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Workforce Management

What Happens when a WFM Platform-as-a-Service meets a Field Services Platform-as-a-Service

Workers at Conference Table

UKG Dimensions delivers great workforce management capabilities.  But it has a hidden power – the ability to deeply interoperate with other solutions to solve even more business problems.  Dimensions can be thought of as the first workforce management Platform-as-a-Service.

A Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) is a massively configurable collection of Services exposed via API’s and user experiences.  They can be utilized by developers and solution consultants to create new solutions for new or previously unsatisfied use cases.  The PaaS delivers integration at the level of user experience, business process and data.

In a Field Services PaaS, the focus is on remote employees.  Criteria like skills, customer preference, availability, and location management are the keys to success.  Since these criteria are common across many industries, a platform built for Field Services can be configured to easily handle other use cases such as Professional or Financial Services.

Recently we were presented with this exact challenge – a large insurance company wanted to identify and schedule exempt employees around the world for special projects, such as a COVID-19 back to work planning team.  Each employee assigned to a team must be available the required percentage of their time for the required period of weeks.  They also must possess the skills needed on the project team.

After thinking about how this problem mapped to our solutions in Field Services, we were able to configure our platform to deliver a solution within 48 hours.  This is the power of the platform!

 

Construction Worker

In a Field Services PaaS, the auto scheduling algorithm uses employee availability and skills from the WFM PaaS and gets the work requirements from an ERP/Work Order or Electronic Medical Record (EMR) system.   Then it assigns the best employee to each task.  While the WFM PaaS does a great job of scheduling employees to shifts, the Field Services PaaS delivers task-based assignments using the shift schedules for employee availability.  Once we have this data these additional factors are used by the auto scheduling algorithm.  

Location:  With a global company such as our insurance company example, you might want to avoid assembling a team with some members in the US and others in Australia to avoid the challenges of time zone management.  Or you may want or need personnel with the insights of different geographies involved.  Having the ability to control this on a case by case basis delivers substantial benefits and flexibility.

Customer and Employee Ratings:  If the project or task is for a customer this is an obvious match.   Your customers want to work with people they trust and have found valuable.  But for an internal project this can be configured this as an employee-to-employee rating.  This is valuable input to scheduling – and helps create compatible and productive teams.

Continuity: In Field Service you usually want customers to see the same faces as often as possible.   In our example you might want the opposite – find the employees who have participated the least in special projects to give them exposure and advancement opportunities and discover unknown skills they can bring to project teams.  It can also add to the diversity of teams, which has been shown to improve the outcomes of projects – new perspectives can be challenging, and game-changing!

Overtime:  Exempt employees are not subject to overtime payment, but tracking the time means we can prevent over-committing and overworking employees, giving them better work/life balance. This opens opportunities for other employees to contribute and grow.  We often tap the same people for projects and tasks simply because we know they will say yes.  Hidden burnout of these employees is a real problem in the workplace.

The other data required is the work to be assigned.  If the work is already in a project management system, we can import that data or use API’s to load the work.  In this case the work was not in a project management system.  We used the power of our platform to create a form to create the work, including all necessary criteria to schedule resources.  

Once we have the work to be assigned and the configured rules all that is left is to push the button to do the auto scheduling and the problem was perfectly solved!

As you’ve read, the deployment of solutions that have the characteristic of a platform-as-a-service can deliver great benefits.  The ability of a user to seamlessly navigate complex business processes means better productivity and reduces user training requirements.  The flexibility of the underlying platforms, coupled with extreme interoperability, means that new business processes can be automated quickly.  And the easy flow of data between solutions means that the information needed to do complex work assignments is always available, timely, and accurate.  We have developed our platform with all these benefits in mind.  With UKG Dimensions we have a platform that delivers those benefits to us, and our customers.  It has allowed us to expand the use cases we address quickly and economically.  Most importantly, it helps us better serve our clients.

 

The content from this blog is courtesy of Alan Tonnesen, CEO - Passport.  Create a plan. Capture data. Compare plan vs. actual.  To learn more about Passport and UKG Partnership, visit their marketplace pages.