While nearly every business schedules its workers according to a variety of needs and formulas, those which perform around-the-clock shift work such as manufacturing, shipping, or mining employ personnel schedulers. This is a specialized supervisor, typically in a company's production or logistics department, who is responsible for ensuring that all of a shift's positions are filled with trained personnel. He/she will typically work with other departments to forecast work volume, staff availability, and hiring/recruitment needs, as well.
The primary duty of the personnel scheduler is to ensure that each shift is staffed properly, as failure to do so can be incredibly costly to manufacturers, shippers, and raw materials producers. He/she will generally use computers to analyze a variety of factors regarding business volume to determine expected staffing requirements, and then fill shifts with available personnel and ensure that backups and contingency personnel are available if needed. All scheduling must conform to any labor cost budgeting constraints, as well.
A personnel scheduler will also examine existing and future staffing needs and work with department and team leaders to assess future shift position requirements. The scheduler will then work with HR or recruiters to ensure that positions are filled and new employees are trained with enough time to spare. They must also take into account a variety of employee views regarding benefits such as vacations, personal days, sick days, and the like. In union operations, the scheduler must be acutely aware of, and adhere to, scheduling requirements in the collective bargaining agreement.
To work as a personnel scheduler, a person should typically have at least some secondary education, and many employers prefer applicants with associate's degrees or higher in business human resources or logistics. A personnel scheduler generally works traditional weekly business hours and must be proficient in computers and office software; excellent communication skills are also necessary.
Personnel Scheduler Tasks
Prepare and maintain employment records.
Assist in contacting applicants to inform them of employment possibilities, consideration, and selection.
Assist department in the process of filling existing and future job openings.
Request information from previous employers and other references to determine applicants' employment acceptability.