countless solutions for a variety of needs. Some, like payroll software or a learning management solution, focus on one HR task and might have additional features that meet one or two other needs. Other solutions, like an HRIS, will provide modules to meet all of your HR needs. Workforce management solutions fall somewhere in between these two categorizations.

Before you begin your search, it’s best to identify your internal pain points and determine if workforce management software features will be able to address those needs or if you’re better off with a different type of product.

Below, we’ve listed some of the most popular workforce management capabilities. You can start by reviewing the list below and assessing how these features can help improve your business practices. The features that you prioritize will become a requirements guide you can use when comparing the vendors that make it onto your shortlist.

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Most Important Workforce Management Features

Scheduling

Scheduling is a core workforce management software feature. Basic schedule building is part of this, but one benefit of using this feature is gaining insight into your business to create the best schedule possible.

Infor

Infor Workforce Management’s schedule dashboard.

Workforce management software examines past data on performance and other factors to determine current staffing needs. This automated feature takes the guesswork out of scheduling, with tools for calculating the number of employees needed for a certain project or potential staffing gaps.

  • Schedule Optimization
  • Define Positions and Departments
  • Multisite Support
  • Automatic Scheduling

Forecasting

Forecasting functions predict future possibilities based on historical data, trends and the direction of the business. Trend analysis functionality examines patterns in employee time and attendance, guiding decision making when creating schedules or new policies. For example, managers can use forecasting to schedule employees for a specific project or especially busy time of year based on performance from past seasons. Many systems allow users to introduce different factors into scenarios, so needs can be observed from all angles.

  • History-Based Forecasting
  • User-Controlled Forecasting Engine
  • Predictive Algorithms

Performance Management

Performance management features track the achievements of the organization as a whole, as well as individual employees. This analysis provides insight into company procedures and predicts trends. Performance management features can tie into workforce management through the observation of employee conduct in certain roles, locations and work times. With this information, managers can schedule workers accordingly.

  • Performance Evaluation
  • KPI Tracking
  • Workforce Analysis

Reporting

Reporting through workforce management software gives users a tool for presenting data in informative visualizations. By compiling information into a report format, data is easy to interpret and shareable. The accessibility of data through a report allows all stakeholders to view the resources they need, regardless of technical ability or analytics experience.

  • Third-Party Data Extraction
  • Time Sheets
  • Vacation Planning Reports
  • Payroll Reports
  • Scheduling Reports
  • Custom Reports

Workforce Mobility

With mobile work becoming more popular, this is one of the more in demand workforce management capabilities. It can be vital to organizations that find their workforce is no longer tied to a desk.

Workforce Mobility

ADP Workforce Now’s deployment allows users to access the platform from their desktop or their mobile device.

Mobile capabilities give users the tools to access their workforce management platform from any device. Employees can use the software when traveling to other offices, working during their commute or in any situation where a desktop computer isn’t accessible. This feature is especially useful for businesses with constantly changing schedules, such as a restaurant or customer service center where employees swap shifts often. A mobile workforce management system alerts all employees to these changes, keeping the company on top of scheduling and avoiding any lapses in coverage due to lack of awareness.

  • iOS Compatibility
  • Android Compatibility
  • Cloud Computing

Time Tracking

Time tracking features provide attendance tools, such as clocking in and out and monitoring. More advanced features, like biometrics and compliance measures, ensure added security to these standard systems. The collection of attendance information through time tracking tools gives business owners an accurate portrait of employee hours. With the insights provided by the analysis of this data, decision-makers can craft workforce management policy to fit the needs of their company.

  • Attendance Tracking
  • Time Clock Options
  • Biometrics
  • Compliance

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Labor Budgeting

Simulated scenario forecasting helps users view possible metrics and make adjustments to the scenarios based on different variables. By exploring these “what-ifs,” decision-makers can plan for any circumstance.

  • What-If Scenario Planning
  • Reports
  • Trend Analysis

Tracking and Management

Self-service capabilities provide access to payroll, benefits and attendance-related materials for all employees. Tracking and management features essentially allow users to view their own workforce management information and complete any action needed, without the assistance of their company’s human resource department. Databases present this information and provide a space for employees to view and work with the items.

  • Employee Self-Service
  • Payroll Database
  • Benefits Database
  • Attendance Database

Integrations

Workforce management software can integrate with other human resource systems, offering a complete suite of functionality. Connecting with third-party platforms keeps all of your business’s human resource functionality connected. A workforce management system can be integrated with an HRM system as an add-on, or other types of software can be linked to an initially standalone workforce management tool.

  • HRM Integration
  • Time and Attendance Software Integration
  • Payroll Software Integration

Administrative Control

Administrative control features give managers the ability to define rules centered around compensation and attendance policies. The system includes automatic, accurate calculations of financial factors – users can ensure all information is correct with certainty.

  • Pay Rules
  • Overtime Rules
  • Onsite Training
  • Multistate and Reciprocity Calculation
  • Geography-Based Tax Calculation

Deployment Flexibility

Most workforce management systems offer deployment options that can be chosen depending on the needs of your business. Cloud-based systems host the platform online, providing mobile access and extensive data storage. On-premise platforms keep files stored in company devices.

  • Hosted
  • Cloud-Based Deployment
  • On-Premise Deployment

Security

Security measures included in workforce management software control accessibility based on employee roles. This feature ensures information is available only to necessary stakeholders, keeping employee data protected. Audit trails keep track of any adjustments within the platform, so there is a record of all activity. With this security tool, businesses have documentation of their workforce management software processes. In the case of any errors occurring, users can review the audit trail to discover the source of the issue. This allows companies to respond to problems quickly.

  • Access Control
  • Audit Trail
  • Biometrics

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Conclusion

At its core, workforce management software facilitates the tasks that allow business to be successful. The base functionality of these platforms involves scheduling and planning, as well as resulting attendance tracking. Workforce management software features that facilitate performance management provide insight into which employees are top performers as well as what skills your workforce is missing. Advanced analytics tools examine trends and offer insight, leading to informed decision making. Additional features like security and deployment ensure the system runs smoothly.

When implementing a workforce management system, it is important to determine the needs of your business, as well as examine your current environment. This is especially true for companies with an existing human resource management system in place. There are many HRM platforms that include workforce management functionality, so gaining an in-depth understanding of where you stand in terms of established processes is the first step to choosing your requirements.

What are the top workforce management software requirements for your business and why were these the most important to you? Leave a comment and let us know!

Alainia ConradWorkforce Management Capabilities, Requirements and Features Checklist

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Join the conversation
  • queuedr - May 30, 2019 reply

    hi there thanks for the information and posts

  • Recruitzi - July 15, 2019 reply

    i read your blog its very useful and effective

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