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Microsoft Shifts from end user perspective

Microsoft Shifts | In my previous post we took a look on how to get started with Microsoft Shifts. Let’s now take a look at what the end users experience is like.

End user experience

When the user opens the Teams application and select Shifts this is what the user will be greeted by.

Here we can see that the user has some shifts applied. We can see the dates, and what label and group the shift belongs to.

If we then select a shift, we can then see additional information regarding the shift.

Here we can see more in-depth information about the shift. What time it begins and ends, what date, what work group and what schedule team it involves. We can also see the daily notes, shift notes, and the activities surrounding this shift.

Swapping and offering shifts

Let’s say that the user wants to swap this shift because his daughter’s birthday party is on this day. So, it would suit him better if he could work the morning shift so he can attend it. The user then selects the swap option.

He then writes the reasoning why he wants to swap shifts. After that it’s time to find a user he can swap with.

Here we can see that Jack Finnigan is working a Morning Shift. We then select him and send the request. In this case Jack is also a Team manager which means he can approve the request without waiting for a manager to respond. If Jack wasn’t a manager/owner, we would then have to wait for a manager’s approval as well.

We get the green light, and it’s approved with a note from the manager. And now we can see that our shifts have been updated with the new swapped one.

A user can either choose swap or offer shift. When we swap we target one specific shift. And when we offer, we want to give our shift away to someone, here we can target multiple users.

See who’s working today

If we want to see who is working on what day, we can press the little icon next to the magnifying glass.

Availability and requesting time off

Another feature is the ability for the user to show availability which can be useful when managers are planning eventual shifts.

The user selects the + sign at the overview and then selects availability.

Here the user can specify at what day they’re available. They can also specify time frames and non-available days.

Requesting time off

They can also request time off. Here they get to choose the reason and the timeframe. After they have requested it, they must wait for a manager’s approval.

Requesting open shifts

In Shifts we have two ways of distributing shifts. We can either create them and target them to specific users, or we can create open shifts. Open shifts mean that you’ll have to request and be approved to get the shift.

Let’s say that we have shared a new open shift for our firstline workers. The workers will get a notification on their phone and can find the new open shift under “Open shifts”

Here we will see the new shared shifts. After we have selected the shift, we get more information regarding it. And we can then request it and wait for a manager’s approval. After a manager’s approval it will then be added to our schedule.

Time clock

The time clock is a great tool for tracking if an employee has clocked in at the right time and at the right location (If you’re using the location feature).

The user will receive a notification that their shift is about to start and that it’s time to clock in.

The user then clicks the notification or selects time clock in Shifts.

The user can then hold the play button to begin the shift and do the same when it’s time for breaks but with the break-button.

When the users shift is done, they stop it by holding down the button. They will then get redirected to a new window.

Here they can see their time reports and either confirm them or edit them. They can also add time reports manually if they forgot to start the timer. And if they want to, they can also add notes.

One thing to note here is that all changes to the default shift times will be logged and can be viewed in the final time report we export in Shifts.

Other functionalities

Some other tools we have at our disposal is the fact that we are using Microsoft Teams. This is nothing new to the people who are used to working with teams but can still be worth mentioning.

We can let our workers collaborate using the chat, calls and teams.

Here we can see that Parker needs help unloading the new shipment, so he sends Jack a chat asking for help.  After he got the assistance with unloading the truck, he called Jack to remind him about the invoice.

And here’s an example with the Team, where we can structure our workforce in different channels to have easy access to important documents and other necessities.

And there you have it folks!

It’s a straight forward and easy to understand solution for firstline workers. In my honest opinion I think that this tool can grow and become a force to reckon with. And the reasoning behind it is it’s simplicity, and the collaboration tools that Microsoft Teams offer. We can gather and distribute all the necessary documents and files in one place for our user to access. I wouldn’t be surprised to see a lot more company’s adopt it in the near future.

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