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There's a lot that entrepreneurs have to handle, isn't there? When starting off, their days are filled with countless tasks, each of them demanding utmost attention. It's natural to get overwhelmed and overworked. And there's always the stress of missing something out at the back of your mind. A weekly scheduling template will undoubtedly make things easier.

If you take a moment to analyze all that you have to do, you will notice many repetitive tasks in your schedule. Is there a way to streamline the process? Can you remove some of the unnecessary errands from your plan? You wouldn't know until you sit down to prepare a weekly scheduling template.

"A schedule defends from chaos and whim. A net for catching days."- Annie Dillard

Managers are no strangers to templates. Indeed, they use one now and then to order supplies, prepare invoices, and so on. When you rely on templates for most of your work, why not use the same approach to organize the rest of your weekly schedule?

Using a weekly scheduling template will be more beneficial than you realize. For one thing, it will reduce the time you have to spend on getting things ready before even commencing scheduling. You won't have to spend a significant amount of time remaking the form since the template is there for it.

You can simply open the document, fill in the information, and your work is done. Your schedule for the week will be prepared in no time, enabling you to be optimally productive and efficient.

How To Prepare Your Weekly Scheduling Template

Think about it. What's the purpose of this scheduling template? To make things easier for you! Therefore, one of the most important things you have to ensure is to keep your schedule simple.

You don't have to cram every detail related to a task in your schedule. No one will have the time to decipher all the data. The purpose of the schedule is to give everyone instant information about what needs to be done and when. So ensure that your scheduling template isn't overcrowded with the details.

Now the question is, what needs to be included in the template. Yes, it should be easy to read, but what details can you absolutely not miss out on? The template must include

  • Date
  • Day of the week
  • Employee name
  • Total office hours
  • Job, the employee, is expected to perform

In some companies, employees are fixed on one job and don't get rotated too often. If that's the case, you can skip this information in the weekly scheduling template.

You can further simplify the scheduling template by using small pictures of employees or color-coding them. You can also format the schedule as a table. It's up to you to determine how you want to go about it.

Creating The Weekly Scheduling Template

Now that you know how the scheduling template should look like, it's time to create one. Microsoft Excel is an excellent place to get started. It's pretty flexible, and you can set it up as you prefer. Yes, it might take you a relatively long time to create a template suited to your need. But this is a one-time effort. Once your template is ready, you won't have to spend so long on scheduling in the future.

Apart from Microsoft Excel, you have many other options to create your template. If you are using excel, here are the steps you have to follow to prepare your weekly scheduling template.

  • Get an account on Microsoft and download a template.
  • Now open this template with your copy of excel. Typically, the template will already have sections of employee names, work times, and jobs.
  • Click on the name cell and enter the name of your employee, repeating this process for your entire team.
  • You can add or delete rows as per your requirement by right-clicking on the row.
  • Once done, select the cells and copy them. Paste these names on the other days of the week too.
  • Save the document.
  • You can enter a range of times in the template until the business closing time to make it easier for everyone to determine the timelines they have to follow.
  • Go through the column of job and enter the responsibility each employee has to fulfill.
  • Make sure to enter the date range for the schedule
  • Print and distribute it to your entire team

That's it! Your work is done! Your weekly scheduling template is now ready. You simply have to give it a brief overview at the beginning of the week and rest easy.

Tips For Creating An Effective Scheduling Template

It's common for managers to find it challenging to manage the scheduling. However, if you are careful during the preparation time, you can evade a lot of problems. Here are some tips.

Understand Your Employees' Needs

Read the weekly scheduling template from the employees' perspective. Are you able to understand it easily? Do you think the employees might have some questions about the schedule?

If the schedule template is simple and straightforward, there's little chance of error, and your team won't be confused about what they are supposed to do.

Analyze Your Business Needs

It's not only the employees that have to be kept in mind while preparing the scheduling template. You have to focus on your business requirements too. Examine the schedule to figure out if the scheduling limits the need for overtime. Will it be challenging for you to translate this schedule into a report for payroll?

By considering these factors, you can ensure that you don't overwork your team and also keep tabs on their weekly activities.

Your Availability Matters

Of course, your work wouldn't be completed merely by filling in the template. Your employees might have some requests to make for the schedule. You have to give them this time to approach you before finalizing the scheduling.

You have to decide when to post the schedule and how to ensure that everyone sees them. And then give the team some deadline during which they can approach you with their request for changes.

Ensure Workforce Optimization At All Times

This is where your experience will come in handy. You have to predict how many team members you will need on board at all times.

Keep in mind that there are times when many of your staff members might not be available due to emergencies. How will you manage the schedule at such times? Advanced planning will save you from last-minute hassles. Keep backups in mind if some staff member calls in sick to ensure that work isn't compromised.

At the same time, also figure out who will be your best employees for each shift. It's these efficient employees who will ensure that everything goes on smoothly when they are on deck.

Give Sufficient Time Offs

Keep in mind that your employees won't be able to perform their best if they are overworked. Therefore, they need to be given adequate time to breathe and have a break.  Work-life balance is vital, too, so keep this in mind while preparing the template.

Don't forget to monitor the total hours worked by each employee during the week and if they have been on the job overtime.

These numbers will tell you how you can control overtime and keep labor costs in check too. Monitoring this will also make it easier for you to manage payrolls.

Get Organized

Sometimes, managers fail to keep things organized even when a template is ready. Needless to say, everything ends up haphazard due to this approach, and efficiency is compromised.

So decide on who to schedule when based on your organizational strategy. You have to assign responsibilities based on your employees' skills and your business needs. Focus on your goals and figure out how your scheduling can help the company meet its objectives. The shifts shouldn't be assigned randomly. You have to consider all the relevant factors if you want your team to abide by the schedule.

It's Time To Prepare Your Weekly Scheduling Template!

Managing a business is definitely not easy. There's a lot going on. At such times, you have to ensure that there are no unforeseen hindrances. A weekly scheduling template enables you to be prepared in advance. It also makes it easier for you to determine how to use your workforce most effectively.

So don't waste time preparing a schedule daily. Create a weekly template and save valuable time. This will increase your company's productivity and also make things easier for everyone.