The Challenge

The Consumer, Trader and Tenancy Tribunals (CTTT) must efficiently schedule members into more than one hundred locations whose days, hours of operation and numbers of rooms vary widely. Staff scheduling must also manage equitable allotment of hours among part-time and full-time members, availability, acceptable travel radiuses, time-off scheduling, emergencies, and a host of other factors.

“To wrestle with that complex work schedule in Microsoft Excel,” says Evan Pidgeon of the CTTT’ s Business Development Unit (BDU), “required one full-time employee five days a week. Yet it was still very difficult to keep factors equitable for members. Our Excel spreadsheets stretched out to column DE—109 columns! We had a hundred rows down for members and a separate tab for each month. It was impossible for Excel scheduling templates to encompass and work with all necessary factors.

“We had large numbers of people opening and editing the shift schedules. Excel couldn’ t digest it all and constantly became corrupted. Worse, the difficulty of manipulating Excel forced us into rote solutions and routines—not the most efficient or fair way to manage dynamic scheduling.

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“We were in discussions with developers to custom-build fully automated employee rostering software into our Case Management System at a budget of up to $250,000. If not for Snap Schedule, we could have spent this amount.” Snap Schedule employee scheduling software is developed, marketed and supported by Business Management Systems (BMS) of Anaheim, California, USA.

The Solution

Evan says he got very lucky in finding the Snap Schedule rostering program on the Web. “Snap Schedule is the ultimate solution for employee shift scheduling and rostering,” he asserts. “It fit every single one of our parameters, looked easy to work with, had a familiar Microsoft look, and ran on very modern technology. I didn’ t see those capabilities in the competitors. They were messy, illogically laid out, and hard to see how to use them. Some were more difficult than Excel.”

Evan praises Snap Schedule’ s intuitive layout and logical navigation. “Where Snap Schedule saves you time is its ability to find and update vast amounts of information quickly. Everything’ s right where it ought to be, named what it ought to be. You just ‘ knew’ where to go. In the Calendar View, you see everything happening on a given date, then filter your options with members names on the side. The Manage tab is where you add employees and other management functions. At the Shift button, you add a shift.

“We had no problems setting up any of it to do these work schedules. BMS staff made us custom reports so we could disseminate information to members and staff via PDF. They wrote us a plug-in that includes and interrelates all our factors, and autofills shifts per our historical information and amount of work.”

The Benefits

“The first benefit,” says Evan, “is that Snap Schedule saved New South Wales taxpayers $250,000 in custom programming the second we saw how good this staff rostering program is, and stopped looking further.

“Snap Schedule is also saving us quite significant payroll costs, as we’ re using fewer members to get through our caseload. It gives us the visibility and control to schedule more members for full days of work. Previously, we often paid full salary for days we could only partially fill with hearings. Now, Snap Schedule thoroughly fills members’ days, so we’ ve cut back on more-expensive part-time staff. We’ re rostering more tightly and more frugally. Now, our scheduling person isn’ t always running in catch-up mode. She works on business-enhancement benefits, such as reports so we see what’ s really happening across our area.

“Snap Schedule’ s time-off scheduling and ease of immediately compensating for emergencies or sick staff, and then re-scheduling people, is amazing,” says Evan. “Sensibly, Shift View has a ‘Select an Employee for the Shift’ feature. You drill down to see who’ s available, qualified, and not already over-scheduled. It’ s done in a minute, and I know it’ s right. Right-click any shift in Shift View to bring up a dialog box. Specify your criteria and Snap Schedule presents your available, applicable staff. With the number of people we have, we could never keep up without this feature.”