Scheduling is an optional feature which enables you to define sophisticated work shift classes, including breaks, rounding rules and more. Using those shift classes, you then create your employee work schedule, deciding when employees can clock IN to work. Scheduling is available on all account plans.
II. Set up
We'll walk you through here how to set up the scheduling features so you can use them in your business. We won't go over every feature in this article. The purpose of this article is to give you an introductory orientation to the scheduling features, and get you set up a with a basic work schedule.
First, you'll want to enable the scheduling feature, which is disabled by default. To do that, log in to the Fareclock Console at https://console.fareclock.com. From there, click on 'Settings' in the top menu bar, and then select Shifts. You should see the following:
You'll first want to enable the feature by selecting the Shift mode menu. There are two options to enable scheduling:
- Schedule - This setting require the employee to have a scheduled shift in order to clock IN to work.
- Schedule+Open - This setting will first check if the employee is scheduled to work upon clocking IN, and if so, then use those rules. If the employee is not scheduled, then it will allow the employee to work under an "Open shift", using configured defaults which we will discuss more shortly.
After you make your selection, make sure you click the green Save button.
B. Open Shift Defaults
If you selected "Schedule" in the prior section, then you can skip this section and move on to the next section titled "Shift Classes". If you selected "Schedule+Open", then you'll want to set up your open shift settings in case an employee clocks in under an Open Shift.
You should now see on your screen something like this:
The default settings are located in the bottom section of this form titled "Open Shift defaults" as shown in the screenshot. You'll want to define your Open work shift, which can be either time-based or a flexible time shift of a maximum length. You can optionally allow multiple shifts. You can also specify rounding rules for the beginning and end of the shift. Before you can select rounding rules, you'll need to define them in the Rounding Rules editor. To access this editor, you'll want to click on the "Rounding Rules" button button, as shown in the upper right of the above screenshot. Rounding Rules are discussed in more detail in a later section of this article.
C. Shift Classes
You'll now want to define your first Shift Class, which you will later use to create your schedule. To access the Shift Class editor, click on the "Shift Classes" button, as shown near the top of the screenshot above.
You should now see something like this:
To add your first shift class, click the blue Add Shift Class button in the upper right. You should see this:
i. Shift times
You'll now want to define your shift class settings. First, give it a name. You can also choose a color to display for this shift on the scheduler, which we'll go over later. Then decide whether this shift should be "Fixed time" or "Flexible time".
a. Fixed time - means that the employee's shift starts at a specific time (e.g., 8 am) and ends at a specific time (e.g., 5 pm). There still can be some leeway to coming early or late, but there is a general time frame to the shift.
On a fixed time shift, in addition to the start and end times, you can also optionally define:
1. Lock out times: If an employee tries to clock in before the Lock Out Before time or after the Lock Out After time, then the punch attempt will be rejected.
2. Revision Rules: If an employee clocks in between Early and Start times, or between End and Late times, then the punch gets round to the start or end time. For example, in the above screenshot, if the employee clocks in between 6:30 - 7:00 am, then the punch gets rounded to 7:00 am for the purpose of calculating total hours. Note that the original exact punch will still be recorded, so you'll know the exact time; but the total hours will reflect a 7:00 am start. If the employee clocks before the Start Early time or after the End Late time, then the punch does not get rounded and remains as is.
3. Grace Period Rules: These times are a grace period. If configured, an employee may be credited for the full shift if arriving late and/or leaving early within the specified time window.
If the shift crosses midnight, you'll want to check the "Multi-day shift" option to define day offsets for each time (i.e., +/- N days).
b. Flexible time - means the employee can work at any time for a specified duration.
For a flexible shift, you'll just need to specify the shift length.
ii. Other shift class settings
You can also specify here geo fences, rounding rules and breaks for your shift class. These rules are discussed more in later sections of this article. Just note here that you'll need to define and save those rules before you can apply them to your shift class.
Regarding breaks, you can apply multiple breaks to your shift class. You can also combine breaks, so that you can use part or all of a break duration in an earlier or later break. For example, if the shift class has two breaks, the employee can miss or take a shorter first break and take a longer second break, or vice versa.
i. Break times
To define breaks, click on the "Breaks" button near the top. Then click the (+) button in the blue header bar on the left. You should see this:
After giving the break a name, you'll need to decide whether "Workers clock OUT for break" or "Workers never clock OUT for break".
1. Employees clock OUT for break - Employees are expected to punch out for this break. If the employee neglects to punch out, you can optionally deduct the break anyway by checking the box labelled "Deduct automatically if not used".
You'll then need to define whether the punched break is "time-based" or "relative to shift". In either case, you'll be able to define a time window in which the employee can clock out for the break. If an employee clocks out outside this window, then it's not considered a "break", but rather it's considered as an absence.
You'll also need to define how long the break normally lasts, and also how long it may be. This latter setting is used if the employee returns late from break. If they clock in past this time, then the entire clock-out period is considered a break. If they clock in before that time and you checked the box labelled "the break counts toward total hours", then they will not get paid for the amount of time they are late.
2. Employees never clock OUT for break - Employees do not punch OUT for break, and you simply specify the duration of the break and when it gets applied in relation to the beginning of the shift.
F. Rounding Rules
To define a rounding rule, click on the "Rounding Rules" button near the top. Then click the (+) button in the blue header bar on the left. You should see this:
There are two numbers which need to specified for rounding rules:
1. Rounding increment - This number is the unit which employee hours get rounded to. For example, you might want to round in 15 minute increments, such as 8 hours, 14 minutes might get rounded to 8 hours, 15 minutes.
2. Break point - This number is the # of of minutes within the rounding increment at which to round up. For example, if the break point is 8 minutes. Then 8 hours, 7 minutes gets rounded down to 8 hours flat; and 8 hours, 8 minutes gets rounding up to 8 hours, 15 minutes.
G. Set up Schedule
Now that you've defined your settings, you'll want to set up the employee work schedule to specify when the employee can clock in and out of work. Note that if in the beginning you set "Use schedule, then default" for shift mode, then if an employee is not schedule for work when clocking in, then they would clock in to a default Open Shift.
You can schedule shifts either by worker, by team, by job, or by device.
To set up the schedule, hover over the "Manage" button in the top menu bar, and then select "Schedule". You should see something like this:
By default, it shows a list of workers, which you can search and filter. You can also switch to Device, Job, or Team views by changing the view menu at the top of the list. There are also tools at the top to change the date, timeline, export, as well as other tools shortcuts.
To schedule a worker, click the '+' over the appropriate cell. A modal will open to create a new shift.
You have the option to assign to multiple workers, set the shift class (or add a new one), make the shift repeating, and enter notes. Once you're done, then save and the shift will be added to the schedule.
If you have Job Costing and/or the Geo feature enabled, you also will have the option to set a Job and Geo Fence directly on the Schedule Event:
Alternatively, you can also create Time Off by clicking on the "Time Off" button in the upper right of the modal. Time Off Requests will also appear in the schedule, where you can approve or deny them.
You can also set up multiple shifts per day if you wish.
A full schedule might look like the following:
H. Set up Teams
Teams are a convenient way to set up schedules for groups of workers. To create a Team, click on the Team button in the blue ribbon above the schedule.
Once you've created a team, you'll want to assign the appropriate workers to that team under Settings => Users. You can assign one worker at a time, or in bulk.
Finally, you can assign shift to the team on the schedule by navigating to the schedule's Teams view.
I. Assign shifts to jobs
Alternatively to scheduling shifts to workers or teams, you can assign shifts to jobs. For more information on job costing, see our help article here: How To Set Up Costing. You will need to have costing enabled and set up to use this feature.
When an employee clocks IN on a job that has a shift assigned to it, if the employee is not already in the middle of a shift, then the shift class assigned to that job will be used.
To assign a shift to a job, go to Settings => Costing, click on the Jobs tab, and select the job you want to assign. At the bottom of the job edit form, there is a "Shift overrides" section. In that section, you can create a shift calendar as follows:
Shifts assigned to jobs will override shifts on employee shift calendar and shifts on devices.
You can also assign shifts to jobs on the main schedule in Jobs view. To enable shift override for the job from the main schedule, click on the down arrow next to the job name, and select "Enable Shift Schedule Override". Then you can add the shifts.
J. Assign shifts to devices
You can also assign shifts to a device.
When an employee clocks IN on a device that has a shift assigned to it, if the employee is not already in the middle of a shift, then the shift class assigned to that job will be used.
To assign a shift to a clock, go to Settings => Devices, and select the device you want to assign. In the middle of the clock edit form, there is a "Shift overrides" section. In that section, you can create a shift schedule.
Shifts assigned to devices will override shifts on employee shift calendar, but not shifts assigned to jobs.
You can also assign shifts to device on the main schedule in Devices view. To enable shift override for the job from the main schedule, click on the down arrow next to the device name, and select "Enable Shift Schedule Override". Then you can add the shifts.
K. Managing employees in the middle of a shift
There may be times when you need to edit a shift while an employee is already clocked IN, perhaps to extend the shift, work through breaks, or change other information. To do that, you can edit the Shift Card overrides for existing shifts under Manage => Time Cards, by clicking on the pencil icon next to the punch, as follows:
As shown in the screenshot, you can also see how the shift rules are applying the breaks, rounding rules, and revisions.
L. Multiple Shifts per Day
For more information on allowing an employee to work multiple shifts per day, see our help article dedicated to that topic:
There is a Schedule Report where you can see the shift schedule for your entire company together.
To see worker hours on prior shifts, use the Time Cards report, which will group punches for the shift and display total hours according to the shift rules. There are also some hidden columns that can be enabled as follows:
Any exception codes will show in red on the report. The codes are abbreviated as follows:
- A = Added by administrator
- E = Edited by administrator
- F = Face error
- G = Geo error
- M = Missed punch
- SE = Started Early
- SL = Started Late
- MB = Missed Break
- SB = Short Break
- LB = Long Break
- LE = Left Early
- LL = Left Late
- OS = Out of Shift
- ★ = Flagged
You'll also be able to view associated shift information for a punch under Manage=>Punches by going to the Advanced section in the edit punch form and clicking the "view" link next to shift summary. You can also view the shift information from the schedule calendar when opening an event for an individual employee, and clicking on summary link.
IV. Migrating existing customers
If you are an existing customer, who already has been using Fareclock without scheduling, you should be aware that existing/prior punches will not automatically be recalculated by the new shift rules. In order to bring the old data forward into the new shift configuration, you'll want to go to Manage => Raw Punches, query all your prior punches, and perform the Bulk Action "Attach to Shift", as follows: