Manage employee availability and requests

Updated Feb 13, 2021

In many restaurants, retail businesses, and other industries, staff members are required to work with two different concepts for work preferences:

  • Availability is when employees are normally available to work.
  • For example, an employee may be available on Monday, Wednesday, or Friday from 8am – 2pm. Perhaps that employee is not available to work on Tuesdays or Thursdays because of school conflicts, or another job. Availability is commonly updated on a continuous basis (school semesters are common), and are filled out by staff members.
  • Requests are normally one-time changes to your employees' normal availability.
  • For example, an employee may be available next Tuesday to work because their professor canceled class. In many businesses, requests are placed in some sort of log book – either an industry specific manager log (such as a Red Book from Red Book Solutions or a Beat Yesterday book) or a simple spiral notebook or binder.

TimeForge supports both types of work preferences from a single Availability & Requests page. Recurring requests can be be made within TimeForge, similar to an Availability sheet, and individual daily Requests can also be made within TimeForge.

From the Location level, open the Employees tab, then select Availability & Requests from the sub-menu.

The Availability and Requests page

Overview

TimeForge supports 4 different types of Availability and Requests to enable staff members to easily customize their work schedule. These are color-coded in TimeForge to make them easier to identify visually:

  1. Wants to work (green)- If an employee would like to work a particular shift, for example on a day that works well with their schedule, they should create a Wants to work request.
  2. Available to work (gray) - By default, employees are always available to work, and can be scheduled to work. They should create either Wants to work, Does not want to work, or Unavailable to work requests to change their availability.
  3. Does not want to work (yellow) - These requests indicate that the employee would prefer to not work, but can work if required.
  4. Unavailable to work (red) - If an employee cannot work, an Unavailable to work request will ensure that they are not placed on the schedule during this time frame.

Staff requests and changes to availability are sent to the management team for approval, and once approved the employee will be notified through TimeForge and by email (if an email account is set up).

Submitting, Editing, and Preventing/Enabling Requests

  1. Use the dropdown menu to select a different employee or the date picker to select a different date.
  2. Click the date at the top of the column to create a new request for that day.
  3. Click the "Edit" link to edit an existing request.
  4. Click the "Do Not Allow Requests" link to prevent requests for that date (the column will then appear in dark gray) or re-enable requests by clicking the "Allow Requests" link.
  5. Use the Previous and Next buttons to cycle between weeks.
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