Welcome to CrewSense! You've been looking for a system that's easy to use and maintain. And while it seems overwhelming at first, we've created this guide to help you know where to start. We always recommend that you set up the system yourself, so that way you know how to change it when things go wrong. Being able to troubleshoot the system starts with knowing it, and that is done by going through the setup process yourself. So often, we get asked 'I've signed up for my trial-- now what?'.
Here's your 'now what' guide!
First, go into the modules under the system settings and turn on what you think you'll use. Things are automatically turned on and with your free trial, you get access to the system wholly as a Pro customer. Your 30 days is all about figuring out what you'll use and what you don't need to see which package is right for you. Use as much as you think you will. We really urge you to use the system to its fullest and to try everything so that you know what you want to pay for. Remember that our pricing is all-inclusive. You can read more about it here.
Next, build your assignments. Think of this as the places you need to fill in your employees. Most Law Enforcement Agencies do this by shift or team. You will also want to create separate assignments for your command staff and support employees who work different shifts and sometimes locations. Remember you will want your assignments to recur daily (or all weekdays for Monday- Friday employees); you will place the work rotation on the employee themselves when you assign them on the CrewScheduler. Set up your minimum staffing levels for the assignments, which will auto-populate the slots that need to be filled for the day. You can always add more slots as you need them. And you can have as many assignments as you need-- not all assignments require the positions to be filled. Remember, you can choose whether or not you wish to show vacant spots.
The idea is to create a view that works best for your department. It's the beauty of the system. Create labels as needed. (Tip: use labels to assign patrol beats or zones, as they often change day to day.) Play with your daily view setup. What is great about CrewSense is how visually appealing our product is. We created it because most users are visual-- they want to see where the staffing deficiencies are from the moment they open up the program.
Next, go in and build your work types and time off classes. Sub-classes are all about tracking and pulling reports or detailed payroll exports, but your work types will be how your hours are calculated. Many errors with hours are due to incorrect work types.
Once all the time-off types have been built, you can place employees off from the CrewScheduler. It's as simple as dragging the employee into the Time Off section of the CrewScheduler and selecting the time off.
From there, add your employees. The easiest way to do this is the template we provide. You can then upload the template and it will add in every user you have. You can then see all their information on the add/edit page. You'll want to assign roles and permissions. Users will be able to pick how they are contacted by the system, and if you need a second method of contact, that is something that is available for a cost. When you add employees using the bulk uploader, their email address will be their user name and their password will be their first initial last name all in lowercase. Create labels as you see fit. Labels are often utilized by law enforcement agencies to show who within a shift is the Sergeant, Corporal, OIC, FTO, or K9. As mentioned above, they are an easy way to assign and track each employee's patrol area (Beat, Zone, etc.) Group your employees together, as those groups can be used across the platform for reports and notifications. Groups are a good way to organize members of certain teams or aspects of the agency such as the members of the SWAT team, Negotiations, Traffic, etc. and can also be displayed each time the person is on the CrewScheduler if you choose.
Next, start scheduling your employees. Fill them into slots, build their rotation. The system is designed with shift work in mind, so we understand the meaning of repetitive scheduling. If you can't find your pattern in the system go to your admin settings click on CrewScheduler / Calendars then Recurrence Rules; from there you can add a new custom rotation. You want to make sure you do this on what we like to call 'the perfect day'. Do it on the first day of their rotation, and put everyone on the schedule, regardless of whether or not they are working. If they are actually off that day, you can always move them after the fact. But, for now, set your days up as if everyone is on their assignments. Remember that if the employee is working rotating shift pattern you will want to start their rotation on day one-- you may have to go into the past to properly schedule a person's rotation.
You may also want to setup color patterns to match your shifts making it easy to quickly see which teams or groups are working any given day using day coloring. You will go to your CrewScheduler on the first day of a rotation pattern and click on the little gear icon that pops up to the right above "employees off". You will indicate the name and color you would like to display and set the pattern to repeat accordingly.
Once you have set this up it will display at the top of each day as well as display the corresponding color in the calendar, making it easy to see which teams are on duty for that day.
Now that you've built all your employees into their shifts, start building your CallBack settings. Manage those Callback lists-- you can make as many lists as you need, keep in mind our CallBack lists can also be used to send notifications. If your system uses an hour based platform, you'll need to contact us to switch your account to such. All lists have rules and ranking that you can edit to match your current list. You can view the logs on all CallBacks that are done here. We even have a candidate method, if that is what your system uses.
Utilize Notes and Activities by clicking on the notebook icon to the right of the CrewScheduler above "Employees Off" You can add notes and activities to an individual day, or place them on recurring pattern.