Controlling labor force costs must rank as the most challenging aspect of any Chief Nursing Officer’s job. On any given day, how many patient care units go under-staffed, triggering unplanned expenses for overtime or agency nurses? And the issue doesn’t only pertain to nurses. When nursing techs and orderlies are understaffed, nurses pick up the slack, transporting patients and performing other duties below the level of their license. That’s a poor allocation of resources that hits the bottom line hard.
The best way to solve this problem and prevent red ink lies in ditching your old, outdated legacy scheduling system for a modern workforce scheduling solution that allows you to easily create a virtual centralized staffing pool for all your shift-based workers. Yes, “easily.” ShiftWizard scheduling software enables you to implement an internal float pool with no hassle – but plenty of cost savings.
Healthcare Scheduling Software that Works
How many nurses love your current employee scheduling software? Is it a resounding “none”?
Legacy scheduling systems frequently fail to meet the needs of modern hospitals because, all too often, those old systems evolved as an offshoot of some other software program the hospital used. Since those scheduling systems were tacked on as an afterthought, they simply don’t work well. They were not designed by nurses, for nurses. No, those generic systems likely were created by a coder with no healthcare-specific scheduling knowledge or experience at all. That’s why legacy systems almost never meet the needs of nurse managers, CNOs or nurses. They don’t solve the real-life problems managers face every day – such as quickly locating a nurse to float to an understaffed department – because they weren’t designed to.
“Before, I would have to call all ten charge nurses, each one would have to look at their schedule and then get back to me,” said Jennifer Lampert, Assistant Director of Nursing at Deaconess Health System in Indiana, illustrating the challenges of meeting staffing demands using an outmoded legacy system.
Conversely, ShiftWizard’s enterprise view eliminates the need to phone multiple departments to check on staffing and instead gives nurse managers instant access to the decision-making data they need. The system can tell managers which departments need additional staffing – nurses, techs or any shift-based workers – and display a list of only those staff members who have the proper credentials and schedule availability to take a shift in the understaffed department. With another couple of clicks, each of those employees can receive an automated text message or phone call offering the shift, and they can decline or accept right from their smartphone, using ShiftWizard’s employee scheduling app. What could be simpler?
Real Labor Cost Savings, Not Hypothetical Numbers
How much can your facility save by using ShiftWizard to create a virtual centralized staffing pool?
Hypothetically speaking, the median wage for a Registered Nurse runs around $34 per hour, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. That means every hour worked at time-and-a-half due to imprecise scheduling costs your facility $51 per hour. Or, if you have to call in an agency nurse, you may wind up paying around $46 per hour, according to salaries reported at Glassdoor. Using these figures, you hypothetically could save $12 to $17 per hour on labor costs by using ShiftWizard to float one of your staff nurses instead of paying overtime or resorting to agency nurses.
But we don’t have to talk hypothetical numbers.
WakeMed Health and Hospitals of the greater Raleigh, North Carolina, area implemented ShiftWizard scheduling software and reported an immediate reduction in nurse overtime. Over the first seven months of implementation, the health system saved $2,200 per bed in overtime costs. Those are real numbers – and real dollars.
“The ability to have centralized oversight and communication across multiple departments, locations and facilities is very important, and the ShiftWizard interface provides us with that ability,” said Cindy Boily, WakeMed’s SVP and Chief Nursing Officer.
Yes, ShiftWizard gives you the ability to create virtualized staffing pools across multiple locations. No more unwieldy spreadsheets and tedious phone calls. When you need a nurse, tech or even non-clinical staff like a pipefitter or electrician, you can easily contact any or all available, qualified staff with a few clicks.
Use a Virtual Centralized Staffing Pool to Stop Wrecking the Budget
It’s time to replace your outdated, non-functional legacy scheduling system with a best-in-class solution that nurses love. ShiftWizard makes it easy to save overtime and agency nurse costs, and because it’s a workforce scheduling system built by nurses, for nurses from the ground up, managers and staff alike rave about how much they love it.
Schedule a complimentary demo to find out for yourself how ShiftWizard can stop you from wrecking the budget each month. (And silence the complaining about your legacy scheduling system, too!)