photo of small wooden people to illustrate how to reduce overstaffing

The workplace is undergoing rapid changes, but there’s one constant you can count on: staffing will always be an ongoing challenge. Achieving the right balance of too few or too many employees is often the trickiest part of that challenge. In this article, we’ll discuss three ways you can schedule your employees to reduce overstaffing.

How Can You Reduce Overstaffing?

Staggered Scheduling

Most companies adopt a conventional strategy of a set of normal hours that all employees work within. If business is booming and you find yourself with an influx of new employees to handle the boom, consider staggered scheduling.

Have your new hires start earlier or later by an hour or more. This gives you a large window with everyone on deck for meetings and such. You’ll also have staggered lunch shifts, so someone’s always available.

A variation to this is concentrated shifts. In this variation, employees work longer hours over fewer days. Example: ten-hour days Monday through Thursday with an extra day off each week. You could have some work Monday through Thursday and others work Tuesday through Friday.

If your company is open 7 days a week, the ability to stagger concentrated shifts even more will ensure you’re not overstaffed.

Reward with Time or Money

If your business experiences infrequent upticks in workload, it might not make sense to hire on new employees. Instead, you can offer overtime for your employees to take care of the extra work.

Conversely, you can give employees to leave early. While they wouldn’t be paid for the hours they didn’t work, many would enjoy the extra time with their families and the ability to run errands they usually save for the weekend.

Hire Temps

A popular trend to handle fluctuating staffing needs is to hire temp-to-hire workers. When you work with a top recruiting firm like ICR, you get skilled recruiters who will place high-quality candidates according to your needs.

One significant benefit of temp workers is that they expect to be laid off. Whether you experience a regular seasonal surge or your business is booming and you’re not sure how many more employees you will need, temp workers is the perfect strategy to keep from over-hiring.

It’s also a great way to try out potential permanent employees with none of the commitment of the traditional hiring process.

Bonus Tip: Be Creative

These are just a few baseline tips to get your brain storming. Once you understand these concepts, you can mix and match or invent entirely new strategies to handle your staffing needs.

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