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I'm sure you know by now that personnel scheduling is not fun or easy.
It can actually be very difficult.
You may have a few different squads rotating multiple shifts 24/7. Whether you have an 800 person or 25
In 2008, the East Lampeter Township Police Department started using a scheduling software program called PlanIt Police. They were excited but nervous to make the change since they were always used to using paper and excel to manage their scheduling.
I spoke with Captain Zerbe about how PlanIt Police scheduling software has impacted their department. Captain Zerbe handles all the scheduling at East Lampeter Township Police Department. He estimates that they have saved at least 10 hours every week since implementing the scheduling software. The system has streamlined daily processes and made information easier to access for everyone in the organization.
Find out here how much time scheduling software saved Gallia County Sheriff's Office.
It is no secret that technology today can make processes more efficient. The question we find ourselves asking is how much time can it really save us? Let's get into the specifics...
Scheduling software can save you time by:
- Streamlining everyday tasks
- Enhancing communication throughout the organization
- Storing information in one place
There are various reasons for switching to police scheduling software. For Captain Zerbe, his main reason was the accessibility.
When asked what feature proved the system to be effective, he stated, "I would say PlanIt being so user-friendly, especially with smartphone technology. The ability to see the schedule anywhere and interact with it, this is what makes is so useful."
Let's look into the 3 points listed earlier on how police scheduling software can save you time.
1. Streamlines Daily Tasks
How does your department handle frequent processes such as special assignments, open shifts, shift trades, court scheduling, and time off?
With these functions built into the system, it makes it possible for them to streamline.
For example, an officer can go into his/her system and request time off. The administrator will get a notification that a request for time off has been submitted and are then able to approve or deny. Once the decision is made, it will notify the officer as well as update the schedule automatically.
2. Enhances Communication Throughout
Each person in the organization will get a login. They can view their schedule in real time from wherever they are. All they need is internet access and a device such as a desktop, laptop, tablet or smartphone. If they are not in a position to access the system (no internet) but have their phones, they can still receive the call or text blasts that administrators send out.
It is no longer a timely process to communicate messages throughout the organization. Police scheduling software provides a solution.
3. Stores Your Information in One Place
All the functions associated with scheduling in the system allow you to stay organized easily. No more time spent searching for that missing overtime form Ofc. Smith submitted last month and never got paid for. You can export the information using any of the 100's of reports that are built in the system.
Do you need a daily schedule printed out or emailed to someone? No problem. Do you need a report of all the time offs that were approved in the last month? No problem. Do you need a report of the overtime hours that were logged for a certain vendor? No problem.... Okay, you get the point.
If you are unsure if your police officer scheduling system can handle all the reports you need, just ask!
First, figure out what the main needs are in your organization. Then, look at some available solutions and make sure to ask questions to understand how it can really work(or can't work) for you. East Lampeter Township Police Department needed to simply streamline processes and enhance visibility. Using Excel for scheduling wasted them over 500 hours a year on duplicate work.
For access to East Lampeter Township Police Departments full case study, please click the button below.
- 5 Free Officer Scheduling Options
- Top 5 Scheduling Software Problems and Solutions
- How Much Does Police Scheduling Software Cost?