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Knowledge Management for Designing Work Schedules for Optimal Productivity

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Knowledge Management for Designing Work Schedules for Optimal Productivity

Dec 05, 2022   |  By
KMI Guest Blogger Amanda Winstead

A comprehensive knowledge management system can unlock new levels in your business. If you’re unfamiliar with knowledge management, it’s a system that helps you collect, store, organize, and share knowledge and information across your company.

That information includes human resources (HR) data. Collecting information about your employees and their lifecycle within your company can do wonders for maximizing productivity and engagement.

The way you create work schedules, in particular, can be much more effective with the help of a knowledge management platform.

Why Knowledge Management Is Critical for Creating Schedules

Flexible work schedules are growing in popularity. In fact, “when people have the chance to work flexibly, 87 percent of them take it,” according to Mckinsey & Company.

But it’s much more complex to create flexible schedules than most realize, especially if the information you have about your employees is bare or inaccurate. A knowledge management platform helps you collect and organize the data you need to create flexible schedules more efficiently.

For example, long commutes can be harmful to an employee’s health. The unpredictability of commuting can be incredibly stressful and anxiety-provoking, resulting in unhealthy behaviors like grabbing fast food for breakfast to beat traffic or negative self-talk all the way to work.

You can document how long each employee’s commute is with knowledge management. And then, use this information to determine which employees should work from home or which can come in a little later to avoid long, stressful commutes.

Or, let’s say a few of your employees do their best work in the morning while others do their best work late at night. Making notes about this in your knowledge management system enables you to create schedules accommodating both types of employees.

With access to the most relevant employee information, you can make better-informed decisions about work schedules and inspire optimal productivity.

Data to Collect to Design Work Schedules for Optimal Productivity

To design work schedules for maximum productivity, you must use the information in your knowledge management system properly.

But first, it’s essential to collect accurate data about your employees that will help you understand each of their unique needs, strengths, and preferences. Start with the data below.

When your employees do their best work

Employees love flexible schedules because they can design them to fit according to their preferences and their lifestyle. Instead of forcing your employees to adhere to a schedule that doesn’t inspire their best work, you can design one that does. 

For example, let’s say one of your employees has insomnia and catches up on sleep during the day. Expecting them to come to work at 7 am with their best foot forward isn’t realistic. They’ll likely experience brain fog that disrupts their concentration, focus, and ability to perform.

If you ask them when they do their best work and their preferred hours, you’ll find out that they prefer to work at night and can do their best work then. Armed with that information, you can design a schedule that helps them avoid brain fog and produce high-quality work.

So, ask each employee their preferred work hours and when they think they do their best work and record it in your knowledge management platform.

Family obligations and outside responsibilities

Even though a good work-life balance has been proven to inspire engagement, enthusiasm, and dedication in one’s job, many employers neglect to ensure their employees can take advantage of it.

Optimal productivity is on the other side of ensuring your employees have a full life outside of work. Designing a schedule that accommodates this need is integral. You can do this by collecting information about your employee’s family obligations and outside responsibilities.

Makes notes about the following for each employee and consider them when creating schedules:

●      If an employee is married

●      If they go to school or have a second job

●      If they’re caring for a sick or disabled loved one

●      What are their outside interests and passions are

●      Whether an employee is pregnant or has children

You can collect this information in a variety of ways, but if your main focus is convenience, you can gather this information through knowledge management software.

Work duties

As much as you may want to offer your employees flexible scheduling options, it may not be possible after considering their position, accompanying responsibilities, and company needs.

Collect and continuously update information about each employee’s role and responsibilities in your knowledge management system. Also, make notes about organizational needs and what you need from an employee schedule-wise to accommodate them. The more information you collect, the more comprehensive you can be in your optimal working conditions plan.

How To Bring it All Together

How can you use the data above to design the best work schedules for your employees? Well, first, review everything that you’ve learned about your employees. Lay it out so that you can see how each person’s preferred schedule could potentially work together.

After that, start plugging in hours on your scheduling software. Make sure that all the hours you need to be covered are covered. Account for the tasks and responsibilities that need to be done that week as well.

Get a second pair of eyes on the schedule to ensure everything looks good. You could even run it by your employees to get their feedback. Then, finalize the schedule when you’re comfortable.

It’s also essential to ensure everyone understands the ground rules of their flexible schedules. For example, are they expected to come into the office on specific days? Do they need to be available during specific hours? How are they to record their hours? What’s the plan to ensure they’re getting their tasks done to the highest quality?

Lastly, if you can’t accommodate someone’s preferred schedule, sit down with them, explain why, and work with them to develop a suitable alternative.

Conclusion

Work schedules have an undeniable impact on how well your employees perform. A knowledge management platform can help you design flexible work schedules that fit each employee and capitalize on their strengths. Collect the data above in your knowledge management solution and bring it all together to design work schedules that prompt maximum productivity.

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