Rostering strategies to reduce COVID risks

Rostering strategies to reduce COVID risks

Rostering strategies to reduce COVID risks

Rostering strategies to reduce COVID risks

Businesses who use online rostering software can create a schedule in minutes and then share it instantly. Thus, saving hours and costs associated with admin, errors, and failed communication.

COVID restrictions have limited where employees can work. However, as your staff are able to return to physical work environments, here are several roster strategies to help keep them safe, reducing risks for your employees, customers, and business.

#1 remote working

Remote working and working from home reached new heights over the past 18 months due to COVID. But, as businesses plan on re-opening doors and welcoming customers and personnel back into shops and offices, this doesn’t mean the end of remote working.

It is now a permanent work option for some employees. Others are allowed to work a portion of their working week at home. Some companies are allocating working from home as a business continuity strategy, reducing the impact of an office infection. Your online rostering solution can support these strategies. Supervisors can define a location as “remote”, creating shifts, so employees know where they are working. For employees working at home, time clock settings could enable remote check-in, if permitted.


#2 shift teams

Allocating employees to specific teams is not a new idea. Businesses create rosters with employees in particular groups to ensure the right skills and number of staff across work areas, by location, meet the customer service or production requirements.

As a COVID strategy, businesses have been incorporating additional layers of teams, Eg. A, B, C teams. However, this strategy still ensures staffing to meet business objectives and allows units to be isolated from each other as COVID risk mitigation and continuity strategy.

To support this strategy, supervisors set up custom teams. First, allocate employees to respective groups. Then create their shifts, applying team view filters in whatever amount of rotations needed for your operations.

#3 number of staff

No business plans to have more staff than needed. Outside of creating your roster to have the correct number of staff to get the job done. Limiting how many employees work on a given day or week is also a COVID risk strategy. If a roster becomes exposed to COVID, your other staff are then available to continue operations.

#4 staggering shifts

If your business allows, apply the staggering of employees across the roster with different start and finish times. Instead of starting all shifts at 9 am, modifications could spread start times across 7:30 am, 8 am, 8:30 am, and 9 am.

This strategy delivers COVID safety in several ways. Firstly, it spreads arrivals and departure in the workplace, shared spaces as supports social distancing. Secondly, for those employees who commute via public transport, it reduces exposure associated with the expected peak.

#5 shift change management

Whether your roster can incorporate any of the other strategies or not, managing the movement of employees for their arrival and departure for each shift may be a COVID strategy for your business. You can leverage different workplace entry points, restrict the use of common internal areas and even allocate employees to specific doors and times for workplace entry. Whatever actions your team can take to reduce congestion and interaction will all help and make your staff feel safer at work.


Other strategies for COVID safety

Touchless check-in

urhere mobile and time clock app provides employees touchless check-in options to reduce hygienic and touchpoint risks.

Contact tracing

urhere time clock app automatically generates an attendance record that can be used for a location and specific times contact tracing purpose.

Employee certification requirements

urhere digital document library allows the record management of any employee-specific certification or training requirements, e.g. COVID vaccination certificates, RSA, forklift license and specific training. The digital record-keeping also includes any separate issue or expiry dates to ensure compliance before any shift plan or start.

Common areas

Common areas like bathrooms, kitchen and tea rooms remain an area of focus for a COVID safe workplace. urhere online rostering can help allocated start, break and finish times to help reduce risk by the number of employees entering, taking a break and/or leaving the workplace.

No visitor’s policy

Restricting your workplace to employees and customers can also help reduce COVID risks. Preventing any visitors or office services to enter the workplace can help make your staff feel safe.

Physical workplace modifications

Workplace facilities can also be adapted to be safer with solutions like adjusting partition heights, adding screens between workstations and revising office layout. Of course, like the above shift strategies, consideration should be made to allocate, rather than rotate, desk spaces to employees to reduce infection risks.

Virtual meetings

Be sure to consider all employees, regardless of work location, by leveraging virtual meeting solutions.

Share your thoughts

If you have use any other roster strategies or have any other feedback, feel free to reach out to the team at hello@urhere.com.au




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Peter McLucas

Peter McLucas

Internationally experienced Sales & Marketing executive.