Scheduling employees is a complex task for small business owners. From tracking employees’ available times and paper time-off requests to handling schedule conflicts, it can take hours every week to keep your business staffed with the right people.
Fortunately, there are many scheduling apps that can help you streamline the scheduling process. Picking a suitable solution can take a bit of time and effort, but will save you lots of time in the long run.
In this article, we’ll compare the best employee scheduling apps for small businesses so you can choose the best option for your needs.
What Is Employee Scheduling App?
Employee scheduling apps are apps that streamline scheduling shifts for employees. Employers use them to send shift schedules to their workforce, manage schedule changes, and adopt flexible scheduling options such as shift swaps.
Scheduling apps often come with time and attendance tracking, communication, and other useful features for managing workforces such as payroll integration. Knowing what you need will give you specific criteria to look for in an app and choose the most suitable app for your business.
Top Features Of Employee Scheduling Software
Knowing what features to focus on when searching for the best employee scheduling software for a small business is important. You get clear criteria to compare and pick out the most suitable options.
Here are some features you should look for:
- Real-time data and data sync: Getting real-time data is helpful in handling late employees, no-shows, and emergencies. Data syncing allows you to access important business information anywhere and not rely on a specific device or platform.
- Reminders and notifications: Employees should be able to receive shift reminders so they can go to work on time. Employers can receive notifications of late arrivals or approval requests.
- Support for flexible scheduling options: Adding availability and unavailability, claiming open shifts, swapping and trading shifts, etc. are features that will come in handy to keep your business fully staffed and your employees happy.
- Tracking tools and timesheets: Tracking tools allow you to log worked hours and time spent on tasks or projects. Automated timesheets are vital for calculating payroll and sending invoices. Tracking tools also give analytics and insights into your workforce performance so you can make more informed decisions.
- Messaging: Handling schedule changes require transparent and timely communication, so the ability to chat via the scheduling app is convenient. You and your employees don’t have to use another chat platform to keep in touch.
- Customer support: For apps and computer programs, the ability to get technical support in time is important.
Besides looking for various features to get your scheduling work done, the ease of use and the price of the app are also important. An easy-to-use app ensures workers of all backgrounds can quickly pick up how to use it. The app should be affordable so small businesses with tight budgets can easily opt for a suitable plan.
5 Best Employee Scheduling Apps For Small Business
Here are some of the best employee scheduling apps for small businesses to get more done in less time.
Homebase is a scheduling solution for small business owners to manage work schedules, time clocks, payroll, and HR.
You can create, adjust, and send shift schedules to employees. Employees clock in and clock out using their phones so you can track their timesheets and attendance.
There are many additional features for managing employees on Homebase such as hiring or onboarding. Homebase also integrates with many POS and payroll systems such as Lightspeed, QuickBooks, Gusto, Shopify, etc.
- Time tracking
- Scheduling & availability
- Messaging & mobile app
- Hiring: Job posts & applicant tracking
- Performance tracking
- Labor cost controls & budgeting
- Time-off controls & PTO tracking
- New hire onboarding
- There’s a free plan for 1 location with basic features.
- Paid plans range from $24.95 per month per location to $99.95 per month per location if you want additional features such as alerts or cost controls.
Connecteam is another option among the best employee scheduling apps for small businesses, built for non-desk teams. It includes tons of features, from managing all business operations and team communication to managing your human resources.
Business owners can easily drag and drop to schedule shifts for employees. There are options for flexible scheduling options such as open shifts, unavailabilities, shift swaps, etc.
Connecteam displays an admin dashboard where you can track and supervise employees from one place. You can access features for employee engagement such as surveys, rewards, or events.
- Time clock
- Task management
- Forms & checklists
- Communication: chats, events, surveys
- Training & onboarding
- Recognition & rewards
- There’s a free plan for small businesses with under 10 employees for access to the most popular features.
- Paid plans start from $35 per month for the first 30 users, plus $0.6 per month for each additional user. Paid plans allow you to schedule open shifts and recurring shifts, access advanced time tracking, and manage multiple locations. There’s a free 14-day trial if you want to test the paid features out.
ezClocker is an employee scheduling and time tracking software made for small businesses. It doesn’t have all the bells and whistles, but it has all the features necessary to get your scheduling job done.
Employees can clock in and out with ezClocker using their mobile devices. You can set up a computer or iPad so employees can clock in/out on Web or a Kiosk app. You, as an employer, can verify employee attendance with GPS tracking and export employee timesheets to CSV files.
- Employee scheduling
- Time clock kiosk
- Clock in/out notifications
- GPS verification
- Time entries audit
- Export pay periods to spreadsheets
- Job assignment
- Overtime reports
- There’s a free 30-day trial so you can check the app out.
- Paid plans range from $10 per month for managing 15 employees to $50 per month for 100 employees.
4. When I Work
When I Work is an intuitive employee scheduling solution coming with various tools for scheduling, tracking time and attendance, and communicating with your team.
Small business owners can schedule employees with one click, receive shift confirmation notifications, share schedules instantly, and use labor budgeting tools to make smarter decisions. You can easily fill shifts, review time off, and manage team availability on the go.
When I Work provides a large knowledge base, giving teams adequate information to use the software effectively.
- Standard and advanced scheduling
- Time and attendance tracking
- Managing time off and availability
- Team messaging
- Shift and attendance reports
- Payroll and POS integrations
- On-demand pay
- There are 2 paid plans with a free 14-day trial: Standard and Advanced. You can opt for additional add-ons depending on your needs. The Standard plan starts at $2.50 per user per month, and the Advanced plan starts at $6.00 per user per month.
Camelo is one of the best employee scheduling apps for small businesses, built to streamline employee scheduling, time tracking, and team messaging in your business.
All features necessary for scheduling employees are included in all plans: creating, managing, and publishing work schedules, automated timesheets, submitting and approving leave requests, chats, reminders and notifications, etc.
With Camelo, employees can clock in and out via their mobile devices and get their timesheets recorded automatically. They can swap and trade shifts with coworkers or claim open shifts for extra wages.
The app interface is clean and simple so any hourly workers can learn how to use it quickly. There’s an extensive knowledge base to guide you and your workforce. You can also chat directly with the support team and get quick answers via an in-app chat channel.
- Employee scheduling
- Flexible scheduling: open shifts, shift swaps, shift trades
- Managing time off and availability
- Managing attendance and lateness
- Time clock and timesheets
- Team messaging & directory
- In-app chat with the support team
- There’s a free plan that offers all essential features for scheduling.
- The Pro plan is $3 per user per month, giving you access to advanced features and priority support. For personalized setups, you can contact the team to know more about the Enterprise plan.
Picking the best employee scheduling app for a small business is not simple. There are various criteria to consider, and it can be challenging to balance between functionality and budget. Figure out what your business needs are and use this review article to help you choose the best solution.