How AI can help combat the current labor shortage

The Great Resignation has contributed to labor shortages that have had an impact on all businesses, especially those with a large amount of manpower per hour. And as companies search for solutions, including new ways to attract and retain talent, employees continue to re-evaluate their priorities for what they value in their jobs, says Kshitij Dayal, senior vice president of engineering and operations at Legion.

Big organizations like walmart Y Goal they are raising wages to attract hourly workers. However, with so many companies now offering record sign-on bonuses and salary packages, employers looking to compete in a tight job market must find a new way to win over employees. AI-powered workforce management and demand forecasting may be the solution.

Demand forecasting with AI-derived insights

All brick-and-mortar businesses experience periods of peak and low demand for labor. From holidays to weather events, throughout the day, week, and month, many factors influence the ebbs and flows of a business. However, without the right tools to adequately forecast demand, managers are unable to create optimal employee work plans and schedules, as they are not sure how many employees need to work on a given day or at a given time. Scheduling too many people will lead to overspending on labor, and scheduling too few will ensure lost revenue opportunities as employee productivity can be hampered trying to keep up with customer demand.

For example, a slow day at a restaurant with too many employees creates business losses, while a busy day with too few workers can cause the business to lose revenue as they are unable to seat and serve as many people due to not having the right numbers. . of servers or chefs. Additionally, inefficient scheduling practices can create disgruntled and dissatisfied employees, as they feel overworked when there are staff shortages.

Workforce management platforms that incorporate AI-powered demand forecasting capabilities can help solve these problems. They leverage machine learning algorithms to analyze key data points and demand drivers (eg, daily weather, local events, etc.), looking for patterns and market trends. Predictive analytics models then use this information to provide insights into customer behaviors to help determine where demand is likely to come from and what the best employee hours will be. By harnessing the power of AI for demand forecasting, employers can create highly accurate schedules that allow them to optimize their labor efficiency. Plus, they can more easily match their business needs with employee skills and preferences, creating a better employee experience.

See more: 4 Ways Emerging Workplace Technology Can Alleviate Perceived Labor Shortages

Incorporate scheduling agility into workforce management

In today’s highly competitive job market, employers must also offer schedule flexibility, especially as 85% of hourly workers they believe it is important to have more control over their schedules. However, managers who still use traditional manual methods of creating work schedules (for example, spreadsheets or even “pen and paper”) risk creating inefficient schedules, as well as wasting time that can be spent on activities. of higher value, such as how to work with customers and provide constructive and positive feedback to your employees.

AI-powered workforce management solutions can automate the entire scheduling process, allowing managers to easily and efficiently generate schedules that comply with local labor laws (for example, meal and rest breaks) and while satisfying the preferences of employees. These smart scheduling solutions also allow employees to easily request time off, swap shifts, and even take additional shifts, often with a single click on a mobile app, creating a better overall experience for all employees as they can define when and What. a lot and where they want to work. A mobile platform is essential for Millennial and Gen Z workers in particular, as they expect every aspect of their life to be online, efficient, and personalized to meet their needs.

An intelligent workforce management platform also allows the company to optimize its workforce by sharing employees across multiple locations. This not only provides the company with additional workers who know the inner workings of company procedures, but also gives workers the ability to work additional shifts that were not previously available to them.

Supply Chain Disruption Mitigation

Even now, more than two years after the pandemic began, supply chain disruptions continue to be a sore spot across industries, as companies catch up to meet demand for items, causing delays. and raise prices. While current employment trends are not the only cause of the supply chain situation, they have had a significant impact, with industries like manufacturing, transportation, warehousing and utilities seeing high dropout rates last year. Businesses have to do more with fewer resources from both an inventory and employee perspective.

Smart workforce management solutions can help with supply chain uncertainty by enabling distribution centers to operate more efficiently. For example, using AI and ML, companies can analyze thousands of data points that can affect workforce needs (eg, delivery days, weather events, etc.) so they can make decisions better and more informed programming staff. Additionally, create a workforce guide based on demand, labor standards, business policies, and budget constraints to create the optimal work plan. This allows distribution center operators to formulate long-term staffing plans with fixed and flexible hours.

Foster a positive work environment

If there is anything to be learned from the Great Resignation, it is that no company is exempt from the labor shortages and training challenges that present themselves at this time. Rather than sit back and offer the same benefits and wages that workers no longer see value in, companies have taken this time to reflect on what employees really want in a job and from an employer, whether it’s more recognition, higher salary or more flexible hours.

By offering benefits that better align with the wants and needs of employees, organizations are showing that they truly care about their people as more than just numbers. This creates a better culture and future-proofs the business, reducing the chances of employees leaving the company.

Every competitive advantage matters as companies continue to look for new ways to attract and retain hourly employees. AI-powered workforce management is a game changer, giving employers an easy way to optimize their workforce efficiency while also improving their employee experience.

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