<img src="https://secure.leadforensics.com/4108.png" alt="" style="display:none;">

Manufacturing - the New Industrial Revolution

For many people manufacturing is still seen as something from the dark and distant past with dirty grease ridden workers glumly punching their clockcards as they file in and out at the start and finish of their shifts. In reality, for most manufacturing industries, nothing could be further from the truth.


Over the past years many have evolved into dynamic powerhouses, with technological advancements transforming them to become something almost unrecognisable from this Lowry-like image. And with this new industrial revolution manufacturing has become an increasingly complex entity, automation is widespread, and processes often require higher skilled personnel. Customer expectations are higher and there is pressure to produce faster, better and for less. 

All of this leads to the irrevocable conclusion that in manufacturing, of all industries, there is a requirement for full understanding, and fact-based management,
of perhaps the most valuable asset, the workforce.  

This means organisations would benefit from better alignment of attendance patterns to that of the true demand instead of a basic flat or incorrect profile, often caused by legacy inflexible shift patterns. Over recent years many manufacturing organisations have managed much required flexibility by using voluntary overtime or external resource, such as agency workers. There may have been a cost benefit to deal with demand this way, but legislation has tried to address this by necessitating like treatment for both core and agency workers. However, using this method often led to a loss of flexibility from the core workforce and a sense of “them & us” being created. Why do we have to be flexible? Just get some more agency guys!  


Using agency staff may still be a useful solution, but could it be better…? 

The implementation of a demand led roster system that enables your core workforce to adapt and adjust to volatility may be an improvement. Dependent on where a business pitched its standard inflexible core employment level meant an underutilisation at some times or perhaps an over reliance on the external third-party labour at others. So, as this external resource has become harder to find in recent times with Brexit, the pandemic and European wars creating a “perfect storm”, it could now be the time to consider the benefits of revised ways of working to get the most from your core people.  

Using Crown’s WFM system you can understand the requirements for attendance to roster efficiently and effectively to get the right people in the right place at the right time. Having spread the load of flexible requirements and having an abundance of useful and actionable data will ensure better workforce management all round, leading to not only improved well-being and better shift planning, but helping with recruitment and retention. And, it delivers added benefits to management teams, operational, financial and HR too, by delivering insights, eliminating human error, and automating day-to-day activities to make them more efficient and effective. 


The modern-day manufacturing workforce may be more multifaceted 

So, whether your core workforce becomes more flexible or not, the likelihood is that it will now have less traditional work structures than it used to, incorporating not only the full time employed workers but also perhaps some agency, other part-timers, more hybrid workers, contractors, freelancers and possibly some short-term project workers. All can be managed within our WFM system, ensuring the interconnectedness of skills, schedules and record keeping for the understanding of costs are maintained. Linking seamlessly alongside all major payroll, HR, and ERP applications we ensure you have a single source of truth for working time data.  


Training and Certification Management 

With a more highly skilled workforce there inevitably must be a deeper responsibility to ongoing training, keeping your people up to date with safety standards and industry best practice. This focus must fit with the more complex structures of your workforce. We can ensure notices for certifications are delivered in a timely manner. Training can be better planned as you have a full view of future presence and skills. Gaps can be highlighted to futureproof product delivery within legal requirements. 

Real time monitoring of attendance hours ensures compliance with working time legislation, prevents fatigue and excessive workloads to individuals, especially those with a specialised, and often underrepresented, skill base – highlighting further training requirements.  


Leave becomes easier 

We can’t provide a magic wand but being in touch with requirements for attendance and having real life data for the actual plans of all your diverse range of workers means that you can avoid any scheduling conflicts with clearly communicated policies, ensuring health & safety obligations are met and confusion avoided. All in all, this improved and open leave management, with employee self-service, will lead to a more content workforce, fitting the business prerequisites and enhanced productivity.  

Alongside this, sickness, lateness, and other absence can be fully monitored, understood, and actioned appropriately – ensuring problems are dealt with before they are out of control and impacting not only on those involved but to the wider team as well.  



What makes Crown different? 

Crown provides user friendly and scalable time & resource management solutions that are fully configurable, so it works for all businesses, especially in manufacturing, meeting the needs of the company, its managers, and its employees. It works via our secure cloud, or on a traditional on-site platform with identification processes suitable for any environment whether using proximity badges, facial recognition, or fingerprint and for more geographical widespread workforces with telephony, tablets, and mobile phones. The prerequisite and fundamental design requirements for a good WFM system in the manufacturing environment are to: 

  1. Enable effective time and attendance management - Monitoring when your workforce arrive and leave the work environment. We can tailor the devices used to your company’s specialist requirements - for instance we provide heavy-duty devices for rugged environments, stainless steel devices for food manufacturers and facial recognition scanners for organisations that need to guarantee biometric security.  
  1. Provide best practice absence management - Enabling organisations to instantly flag up concerning absence trends, with managers automatically notified. Defined rules can also be established around absence. Take control and manage time off, holidays, lieu banks and sickness more efficiently.  
  1. Integrate with other systems - As part of a wider workforce management solution, the Crown system can be the prime source of data required to populate payroll and HR applications. We are able to integrate with all major payroll and HR applications as standard, and are flexible enough to adapt to any custom-built systems.  
  1. Utilise more management information - Reduce operating costs by utilising staff more cost-effectively. Optimise and align labour resource attendance and ensure training and skills can match production demand.  
  1. Allow employees to manage themselves, when appropriate - Allow your people to manage their working life in the way that suits them best, through self-service. Giving employees access to their employment details, rosters and schedules, timesheets, and absence data wherever they are will allow them to better manage their time and leave.  
  1. Access real-time data - In fast-paced manufacturing environments, it is imperative that attendance data is not only accurate, but up-to-the-minute.   
  1. Enable flexibility - With diverse company structures and business rules in today’s volatile business environment, we seamlessly respond to changing working patterns and payment processes, ensuring no disruption.  


Crown Workforce Management supports manufacturing and other businesses across the UK and internationally with some of the most advanced time and attendance features on the market. Our system allows organisations to capture unprecedented levels of information about the real hours staff work through a range of input devices.
This data can be used for detailed analysis of staff attendance and efficiency, to inform the most intelligent future schedules, to ensure more efficient and accurate payroll processing and much more. 


To find out more about how Crown T&A can drive efficiency and growth in your organisation, contact one of our specialists today 

  Free download  Productivity and the Flexible Workforce – Striking the Right Balance  Download the free whitepaper

Crown are here to help you drive efficiency and business growth

Arrange a call