Posts Tagged ‘overtime’

Overtime Coverage on 8s vs 12s

July 21st, 2009

A big source of concern for managers and employees when entertaining the idea of 12-hr schedules is the question of how absentee shifts will be covered in both systems.

Coverage on 8-hr schedules normally means that a person from the previos shift has to stay 4 hours beyond their 8-hr shift and a person from the following shift has to come in 4 hours early. Together the two people cover the 8 hours left uncovered by the absence. Both people were already schedule to be at work that day anyway.

The image below shows an example of a typical 8-hr schedule with 4 crews and 4 people per crew. If employee #5 reports sick on Wednesday and Thursday (red), one employee of the day crew has to stay 4 hours later and one employee from the night crew has to come to work 4 hours early (orange).

Coverage on 8-hr schedules

Coverage on 8-hr schedules

On a 12-hr schedule it is not feasible to work half of another shift to cover for an absent co-worker. Instead someone from a crew that was scheduled to be off work that day has to fill the shift.

Coverage on a 12-hr schedule

Coverage on a 12-hr schedule

As shown in the example above only one person has to work the absent shift on Wednesday and Thursday. In the example 3 employees from the day crew keep their day off and the 4 people from the night crew were also unaffected by this change.

So how do companies manage this system?

As with any problem, there are various solutions. What we often see with clients is a voluntary sign-up system where employees can make themselves available to work overtime on their scheduled days off.

Some companies develop call-out schedules which then designate which individual is responsible for vacant shifts on any day. Obviously not all off days are scheduled as cover days – only enough to provide coverage for expected levels of absenteeism.

Both systems work and we have seen clients that utilized both systems in different areas of the same plant. Which system can work in your environment depends a lot on your workforce and the managers in charge of the areas.