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How to take the stress out of scheduling: Bid Shifts

The more I interact with restaurant and retail managers, the more I realize that everyone has their own style of employee scheduling.

Some people really enjoy the ability to copy and paste in Excel. Some people prefer to handwrite their schedules. Some people schedule based on employee preferences.

TimeForge can accommodate the vast majority of managerial scheduling preferences.

One option TimeForge offers much more efficiently is the bid shift.

What is a bid shift?

A bid shift is a scheduling term used to describe when an employer makes an open shift available to be claimed by a qualified employee.

This can be done for a number of reasons, such as:

  • attract more qualified candidates,
  • fill an empty shift, or
  • entice current employees to work additional shifts or hours.

Whatever the reason, bid shifts make work easier for managers while giving employees more options.

This makes bid shifts a win-win choice, especially if you have a streamlined system for handling them, such as TimeForge.

Traditional process of filling open shifts (inefficient)

In the past, shift managers had to rely on manual processes to track and manage employee shifts.

This involved keeping paper lists of staff, phone calls to check in with employees about their availability, and a lot of time spent manually calculating hours for payroll.

All of this was very inefficient and time-consuming for managers.

As a result, many managers had difficulty accurately tracking labor costs and ensuring compliance with wage regulations.

Online labor management (TimeForge) streamlines this process by keeping managers and employees on the same page and making it much easier for managers to fill open shifts.

3 Benefits of TimeForge Bid Shifts

A TimeForge Bid Shift is a way for managers to quickly and easily let their employees know that there’s a shift up for grabs, and allow the employees to bid on the shift, like an auction.

Bid Shifts can be “first come, first served”, meaning the first person who bids automatically wins. Or, managers can receive bids from every interested employee and pick the winner.

Benefit #1: Bid shifts keep employees and managers happy

Bid Shifts are a great way to keep managers and employees happy.

Employees get to decide which shifts they want to work, and managers get the coverage they need without having to worry about scheduling their employees for shifts they can’t or don’t want to work.

Everybody wins!

Benefit #2: Bid shifts + overtime alerts take the stress out of scheduling

Coupling Bid Shifts with alerts when employees are nearing overtime or their maximum hours is a great way to take the stress out of scheduling.

You know your employees are getting the hours they need, because they’re essentially picking their own shifts, and you know they aren’t getting too many hours, because you’re being alerted when you need to stop scheduling employees for a pay period.

Benefit #3: Bid shifts help protect the business from labor law violations

If you operate in an area with fair workweek laws, bid shifts can be a huge boon to your business.

Why? Because they are opt-in shifts that employees can volunteer for. As such, they typically do not come with the penalties associated with scheduling someone at the last minute.

For more info on how this works, we recommend our article on how bid shifts help with fair workweek.

Bid shifts are good for business

In addition to bid shifts, TimeForge has several other options to accommodate the scheduling preferences of each and every manager.

Take a look at the AutoSchedulerShift Swaps, and ShiftBuilder features!

Or, learn how to use bid shifts to maximize scheduling efficiency in TimeForge.

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