The schedule creation tool allows you to easily plan and populate shifts using your staff availability and skills to meet your staffing requirements.
Templates contain the times, skills and tasks that you need for that template. They can also contain named individuals or unassigned shifts but the majority of the templates will be for shifts that the schedule creation tool will assign to staff members.
Once you have a template, you use the schedule creation tool to plot your templates onto the calendar. You can repeat templates as many times as you need and you can combine different templates on the same day. For example, you might have a weekday template which is the same every weekday and then also have a Friday afternoon template that you add just on Fridays to give you some extra staff. Both the weekday template and the Friday template will be combined when scheduling that day.
Once this is all scheduled then you will preview the shifts. The system will then attempt to fill your entire schedule with staff based on their skills and availability. You are able to see the shifts and review the template at this stage. If you are happy with the plan then you can convert the preview shifts into real shifts that you can then edit as normal.
You can re-generate the preview shifts as many times as needed and each time might generate different results.
(If you have created your template you can use the template previously to create a schedule. See our page on 'Shift Schedule Creation - Managing Schedules' for more help on this.)
You can create templates for shifts to save time when scheduling your staff members.
Creating New Templates
To create a new template, click the “Actions” button in the right corner of the menu then select “Create Template”.
There are various options:
- Template Title - What the template will be called.
- Category - This allows you to group the templates together and only view that category.
- Venue Specific - Templates can either be a single venue (e.g. the shifts are created in the venue that the template is added to) or they can be multi-venue (e.g. you choose in the template where the shifts will be worked).
- Template Owner - Where the template should sit for administration purposes.
- Share Template with other Venues - Can other venues use your template in their schedules (useful for single venue templates).
- Quick Add - Choose some of your most common templates that you can then quickly click and add to the schedule directly.
The template will be added to the list. You can either keep the template just for your current venue or allow the template to be shared to other venues.
Creating New Templates from Shifts
Rather than creating a new template from scratch, you can select to create a template from an existing shift.
Click the “Actions” button in the right corner of the menu, then select “Create Template from Shifts”.
This shows you a popup that allows you to provide the new template with a name and to select the shift that you would like to convert (to select, click the “Convert” button). You are also able to choose whether you require the staff roles or the exact staff to be imported into the new template.
If you click “Convert” before you give the template a name, it will still be added to the list under the name “(untitled)”. Clicking the pencil icon on the template list will allow you to edit the name of the template.
Managing the Template
To manage your new template, or to adjust an existing template, click “Manage”.
- Populate shifts from role - Select whether you want to place “Certain Staff” into the shift or staff who are members of a particular team. “Certain Staff” allows you to select specific staff members to add to the schedule. If you select “Members of …” then those added will be those who have this as their default role.
- Role for shift - Specify which role you are wanting to fill for the shifts.
- Staff - This will only show if “Certain Staff” have been selected from the “Place Type” dropdown. Here you can select the staff members that you require for the shift.
- Task - Specify which task you want to be undertaken during the shift.
- Number of Spaces - This will only show if “Members of …” has been selected from the “Place Type” dropdown. Select the number of spaces that you want to create from that member list.
- Role - Determine the role that you want to create the space for.
- Start/End Times - Select the shift times.
- Task - Select the appropriate task that needs to be completed during the shift by that role.
- Fill Options - Determine how that role is to be assigned. Equal shift spread is the most common as this will try to provide all staff with an equal number of shifts.
Once you’re happy with the information, click “Add to Template”. This will then add the information to the bottom of the template.
Keep going until you have completed your template as needed. Within the template table, you will see the details of the shifts as you have added them:
- Staff Member/Fill From Role - Where should the staff come from to fill this requirement. This might also state extra shifts, unassigned shifts or offered shifts; these all mean they will not be populated with specific people)
- Shift Role - The role that the shift will be.
- Venue (if a multi-venue template) - Where the shift should be worked. If this is not shown or it’s set to [schedule venue] then this is where the template has been added to the scheduler.
- Task - Shift task (if assigned). You can edit this using the select boxes on the right and the bulk update options below the table.
- D.R. - Default Role Only. When enabled (which is the default) then only staff who have the ‘fill from role’ as their default role will be used. This means that supervisors who might have both the supervisor role and non-supervisor role will not be placed into the non-supervisor role.You also have the option to prioritise the staff who are available with the role as their default but if you run out then use any available staff who can work in that role.
- Split - Enabling this option will tell the system to fill the requirement with multiple people based on the shift splitting rules (under your Venue Settings) and who is available to work. It allows for a long requirement to be entered and the system allocates them between different staff.
- Fill Method - Determine how that role is to be assigned. Equal shift spread is the most common as this will try to provide all staff with an equal number of shifts.
- Equal Shift Spread - This will look at the number of hours working for the last few weeks and into the future. The system will then try to allocate the same amount of hours to all staff. This is the most common and most useful method.
- Random - This will use a completely random order to choose who should work each shift. This will not provide any equal allocation or fair schedules. It’s suitable to add an element of randomness into a schedule that is very repetitive. In these cases, use it on one or two rows of a template to add the random element.
- Least Upcoming Shifts - The staff who have the least shifts scheduled in the future will be assigned first. This won’t look at the number of hours, just the number of shifts.
- Most Shifts Worked - The staff who have completed the fewest shifts over the last few weeks will be assigned first.
- Least Shifts Worked - The staff who have completed the fewest shifts over the last few weeks will be assigned first.
- String of Similar Shifts - This will prioritise the staff who worked the same shift (role and times) the previous day. This is intended to help staff have a series of shifts at the same time before changing; e.g. a string of 4 nights before changing back to days. This should be used along with a Contract Restriction to prevent too many shifts being worked in a row.
- Prioritise Shifts Working the Same Day - This option will prioritise giving the same staff additional shifts on the same day. This is so that staff who are already working and would prefer to continue working that day would be given priority if allowed rather than splitting it between multiple people.
- Balance Fair Schedule with Travel Distance
- Shortest Travel
- Keep Colleagues Together and then Balance Fair Schedule with Travel Distance
- Keep Colleagues Together and then Shortest Travel
- Keep Colleagues Together and then Equal Shift Spread
- Alphabetical (A-Z) - Work down the list of staff alphabetically.
- Alphabetical (Z-A) - Work up the list of staff alphabetically.
- Alphabetical Alt. (A-Z) - Work down the list alphabetically, skip every other staff member. Then return and go through all of the skipped staff members. This is useful to mix teams up who often use the Alphabetical option.
- Alphabetical Alt. (Z-A) - Work up the list alphabetically, skip every other staff member. Then return and go through all of the skipped staff members.
- Linked Shifts - The chain icon allows you to add a linked shift. Linked shifts must always be worked by the same staff member so it keeps them together throughout the scheduling process and any future shift swapping/transfers. Read more aboutLinked Shifts.
To make any changes to the existing schedule, check the checkbox in the row of the staff member or role that you would like to change and use the box at the bottom to adjust the start and end times, roles, and tasks, then click “Change”.
DR (Default Role)
DR stands for Default Role. This is an additional refinement on which staff should be used to populate the shift. With this checked, only staff that have the fill from role set as their default role. So only the staff who primarily work in this role rather than any staff member with the role assigned.
When disabled, the system will use any staff member with the fill from the role assigned.
This also has an additional mode which is shown as a green tick with a plus (). In this mode, the schedule tool will assign default role members first. If none are available then it will expand to include all members of that role.
Automatic Split Options
The split option allows the system to split the set shift times into smaller shifts around staff availability. The settings for how the shifts are split are contained on the Venue Settings page and there you can set max & min lengths for the shifts. StaffSavvy will use the requirements in the split shifts to give out the shifts to the staff who need them most based on the fill method.
The split up option finds a staff member for the first part of the shift (based on your priority to receive shifts) and then increases the length of shift up to the maximum duration.
It is very good at providing lots of staff with different shifts and ensuring staff all receive their hours. However, by its nature, it encourages shifts to be split between multiple staff members.
The split down option allows the system to try and assign the whole shift to a single staff member and only split the shift if they cannot complete the whole shift. In this instance, the shift will be split at the point in time they can’t continue to work or at the time that means each part of the shift is at least the minimum length. The system will then search for someone to fill the remaining shift and only split it further if no one can work the remaining portion.
It’s much more suited to trying to fill the shift with the same staff member and only splitting it further if no one is available.
The split option will create different shift combinations to fill the overall staff requirement.
Once your template is created you can use the template previously to create a schedule. See our page on 'Shift Schedule Creation - Managing Schedules' for more help.
Quick Shift Templates Roles and Tasks
Quick Shift Templates means you can specify which roles you will need for your Quick Shift Template. You can also specify the task they are doing, as can be seen in the image below.
For example if you have a Promotional Launch Party you might want to specify that you need Bar Staff specifically and you need them to be doing Bar Set up. This is useful if you have a type of event which you use frequently and streamlines the Shift Template process.
If you want to be more general with your shifts you can leave this as a staff member’s default role, this option just allows for more specificity.