Operations Nightmare: Days Off in Union Workplaces

Rob Snyder
February 12, 2019

      Call-outs, extra shifts, and volatile staffing needs make any manager’s life difficult. For managers in union workplaces, it’s nearly impossible: Workers have more vacation and sick hours (often 25+ per year)… and there are complex requirements for filling the open shift in your CBA. These requirements take precious time. In one workplace we visited, a manager had to cross-check:

  1. The schedule
  2. The seniority list
  3. The year-to-date overtime list (always outdated)
  4. The contact list

She’d then have to determine the correct order, write that order down, and only then start making calls… twenty minutes later.


What actually happens

For a manager who just found out she has a call-out for a shift that starts in a few hours, it’s often easiest to call the worker she hopes is available, instead of following the CBA.

Here’s how it goes: She calls employee number one in her phone— but that employee can’t work. So she calls another. And another. Twenty minutes later, she’s filled the shift, calling every employee whose contact information she has in her cell phone.

So the shift is covered! But, it’s overtime. Your workplace has part-timers too, and your manager didn’t call them.

Then, a grievance gets filed by a part-timer. The cost—in manager time, unnecessary overtime, payouts, and lost workplace productivity—balloons.  By the way, see our list of 14 different avoidable costs incurred when union workers take days off.


Automate the pain away

What you need is an “easy” button: and an automated system that texts and calls your workforce to fill shifts, according to the CBA.

SYRG is that “easy” button. Want to learn more? Contact us at info@syrg.app.

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