Rotating Shift Schedule | 5 mins read

How a Rotating Shift Schedule Improves Employee Productivity

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Lauren Christiansen

By Lauren Christiansen

Benefits of a Rotating Shift Schedule

A rotating shift schedule is a type of employee work schedule in which team members alternate between the day shift and night shift. This switch occurs after one or two weeks, depending on business and employee needs. For example, an employee may work night shifts for seven days and then switch to morning shifts the following week.

Healthcare, hospitality, the military, and other labor-intensive industries are more likely to use a rotation shift. A rotation schedule varies, depending on the method a supervisor chooses. The easiest method is to break a 16-hour schedule into two eight-hour shifts. For example, a diner may schedule a team from 8-4 p.m. and schedule another team for the 4-12 p.m. night shift. During the following week, the teams switch shifts with each other.

A rotating schedule ensures that team members cover all work shifts throughout the work week. While shift rotation can wreak havoc on employees' circadian rhythms and sleep cycles, rotating schedules also come with benefits. Read ahead to learn why so many businesses utilize this type of employee scheduling to streamline operations.

1. Rotating Shift Opens New Learning Opportunities

Employees may work the same two days each week, all morning shifts, or on a fixed schedule of 35 hours per week. While a set schedule provides a sense of stability, it's also a way to become pigeonholed. It's good to schedule employees outside of their comfort zone so they learn more about how the business operates.

As a result, an organization will have a more informed workforce, which leads to an increase in productivity. This type of shift work is also an opportunity for everyone to work busier hours and earn more money. This minimizes any discord between team members and improves workplace collaboration.

  • 68% of employees want to learn or train in the workplace
  • 58% of workers prefer to learn at their own pace
  • 49% of employees want to undergo training only when its necessary
  • 75% of employees embark on a learning course when it is recommeded by the manager

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2. Rotating Shift Schedule Improves Engagement

A lack of engagement is a huge problem in the United States. With up to 70% of employees disengaged at work, there's a serious problem. Employees claim to feel disengaged because of poor communication, a lack of opportunity, and an inflexible schedule. Rotation shift schedules may be one way to solve this problem.

Regular shift changes keep employees on their toes. Team members know they will work busier and slower shifts. At the same time, rotating schedules don't change every day and don't impact last-minute plans. Employees have a better work-life balance but can still look forward to new opportunities at work. This type of schedule shift improves morale, decreases the turnover rate, and increases productivity levels.

3. Rotating Shift Schedule Provides Ample Training Time

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With high labor costs and limited time, the onboarding process is a challenge. It's hard to train a worker for one week when there are 10 different tasks to manage. Moreover, the new hire doesn't receive the ample experience required to handle busier times. This is particularly true for the restaurant industry, where different shifts are busier and slower.

Rotating schedules enable supervisors to train new hires and not cut into the evening-hour shift. Supervisors can establish a training meeting first thing in the morning. One team can train one week, and the next team can train the following week.

In other words, there is much more flexibility and time to complete onboarding. Furthermore, supervisors have more time to complete tasks and new hires gain a better experience. As a result, there is less of an impact on operations.

  • 68% of employees say training and development is a company's most important policy
  • 74% of employees claim to not be reaching their full potential due to poor training
  • 76% of workers are looking for career growth opportunities
  • 40% of poorly-trained employees leave the company within the first year

4. Rotating Shifts Improve Work-Life Balance

Some employees prefer to work long hours but still have a 3-day weekend to spend with friends and family. In many organizations, rotating shift workers receive a full week off each month. Other employees enjoy working night shifts so they can spend time with their family during the day, though this does wreak havoc on sleep.

Despite the mental health problems and the impact on sleep patterns, many employees still prefer rotating schedules. Organizations should speak with rotation shift workers regularly to ensure they receive adequate rest. This is imperative to avoid workplace injury, depression, and burnout.

Online employee scheduling software that makes shift planning effortless.
Try it free for 14 days.

5. Rotating Shifts Improve Productivity

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In a rotation schedule, team members get to know one. They collaborate more effectively, build better relationships, and take turns to complete undesirable shifts. Because a lack of communication and collaboration hurts morale, this increase is good for businesses.

Furthermore, the company will cover early morning shifts, night shifts, and areas of operations. Supervisors won't need to worry as much about absenteeism or no-calls no-shows. There is plenty of time off, so employees won't feel as stressed out and disgruntled. Remember, happy employees are more productive and more efficient. There will also be a lower turnover rate, which saves money. Customers will be happier with the quality of service they receive, which further increases profits.

  • Employees spend an average of 31 hours per month in meetings. Simultaneously, workers believe meetings are one of the biggest time wasting activities
  • Employees are 45% more likely to be distracted during the summer months
  • One million workers miss work each day due to stress
  • Telecommuters are 14% more productive than office-bound employees

Key Takeaways of Rotating Shift Schedule

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In conclusion, here are the benefits of rotating shift schedules -

  • Employees have new learning opportunities in a rotating shift schedule. They can work peak hours, slow hours, evening shifts, and day shifts. This increases worker experience and boosts customer service.
  • Employees are more engaged with a rotating schedule. A flexible schedule provides ample opportunity to take vacations and spend time with friends and family. This improves morale and decreases the turnover rate.
  • Rotating shift schedules provide ample opportunity for employee training. Supervisors have more time to complete important tasks. Furthermore, workers will have a better work-life balance.
  • Rotating schedules increase productivity. Because employees have a more flexible schedule and are more engaged, they will be happier. Happier employees are more productive. This will also improve customer service and help to increase profits.

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