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How to Fix Your Labor Pool Problems

By Daniel Barbieri on Mar 3, 2021 11:00:00 AM

So you’re new to on-demand labor, and you end up hitting a roadblock that you weren’t expecting. You’re excited about the potential of Veryable for your business, but aren’t so sure any more. What now?

If you’re reading this, know that you aren’t alone in facing challenges implementing on-demand labor and building a labor pool. Companies face challenges often enough that we wrote this article about them!

In this article, you’ll learn the steps you need to take to fix each of these common challenges so your labor pool can meet the needs of your business.

 

Common Challenges When Building a Labor Pool

  • Low number of bids on your Ops
  • Poor attendance rates for your Ops
  • Difficulty organizing and managing your labor pool

 

How to fix a low number of bids on your Ops

If you aren’t getting many bids on your Ops, there are a few ways to fix this. You can post more one or two day Ops, increase the pay offered, shorten the work hours, be more detailed in your description, or post piecework Ops.

 

Post more one-day or two-day Ops

When you post shorter duration Ops, you give more Operators the chance to bid on them. This is because you cast a wider net. Our data shows that Ops shorter than eight days in duration have the highest attendance rate. This makes sense because it aligns more closely with the intended use of Veryable, which is matching the labor to the work in real-time.

For example, if you plan to post Ops for Monday through Friday, instead of posting that as one continuous Op that someone must commit to for the entire week, you should post that as multiple one-day Ops. This would give the chance for someone who was busy on Wednesday to bid on Thursday and Friday, whereas if the Op you posted was for the whole week, they wouldn’t have been able to bid on any days.

 

Increase the pay offered

Workers want more pay the same way gravity pulls things to the ground. It’s just a fact of life. In a marketplace like Veryable, workers have many options for where they work, so the amount of pay offered can be a deciding factor in how many Operators will bid on your Op.

 

Shorten the work hours of each Op

When you shorten the work hours of each Op, you are breaking up the work across more Operators. This will allow you to bring in more Operators each day while accomplishing the same amount of work you needed done. This builds your labor pool faster by introducing you to more workers who you might want to add.

 

Add detail to the description

Sometimes the description of an Op can cause less people to bid on it. If there is not enough information, the Operator doesn’t know what they’re committing to. Most Operators want to be sure they’ll do the work correctly and don’t want to commit to something that isn’t going to be a good fit. You can help them do this by clearly explaining what the Operator will be doing in your facility, for how long, where to show up, and what they need to bring to be successful.

 

Post piecework Ops

Piecework is another way of paying Operators that is based on how much work they get done. Unlike hourly pay, piecework incentivizes productivity because the worker will be paid for each unit of work instead of based on how long they stay there.

This means a worker can finish more and be paid more, or they can finish a set amount faster and go home sooner. And it benefits your business because the labor cost per unit stays the same, so you won’t end up paying for unproductive time.

 

How to fix poor attendance rates for your Ops

If you’re getting plenty of bids and accepting Operators but they aren’t showing up as often as they should, there are steps you can take to increase the attendance rate for your Ops. These are a couple of the same tips we give for increasing bids on your Ops, because oftentimes trouble building a labor pool is an indication that these things are not being done.

Posting shorter Ops (1-2 days) will help you cycle through Operators more quickly, allowing you to identify reliable Operators faster and build your labor pool more quickly. Workers in your labor pool are more likely to attend an Op, so make building your labor pool a priority. Do this by bringing in new Operators and identifying the top performers for your business to add to your labor pool.

Increasing the pay offered for the Op is another way to improve attendance. Our data shows that the Op pay offered is positively related to attendance, meaning that the more you offer, the more likely the accepted Operators are to attend. Imagine an Operator deciding between attending a concert they won tickets to and getting paid below market value for a 10-hour weekend Op...that decision would be much harder if the Op pay were competitive.

 

How to solve difficulties organizing and managing your labor pool

If your labor pool is growing and you’re having trouble keeping everything in order, there are a few tools Veryable provides to help guide you through this. In your business portal, you can use tags to organize the list of Operators in your labor pool, create Op templates, use autofill, conduct bulk adjustments, and create work areas delegated to each site you manage to run your labor pool smoothly and efficiently.

 

Use tags to organize the list of Operators in your labor pool

In your business portal, you can apply tags to each Operator in your labor pool to keep everything organized. This function can be found in the Ops tab, on a button labeled “YLP tags.” This brings up a menu with color-coded tags that can be applied to anyone you’ve added to your labor pool.

For example, if you need to keep track of who has been trained on a specific machine, you could create a tag to denote that an Operator is proficient with that machine and then apply that tag to Operators in your labor pool as you train them. This would allow you to see quickly how many Operators you have with skills on that particular machine in your facility. Then when you invited Operators from your labor pool next, it would be easier to find exactly who you were looking for because of the tags.

 

Create Op templates

When you find yourself posting an Op with the same details over and over, you know it’s time to create an Op template. That way, you can start each Op posting for that particular task with a base that’s already mostly completed. Then you can just customize it quickly before posting. This will save you time when you’re posting for a large number of Ops.

 

Use autofill

If you do not want to manually select Operators for each Op, you can save time by using autofill. This feature automatically selects Operators based on an advanced algorithm designed to help you fill Ops effectively.

Autofill can instantly select and confirm Operators who meet your criteria, which we’ve found to boost attendance rates because it removes the delay between an Operator’s bid and their acceptance for the Op.

You can also set parameters on autofill to find the perfect balance between manual and automated selection. For example, if you know you do not want anyone with a rating below three stars for an Op, you can set autofill to only select Operators with a three-star rating or higher. 

If you don’t want to instantly approve people based on autofill, you can let autofill rank the bids from Operators who meet your criteria so that you have a shortlist to select from.

 

Conduct bulk adjustments

If you need to make adjustments to many Ops at once after the Op day has passed, you can upload a spreadsheet file to make bulk adjustments. This can save you time when you need to make many changes at once.

 

Create work areas for organizing the labor pool inside your building

You can create work areas inside the Veryable business portal to represent areas of the building you want to put Operators in. This will make it easier to stay organized while finding workers for specific tasks and see where you could add more support at a glance.

 

Building a labor pool that actually works

You’re probably using the platform at a more advanced level if you’ve read this far. Even so, it never hurts to review the basics and remember the goals in front of you when using on-demand labor. 

Review our blog on how to build a labor pool to freshen up on the basics of building your labor pool, and when you’re ready to start applying these practices, log into your business portal.

Daniel Barbieri

Written by Daniel Barbieri

Regional Operations Coordinator Lead