The pros and cons of delegating employee scheduling vs retaining control
Management is stressful.
In fact, 76% of managers feel overwhelmed by their professional responsibilities—which include motivating employees, generating profit and setting goals.
Completing these high-priority tasks alone can lead to managers working overtime and experiencing burnout.
In small-to-medium businesses, a manager's responsibilities may also include ordering supplies, processing payroll and creating rotas.
While oversight of smaller tasks is important, delegating some of your workload can be advantageous—whether to existing or new employees. Failure to delegate tasks can negatively impact your wellbeing, damage your relationship with employees and stall income generation.
Here we’ll explore the advantages of managing rotas yourself, as well as the benefits of delegating this responsibility to another person.
The advantages of managing rotas yourself
Despite the risks associated with being an overworked manager, retaining ownership of rota management can be beneficial and may make you think again about whether you delegate this task.
Managers are uniquely positioned to see the big picture—helping to promote equality across the organisation. Being at the top of the company structure means that you have an overarching view of operations, which is very important when creating a rota.
Managers are least likely to have favourite employees, being driven primarily by positive outcomes rather than prioritising individuals. Your position naturally creates a degree of separation between you and your employees, allowing for fairer staffing decisions to be made.
Fairly-distributed shifts create less friction and frustration. As a manager, you’re also at higher risk of negative consequences if you are seen to be offering shifts unfairly, further strengthening the need for you to distribute appropriately.
Through managing your rotas, you can make staffing decisions based on strengths. You’ll be able to allocate specific shifts to those with the required skills.
Distributing shifts based on strength will boost productivity and improve your bottom line.
Managing your own rota means that you’ll be up-to-date with staffing changes as they happen, giving you a better insight into how your company is operating.
Through being the rota orchestrator, you can receive notifications about holiday requests, sickness and declined shifts. Knowing how your staff serve—who takes less-desirable shifts, who rarely accepts shifts or who requests holidays during busy periods—makes you a better manager.
Oversight of the rota provides a basis from which to acknowledge and reward hard work. Through live updates, you’ll know which employees are taking on last-minute shifts and can reward them for their role in supporting the company during challenging times.
Real-time status updates increase oversight and prepare you for the working day ahead—able to see who will be working on what days and shaping your operations accordingly. If you need a meeting with Employee X, for example—knowing that they are working on a particular day will help you to plan ahead.
Setting up instant notifications for quicker responses will let you make quick staffing decisions and identify those going above and beyond.
The advantages of delegating rota management
While there are advantages to retaining ownership of your company’s rotas, learning to delegate can be good for both managers and staff.
Appoint assistants to handle time off requests, make shifts available and oversee the distribution of rotas.
Delegating the role of rota management demonstrates that you trust your team to organise themselves, showing that you have faith in their ability to do a task only you have previously done. Trusting employees boosts their confidence in you and morale as a whole.
In fact, 74% of employees say it makes them feel positively about their own work when they have a manager who fosters trust.
Handing over tasks also offers employees great learning and development opportunities. While rota creation may not be the best use of your time, it may benefit others, helping them to develop new skills and climb the ladder.
The main advantage of delegating rota responsibilities is that it frees up time. With the additional hours, you can contain your work within the 9-5 day or put the new time to good use—forging connections with potential partners, expanding your customer base and formulating strategies.
It’s useful to remember that, when you delegate, you don’t have to lose complete ownership of a task. As the manager, you can check-in on a delegated task at any time or ask assistants to compile weekly updates for you.
Floor staff simply might have a better perspective on where in the business additional workers are needed, meaning that your decision to involve them in the rota compliments your ambition to create a successful company.
Managing rotas effectively
There are advantages to both retaining and delegating the task of rota creation. While managing the rota yourself allows for better oversight, delegating the responsibility can save you time.
Fundamentally, whoever manages this task—whether it be you or another staff member—the priority should be ensuring that rotas are distributed on-time and operate fairly.