How advanced scheduling can reduce employee turnover

The most significant factor in reducing turnover for hourly employees isn’t a compensation increase.  It’s advance notice of an employee’s schedule.

Homebase conducted an anonymous survey of over 100 job seekers and 100 current hourly employees.  Of those surveyed, 46% of current hourly employees and job seekers preferred a dependable schedule over earning 10% more in wages.  That means for about half of respondents predictability is more valuable than money!  

And the data shows predictability keeps employees.  Homebase looked at the number of days in advance that over 6000 small and medium sized businesses published their schedule for hourly employees and the impact it had on turnover.  When businesses published their schedule with only 1-3 days notice, turnover in a given year was averaged 42%.  But when businesses published their schedule with 8 days notice or more, turnover dropped to only 26%!  

Small business owners and managers often have objectives to publishing a schedule in advance.  They want to maintain flexibility and are worried it will create more work.  But providing an advanced schedule is easier than you think. 

A few Dos and Don’ts listed below for simplifying Employee Scheduling

Don’t let the hassle of employee requests for last-minute changes stop you from creating a schedule in advance.

Do use web-based scheduling tools, like Homebase, that allow employees to message and trade shifts with each other without having to use a manager’s time to update the schedule.  

Don’t delay creating a schedule because you can’t predict the total number of staff you will need in advance.

Do create schedules in advance for a minimum required core staff you consistently need to operate your business, if you are not covered by other scheduling regulations.  Even if you have to schedule more employees at a later time, at least some of your workforce has the benefit of advanced notice.  

Don’t guess what your labor needs might be.

Do use scheduling tools that offer the ability to forecast your labor as a percentage of sales on a daily basis, helping you better predict your workforce needs.  These tools are low-cost and even better than the programs that only Fortune 500 companies could afford just a few years ago.

Even for businesses that are not required to create schedules two weeks in advance, getting ahead of the curve and learning the skill of workforce planning can improve the quality of life and satisfaction of your hourly employees.  And ultimately, you’ll reduce turnover — saving yourself hours and headaches when it comes to recruiting and training.

The Homebase Guide to Creating a Great Team Culture

In the Homebase Guide to Creating a Great Team Culture, we cover:​

1. Introduction & Team Culture Quiz
2. Culture Fundamentals: Respect and Appreciate your Employees
3. Having a Great Culture: Improve Teamwork
4. The Cultural Holy Grail: Empowered Employees

5. Want to Reduce Turnover Among Your Employees? Try Advanced Scheduling

6. My Employees Are Fighting: How to Manage Conflict in a Small Business
7. Career Development for Hourly Employees When There is No Room for Growth

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