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Feb 23, 2024

7 Secrets for Success: Scaling TeamSense From One Manufacturing Site to Many

Learn best practices and strategies for extending the use of TeamSense from your company’s first site, to your second, to your twentieth. This webinar recap blog post summarizes the most frequent deployment and onboarding questions we hear from customers and tips and tricks for getting the whole team onboard for a smooth rollout.

Fix the root cause of No-Call No-Show with TeamSense Book a Demo

Fix the root cause of No-Call No-Show with TeamSense

Book a Demo

In November, I joined Shannon Lambert for a webinar to share what I’ve learned from our customers as they adopted TeamSense at their first manufacturing or logistics site and then expanded from there. Of course, each of those journeys was different, but they shared some common traits. Together, we have learned several best practices that any prospective or current TeamSense partner should use to standardize employee call-offs on TeamSense and modernize their attendance management operations.

If you want to pop some popcorn and snuggle up for some binge-watching, here’s the entire replay of my conversation with Shannon last November.

For those in a rush, here’s the a la carte menu of seven secrets for success while scaling TeamSense to new sites.

Secret #1: Do a “Big Bang” Rollout Instead of Site-by-Site

As a best practice, we recommend bringing multiple sites online at the same time. There are three main reasons for this.

First, sites will feel a sense of mutual support and collaboration. This makes the launch of TeamSense feel like a shared company initiative. By pooling resources and ideas, around an aligned strategy, you get more productive deployment and onboarding workflow.

Secondly, a combined rollout improves the depth, accuracy and usefulness of the company’s absence data. The company gets better insight into day to day operations with data from multiple sites and regions than from just one. They can compare absenteeism trends in one site to another. They can do a before/after comparison to assess the impact of HR programs. They can look for “hot spots” of absenteeism or “sweet spots” with perfect attendance.

And third, as data accumulates in a company’s instance of TeamSense, it will become an ever-improving strategic asset for GMs and corporate HR leaders to optimize recruiting or engagement and retention programs. To get a macro-level sense of some questions leaders can answer at a company level, check out this webinar where two of our executives reviewed attendance data across all TeamSense customer sites in 2023.

Secret #2: Integrate Your Attendance Points System from the Start

Companies who fully integrate TeamSense with their Human Resources Information System (HRIS) reap the full benefits that come from showing employees their current attendance points balance in the moment they’re thinking about calling off. Those with a compelling reason for calling off will still call off, but many employees in the “I kind of don’t feel like working today” bucket will decide not to call off when they see their points and attendance histories.

Josh Moon did a great job explaining the process of TeamSense/HRIS integration in another webinar. Check it out, if you’ve got an attendance points system and you’re thinking ahead to integration.

The question is when to integrate your attendance points system. Like most things with TeamSense, you’ve got options. If, at the beginning of our journey, a full HRIS integration feels like it might be too much for your team to manage, we can do a light-weight integration with only your points system. Then, employees will be able to immediately access their points balance within TeamSense (even if we’re only connecting to a shared spreadsheet).

What makes up-front points integration a no-brainer? If you’re reading this and you work in HR, ask yourself two important questions. First, how many calls, texts or emails do you get every week from employees asking you for their attendance points balance? Second, what would you and the team be able to do with the time saved if you never ever got another one of those requests? That’s the power of self-service 🙂

Secret #3: Switch from Any Old IVR Call-Off System ASAP

Interactive Voice Response (IVR) is the old-school type of call-off system that uses the phone, with a series of automated prompts, that coax employees to give structured information about their absence. You’ll often hear these referred to as “phone trees”. TeamSense does provide an IVR option, as a courtesy to the 1-5% of employees who don’t want to text.

But most IVR systems are standalone. If you need to call off, IVR is your only option. These systems are clunky to access, because you can only call (and folks don’t like to call anymore). They’re one-size-fits-all-sites, not customized to the unique realities of different locations. Many do not include automatic notifications to managers, so the insight from call-offs in legacy IVR systems will not be available for adjusting present-day staffing gaps. This is a bottleneck that makes that information difficult for HR or managers to access.

This often leads to a very uncomfortable visibility problem. The employee does everything right, follows policy, and calls off with the IVR system. Because the managers don’t see the information immediately, the employee can still get a call or text from the manager asking where they are, or they may even get a no call, no show note. This is not a good employee experience.

Texting off is superior because it’s faster, easier and more accurate. It takes 30 seconds to call off, rather than several minutes.

Companies who launch TeamSense and don’t simultaneously decommission their legacy IVR (or communicate that that old system is going away) risk delay and confusion. They support old IVR habits, when something newer and better is available.

Secret #4: Build a Process to Share Best Practices Across Sites

We know how busy the HR and operations leaders are in the manufacturing and logistics sites we serve. It’s easy to go “heads down” on the day’s work and not take advantage of lessons learned from colleagues at other locations. The TeamSense Customer Success team sees it as our responsibility to make it easier for our customers to share those cross-team learnings.

For example, after I give my best practices recommendation about TeamSense for a particular use case, an experienced site lead from that same company might now the best weekly meeting to share the information with the larger team.

Another huge opportunity for sharing is around data and analytics. One site that has already been using TeamSense can teach another site the best way to find similar insights in their own location’s data.

We find that internal champions are the best spokespeople for other sites who are considering bringing TeamSense to their location.

Secret #5: Share Templates for Team Communication

Most companies come to us first to solve their problems with call-off and fix the resulting drag on their site’s productivity, efficiency and employee engagement. But TeamSense gives our customers a secret superpower. We keep employee phone numbers accurate and up to date. Check out our Communication product page for a quick video of our friend and customer champion Tim Carracher of The AZEK Company explaining how that works.

Communication through TeamSense is really the long tail of future value for our customers. Once our customers have all of the employee contact information loaded and accurate in the system, you have an easy way to communicate with your workforce at scale. Some of those reasons for communication will be shared across multiple sites, such as annual open enrollment for health benefits or rolling out a new attendance policy. Other communication needs will be site specific, such as emergency situations like weather, closures, or other safety issues. They can even respond to you via a custom form or workflow, to confirm that they are safe.

There is one defined process for how to call-off from work at most companies. There are hundreds or thousands of reasons to communicate with employees and each of those broadcast messages, surveys or mobile forms becomes a template that one site can share with another. The second site can start with a successful communication template, improve it or customize it for their site.

Secret #6: Trust Our Customer Success Team as your Onboarding Advisors

We set up weekly implementation syncs with all of our customers who are onboarding. We align on next steps and answer questions as we go. TeamSense is an intuitive, low-code platform, so the admins for a particular site usually come up to speed quickly. Then, we can scale those recurring meetings back. That said, some customers ask to keep those weekly meetings going, even after a year.

Secret #7: Use All the TeamSense Onboarding Resources!

Aside from those weekly meetings with site-level admins, we offer a plethora of materials to help instill confidence in employees at sites that are new to TeamSense. These include:

  • Easily customizable posters and visual announcements (for break rooms or bulletin boards)

  • Zoom/Teams meetings for manager trainings

  • Templates for business cards or stickers, listing the new TeamSense number

  • One-pager guide for managers

  • Special, customized training pieces that customers request. Just ask!

TeamSense is the only attendance solution that reduces absenteeism, but our new customers won’t necessarily achieve that goal just by subscribing to our solution. It’s going to take some work to do it right, but we will be your partners and allies to get there together. Like a new gym membership, TeamSense has the potential to get your absenteeism and no-call no-shows back in shape. You might break a sweat, but we will cheer each other on. Let’s get fit together!

If you’re an existing customer who wants to discuss site expansion or any other strategy we’ve explored, reach out to me anytime at sarah.ervin@teamsense.com.