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Mobile Workforce Management

You may have read stories lately about widespread advancements in remote work, with an increasing number of employees working from home or other non-traditional locations. What is somewhat less reported on, however, is the fact that there are many industries where working in a single, set location every day has never been the norm. In labor-driven fields such as trucking, healthcare, construction, and manufacturing, workers are frequently on the move as a regular part of their daily activities. For these kinds of mobile workforces, it just makes sense for employers to invest in an equally mobile workforce management system.

Just as the business world has shifted to focus on the online aspects of the overall customer experience, human resources teams need to begin focusing on the online employee experience. Some businesses that put a great deal of focus on upgrading their mobile options for better customer service and customer satisfaction neglect to give that same consideration to their mobile employees. To put it plainly, the 21st century workforce includes more remote employees than ever before, as well as thousands of workers whose roles have always required maximum mobility. All of those mobile workers require mobile access for basic functions like schedule management, time and attendance, learning management, and other essential services.

What is mobile workforce management?

Mobile workforce management (MWM) software solutions are designed to streamline processes for HR staff who deal with employees working remotely or at off-site locations. Managing a mobile workforce requires more flexibility and adaptability than traditional tools can provide. With more and more employees across the United States working remotely or in the field, employers should look for mobile workforce management software that provides consistent, accessible support for employees, administrators, and your HR team.

Mobile apps

The most visible element of mobile workforce management has been a growing shift toward app-based time and attendance. More and more worksites across a range of industries now employ mobile apps to track employee time. Rather than requiring workers to punch in to a physical, centralized time clock, apps compatible with iOS and Android operating systems can be accessed easily from a mobile phone or tablet. That allows managers and employees to bring a fully functional time and attendance system along with them in the field, at construction sites, to home visits, and anywhere else the actual work is taking place.

Cloud-based mobile apps allow field workers and other offsite employees to make real-time adjustments to their upcoming shift schedules, view their paycheck history, submit time-off requests, submit expenses, provide feedback, and more using only their mobile devices. Managers working with mobile employees can use those same tools to manage schedules, receive push notifications, approve employee requests, and much more.

Field service management

For employers that regularly dispatch field employees to perform tasks like deliveries, maintenance, repairs, and installations, field service management tools are a must. Your automated workforce management system can help your HR team provide workers in the field with convenience and support when they go out on the road, even in locations with limited or no internet connectivity. A time tracking tool that records and saves employee data for later entry into your payroll system can save a significant amount of time and effort for your HR staff while also improving the accuracy of your payments.

Not only can your workforce management system make scheduling and dispatching employees to the field easier, it can also boost productivity in a number of other ways. Less time spent handling repetitive time management tasks means more time to focus on the job at hand, which also means less chance of cost overruns and overtime pay. Equipping your workers with mobile technology also helps to empower employees, which increases engagement and can ultimately help to improve employee retention rates.

Location tracking

In many worker-driven industries, employee location tracking is an increasingly desirable element of a mobile workforce management system. Location tracking generally involves using a GPS navigation system to track employee movements throughout the workday. This is an especially useful tool for workers in roles that require a good deal of travel or movement. That might include truckers and delivery drivers, construction workers moving between work sites, healthcare workers making in-home visits, employees who make service calls, and anyone else whose job keeps them on the move. By keeping an eye on these employees' comings and goings, a business can accurately estimate arrival times, develop more efficient schedules, and track valuable equipment and merchandise.

Location tracking can also be a useful tool in settings such as large manufacturing or warehouse facilities, where the movements of workers throughout the day can help employers make decisions about workplace design, staffing numbers, health and safety practices, and much more. For employers with workers in multiple locations, GPS tracking can provide useful comparisons between facilities and help each location operate efficiently.

Real time data analytics

Data drives everything in a modern workplace, and your workforce management software system is the most effective way to collect, track, and apply that data in ways that benefit both employees and management. Using mobile solutions to log time and attendance and scheduling data is a great way to track employee data in real time.

Being able to analyze and understand data as it develops makes it easier to update workplace practices, make informed hiring and recruitment decisions, adjust employee schedules, and much more. Additionally, a quality mobile workforce management system should also be able to create customizable reports that help your organization stay compliant with labor laws and other regulations.

In an era where workforces are more mobile and widely dispersed than ever before, a workforce management system that can move and adapt along with them is increasingly a necessary tool. From mobile apps that manage employee scheduling and time and attendance to location trackers that use GPS to create more efficient practices to data analytics tools that inform a wide range of decisions, the future of workforce management is looking more mobile every day.

To learn more about the benefits and safety factors of a mobile app, visit our blog post "How Can Business Leaders Help Build a Safer Workplace" or go to Ascentis Mobile App.

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