Although it is just by co-incidence that we’re releasing our publish/draft scheduling method on Valentine’s Day, given the popularity of this request, the timing does fit rather well
The publish/draft scheduling format allows you to work in the way you have been for years – in privacy on your schedules until they’re ready to be posted (published) for your staff to see. ShiftPlanning will even take care of sending the latest work schedule to your staff, as well as keeping them up-to-date when changes are made to a previously published schedule.
We’ve tried to integrate this new functionality into the existing architecture as cleanly as possible, and as this is a new feature we’ll be working rapidly on improvements over the coming weeks. Here is a step-by-step guide to switching your existing ShiftPlanning employee scheduling account over to the new format (all new accounts will default to this mode):
Edit your schedule settings under ‘Admin’->’Edit Settings’ to enable the format:
You will be prompted with a reminder to let you know that we will automatically ‘publish’ all of your existing shifts. We won’t send notices to your staff, we’ll simply make the change internally to set them as published:
No matter what view-mode you’re in we’ll provide you with a real-time update of the ‘published status’ of that schedule(s). Essentially we take a look at every shift displayed in your current view to determine the status between:
Shifts that have already happened in the past are considered past shifts and aren’t used for publishing, as essentially historical data, is just that, and is always available through our web-interface.
Shifts on this schedule have never been published before, and as such are not visible to staff.
Shifts on this schedule have all been published, are viewable by staff, and all employees have been notified that the schedule is live (provided they haven’t disabled notifications for when schedules are published).
Changes have been made to shift(s) on this schedule, and it needs to be republished. Republishing a schedule will again make the shifts visible to staff, as well as notify those employees affected by the changes to make sure that everyone is up-to-date with the latest changes (provided they haven’t disabled notifications for when schedules are republished).
For a quick demonstration of how the draft/publish method works I created two shifts next week, each with one employee:
My schedule is now ready to be published, so I click on the publish link at the top, and confirm in the dialog:
Immediately you’ll notice how the shifts have changed and now show as published with the ‘lock’ symbol, as well as the schedule status has changed to ‘published’:
Both employees were also notified that the schedule is posted (also making these shifts visible through the web-interface):
As an example let’s make a change to one of the shifts:
You’ll notice both that the lock icon now is shown as ‘unlocked’ meaning that the schedule hasn’t been republished since the changes were made. You’ll now have the option to ‘Republish’:
We look at all the shifts in the current schedule view and analyze which employee have been affected by the changes and we only notify them that changes have been made to a previously published schedule:
If you have any suggestions/comments/questions on this new functionality we would love to hear from you. As I mentioned at the beginning of this post this is new functionality within the application that we’re releasing with ‘Beta’ attached to it. We’ve done this, as we want to communicate with you that this is new functionality that will be under development to improve/fix any bugs over the coming weeks/months. (You’ll notice that we lifted the Beta notice from the Online Time Clock with this release as well).