Online employee scheduling apps give you all the tools you need to create optimal schedules for your teams and avoid misunderstandings or shift conflicts. Check out our list of the 10 best employee scheduling apps to find the right fit for you.

Every business owner knows how time-consuming and (nearly) impossible it can be to create a well-rounded employee schedule 鈥 especially if you鈥檙e still relying on pen and paper or Excel spreadsheets to get the job done.

In fact, businesses lose 140 hours each year on manual job scheduling and experience 174% higher turnover due to manual scheduling errors!

If you鈥檙e looking for a solution to easily create and manage optimal schedules for your teams, you鈥檝e come to the right place.

We鈥檝e lined up the 10 best employee scheduling apps to help you find one that best suits your business needs and budget.

If you don鈥檛 have the time to read through our research, jump down to our quick comparison table.

Our Top Picks

  1. Best all-in-one employee scheduling app

  2. Good for appointment scheduling

  3. Good for calendar management

What to Look For in a Employee Scheduling App

Here are some key features you should look for when selecting an employee scheduling software solution.聽

  • Drag-and-drop shift scheduler. The app should allow you to easily plan upcoming shifts or rearrange whole schedules.聽
  • Shift templates. Employee scheduling apps should let you save your employees鈥 regular working hours and reuse shift templates so you don鈥檛 have to manually create schedules every week.聽
  • Flexible shift swapping. Employees should be able to trade shifts and get coverage for hours they can鈥檛 work. Your team can also assign themselves an open shift with one click, and managers can then approve them.
  • Time off management features. You should be able to track and approve employees鈥 PTO from anywhere, track employee absences, and ensure you鈥檙e fully staffed.聽
  • Compliance with labor laws: Check if the app has built-in features to help you comply with labor laws and regulations. This could include tracking overtime, scheduling breaks, or managing employee certifications or licenses.
  • In-app chat. The app should come with secure chat features so employees can message each other, ask questions, or collaborate on projects no matter where they are.聽
  • Advanced notifications and alerts. Make sure the app sends managers automatic notifications when employees work overtime, clock in, and request PTO.
  • GPS time clock with geofencing. Employees need to be able to clock in and out from anywhere, so a one-touch time clock they can access right from their phones is ideal. Also, look for an app that comes with geofencing technology so you know employees are clocking in and out from their job sites.聽
  • Reporting and analytics features. The best employee scheduling apps provide detailed analytics so you can make data-driven decisions for your business.
  • Payroll integrations. Look for an app that allows you to easily export employee timesheets to your payroll software for a simplified process.

The 10 Best Employee Scheduling Apps of 2023

  1. Connecteam 鈥 Best all-in-one employee scheduling app

    Available on

    • Web
    • iOS
    • Android

    Connecteam鈥檚 all-in-one employee scheduling app provides all the tools you need to create and manage team schedules with complete ease and efficiency, even while on the go. Connecteam also offers top-notch customer support, an intuitive user experience, and a highly customizable platform that can be adapted to suit your unique business needs.

    Let鈥檚 take a look at how Connecteam can help your business simplify the scheduling process:

    Intuitive drag-and-drop shift scheduler聽

    Connecteam offers an intuitive drag-and-drop scheduling tool so you can create shifts and simply drag employees鈥 names to them. With the shift scheduler, you can automatically assign shifts based on employee qualifications, preferences, and availability.

    You can also take advantage of scheduling templates to make the process even faster. Use Connecteam鈥檚 premade scheduling templates or customize your own however you need. You can also create and automatically assign recurring shifts.聽

    Additionally, Connecteam has automatic shift conflict alerts that let you know immediately of any scheduling errors. This helps you reduce labor costs by avoiding double scheduling, assigning the wrong employee to a shift, or assigning an employee who鈥檚 scheduled for PTO.

    GPS time clock and geofencing tools for better oversight

    Connecteam鈥檚 GPS-enabled time clock lets employees clock in and out directly from their mobile phones from wherever they鈥檙e working. Its GPS location tracking feature captures your employees鈥 location when they clock in, and you can use Connecteam鈥檚 real-time location tracking feature to see where your workers are while they鈥檙e on the clock. That way, you can be sure no one is getting paid for work when they aren鈥檛 actually working.聽

    In addition, geofencing functions let you draw digital borders around job sites to restrict clocking in and out from that particular are. You鈥檒l receive a notification if a team member strays outside the work area and send employees reminders to be inside the geofence when clocking in and out.

    But rest assured: Connecteam never records employees鈥 locations when they鈥檙e clocked out.

    Shift swapping for seamless coverage

    Connecteam allows your employees to trade shifts easily. With just a click of a button, they can request shift swaps directly from the Connecteam app, and you can approve or deny them.

    Once you approve a shift swap, this employee scheduling app will automatically update the schedule and send push notifications to anyone whose hours or days have changed.聽

    Add tasks, forms, checklists, and descriptions to shifts

    One of the best things about Connecteam is it allows you to ensure all your employees have all the information they need to do their jobs properly. Include shift-specific tasks, forms, checklists, and descriptions that employees see as soon as they clock in for their shifts.

    That way, employees understand exactly what鈥檚 expected of them you can check in with their progress throughout their workdays.

    In-app chat to communicate with your team聽

    Even if you aren鈥檛 physically in the same place as your team, remain connected and available with Connecteam鈥檚 smart in-app chat.聽

    You and your staff can quickly and easily ask and answer questions, chat about schedules, tasks, and projects, and even share files and snap photos to share.聽

    馃挕 Pro tip:

    Take advantage of Connecteam鈥檚 Smart Groups feature, which allows you to create customized groups of employees. That way, you can address entire groups at once whenever you need.

    Easily manage employee breaks and overtime

    Connecteam automatically alerts employees when they need to take a break. You can also set the app to automatically notify you when an employee approaches overtime.聽

    This helps you manage overtime pay, reduced the amount you spend on payroll, and helps ensure compliance with labor laws.聽

    Request or approve PTO with a single click

    Connecteam鈥檚 built-in PTO management tools allow you to view PTO allowance and leave requests right from within the app. You can see your team鈥檚 time off, ensure you鈥檙e properly staffed when employees are away, and keep track of how much you鈥檙e spending on PTO.

    Your team can easily request time off through the mobile app, too. Once you approve a request, Connecteam will automatically input PTO into your employee鈥檚 schedule.

    These features help ensure you remain compliant with labor laws and promote a healthy work-life balance for your team.

    Integrations with popular payroll solutions

    Connecteam鈥檚 employee scheduling app directly integrates with Gusto and QuickBooks Online for seamless payroll.聽 Additionally, Connecteam offers tools to automatically create employee timesheets. Your employees鈥 hours are automatically recorded on their timesheets, eliminating the need to manually add up hours and enter them into payroll software.

    Simplified payroll process

    Connceteam creates employee timesheets for you which you can then automatically export to Excel or payroll software, like Quickbooks and Gusto. This reduces any manual data entry and ensures you have all employee hours documented for your records.聽

    Detailed reports, smart notifications, document storage, and so much more!

    With Connecteam, you can generate detailed, customizable reports on everything from payroll spending and training completion rates to time spent on projects and employee attendance.

    Additionally, Connecteam has powerful HR tools to manage employee recognition, training and learning, employee milestones, and documents. You can also keep track of your employees鈥 training records, licensing expiration dates, qualifications, and interview documents.聽

    Teams of up to 10 people can get Connecteam鈥檚 employee scheduling software free for life, and the platform鈥檚 paid plan starts at just $29/month for up to 30 users.

    I had people that we would just schedule for work and hope and pray that they show up. And now, we have an average of a 90-95% attendance rate.

    Cristen Gros
    VP of Special Projects

    Connecteam also offers a free for life plan – Try Connecteam here!

    Pros

    • Add tasks, forms, checklists, and more to shifts

    • Integrates with popular payroll solutions

    • Automatic shift scheduling tools

    • One-click shift swapping

    Cons

    • More integrations in development

    Pricing

    Free-for-life plan availablePremium plans start at $29/month for 30 users

    No credit card required!

    Start Scheduling Now
  2. mHelpDesk 鈥 Good for appointment scheduling

    Available on

    • Web
    • iOS
    • Android
    Screenshot of the mHelpDesk webpage

    mHelpDesk is very similar to Google Calendar and Outlook, but was designed especially for field service businesses. A few core capabilities of this employee scheduling app include: quickly see everyone鈥檚 availability, easily schedule field workers and technicians, automated assignment notifications, view shift and customer details, and eliminate over and understaffing with helpful alerts. mHelpDesk also integrates with Google Calendar, Home Advisor, and QuickBooks.

    Learn more about mHelpDesk

    Key Features

    • Clear and easy-to-view employee availability
    • Several integrations
    • Automated features
    • Appointment scheduling

    Pros

    • User friendly
    • Responsive customer service
    • Simplified billing and invoicing

    Cons

    • Slow loading times
    • Some integrations don鈥檛 work very well
    • Cannot remove old users

    Pricing

    Contact vendor for price Trial: No Free Plan: No

  3. Shiftboard 鈥 Good for calendar management

    Available on

    • Web
    • iOS
    • Android
    Screenshot of the Shiftboard webpage

    When it comes to scheduling hourly workers, Shiftboard can be a great option and highly benefit your business. Features like automated scheduling, schedule distribution, shift swapping, push notifications, two-way texting, and mobile clock in and out can all be done in this employee scheduling app. Shiftboard also integrates with numerous softwares such as Oracle, Dropbox, ADP, Paycor, and more.

    Learn more about Shiftboard

    Key Features

    • Automated scheduling
    • Budgeting and budget forecasting
    • Calendar management
    • Applicant and candidate management

    Pros

    • Good variety of features and tools
    • Good for managing complex employee schedules

    Cons

    • No training material or tutorials
    • Some users complain the software looks old and outdated

    Pricing

    Contact vendor for price Trial: No Free Plan: No

  4. QuickBooks Time 鈥 Good for businesses already using QuickBooks for payroll

    Available on

    • Web
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Windows
    • Mac
    Screenshot of the QuickBooks Time webpage

    QuickBooks Time has similar features as most employee scheduling apps on the market. Schedule by shift or by job, use drag & drop capabilities, send notifications about shift changes, and easily copy the previous week鈥檚 schedue. Receive alerts about overtime or missed shifts so you can reduce labor expenses. This app also has a cool 鈥淲ho鈥檚 Working鈥 feature, so you can immediately see who is available immediately for urgent jobs.

    Learn more about QuickBooks Time

    Key Features

    • Accounting integrations
    • Simple employee scheduling
    • Budget tracking and forecasting
    • Asset management and tracking

    Pros

    • Easy to use
    • Good variety of features

    Cons

    • Difficult onboarding process
    • Can get expensive for large teams

    Pricing

    Starts at $20/month + $10/user/month Trial: Yes 鈥 30-day Free Plan: No

  5. Homebase 鈥 Good for premade scheduling templates

    Available on

    • Web
    • iOS
    • Android
    Screenshot of the Homebase webpage

    With Homebase, it鈥檚 easy to drag & drop team schedules, make changes from your mobile phone, easily copy last week鈥檚 schedule, or use automatic scheduling. The app takes into account team availability and roles, and lets you know if you accidentally schedule someone for the wrong role.

    Employees can update their availability or request shift trades, which is then sent to management for approval. Additionally, Homebase can total hours and overtime and subtract break times. Homebase integrates sales data from Clover, Toast, Square, and more.

    Learn more about Homebase

    Key Features

    • Schedule templates
    • Automated scheduling
    • Overtime alerts
    • Availability tracking

    Pros

    • Easy to use
    • Easy to track employee hours

    Cons

    • Less expensive plans lack important features
    • Requires some training before use

    Pricing

    Starts at $20/location/month Trial: Yes 鈥 14-day Free Plan: Yes 鈥 For a single location & up to 20 employees

  6. Deputy 鈥 Good for more tech savvy businesses

    Available on

    • Web
    • iOS
    • Android
    Screenshot of the Deputy webpage

    When using Deputy, you really need to be tech-savvy and Deputy knows it. The folks at Deputy truly customizes their employee scheduler app for your unique business needs. They request all of your scheduling information before you begin using the app and customize the interface to meet your business needs.

    Some of their scheduling features include auto-scheduling with lunch and rest breaks. You can create, copy, or publish schedules, shift swapping, and shift replacements. Also, Deputy integrates the software with POS and HR systems like Gusto, Xero, QuickBooks, Lightspeed, and more.

    Learn more about Deputy

    Key Features

    • Automated scheduling
    • Alerts and notifications
    • Employee database
    • Drag & Drop features

    Pros

    • Good time management feature
    • Several integrations

    Cons

    • Some bugs and technical issues with breaks
    • There are more features and functionalities on the iOS app as opposed to Android

    Pricing

    Starts at $3.5/user/month, for Scheduling or Time & Attendance Trial: Yes 鈥 31-day Free Plan: No

  7. Sling 鈥 Good for managing your labor cost

    Available on

    • Web
    • iOS
    • Android
    Screenshot of the Sling webpage

    Sling makes it easy to create employee schedules, manage time off, availability, and shift swapping. Schedule overtime, reduce absenteeism and late arrivals, and you can also receive notifications of overlapping shifts or double-booking. The integrated time clock also makes it easy for employees to clock in and out from their smartphones.

    Sling also comes with tools to help you stay within your labor budget. Set weekly and monthly labor budgets and Sling will let you know if you鈥檝e exceeded them with automated alerts. This helps you avoid overspending on employee labor and scheduling the right number of employees.

    Learn more about Sling

    Key Features

    • Employee directory
    • Payroll reporting and management
    • Alerts and notifications on overtime or double-booking
    • Reporting and analytics

    Pros

    • Labor budget tools
    • Filter fields to view specific schedules

    Cons

    • Not great for large teams
    • Medoicre user experience

    Pricing

    Starts at $1.70/user/month Trial: Yes Free Plan: Yes

  8. HotSchedules by Fourth

    HotSchedules by Fourth 鈥 Good for complete visibility into scheduling changes

    Available on

    • Web
    • iOS
    • Android
    Screenshot of the HotSchedules by Fourth webpage

    If you鈥檙e looking for a simple interface that makes employee scheduling easier to manage, Fourth is a great option. Employees can request to swap, release, or pick up shifts right from their mobile phone. As a manager, you have total visibility over all scheduling changes and can approve or deny them from the app.聽

    You can also use Fourth to help you make better, data-driven decisions. The app provides labor and sales data to keep you informed of scheduling data so you can maximize employee hours productivity.

    Learn more about HotSchedules by Fourth

    Key Features

    • Automated scheduling
    • Budgeting management and forecasting
    • Employee management
    • Employee database

    Pros

    • Easy scheduling feature
    • Easy to use

    Cons

    • Poor scheduling templates
    • Frequent software updates

    Pricing

    Contact vendor for price Trial: No Free Plan: No

  9. Jolt 鈥 Good for easy shift swapping

    Available on

    • Web
    • iOS
    • Android
    Screenshot of the Jolt webpage

    Organize shifts hassle-free with Jolt. One thing we love about this work schedule app is its incredibly simple user interface and color coded schedules. Managers can create schedules using the simple drag and drop scheduler, create templates for easy reusability, and access schedules for all of your stores in one place.

    You can also maximize your profits with Jolt鈥檚 labor cost forecast tools. The app tracks employee overtime and breaks, displays sales revenue, labor cost, net income, and labor percentage to help you work smarter.

    Learn more about Jolt

    Key Features

    • FDA compliance
    • Employee scheduling
    • Desktop and mobile access
    • Time clock management

    Pros

    • Easy to use
    • Good customer support

    Cons

    • Setting availability is hard to do
    • Not able to request PTO or vacation days
    • The app interface is not as good as the desktop

    Pricing

    Contact vendor for price Trial: No Free Plan: No

  10. Skedulo 鈥 Good for filling last-minute shifts

    Available on

    • Web
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Windows
    • Mac
    Screenshot of the Skedulo webpage

    Skedulo is intended to increase productivity and streamline day-to-day operations. This scheduling app for employees makes it easy to organize and oversee your entire workforce on a single platform in one view 鈥 regardless of whether they operate from the office, out in the field, or both. Quickly align your entire workforce on tasks, projects, and requirements and adapt schedules as needed.

    If an employee calls out last minute, Skedulo comes with a feature they refer to as Work Offers. Use this tool to see who else is willing or available to work and reach out to them instantly to see if they鈥檒l pick up the shift. An employee can claim or decline the shift with the push of a button.

    Learn more about Skedulo

    Key Features

    • Dispatch tools
    • Automated scheduling
    • HIPAA compliant
    • Skeulo MasterMind tool for automating schedules

    Pros

    • Very easy to set up and use
    • Simple for employees to clock in and out

    Cons

    • Pricey option
    • Requires manual refreshing

    Pricing

    Contact vendor for price Trial: No Free Plan: No

Compare the Best Employee Scheduling Apps

Topic Start for free HotSchedules by Fourth
Reviews
4.8
4.3
4.4
4.7
4.6
4.6
4.6
4.4
4.7
4.4
Pricing
Starts at just $29/month for the first 30 users
Contact vendor for price
Contact vendor for price
Starts at $20/month + $10/user/month
Starts at $20/location/month
Starts at $3.5/user/month, for Scheduling or Time & Attendance
Starts at $1.70/user/month
Contact vendor for price
Contact vendor for price
Contact vendor for price
Free Trial
yes
14-day
no
no
yes
30-day
yes
14-day
yes
31-day
yes
no
no
no
Free Plan
yes
Free Up to 10 users
no
no
no
yes
For a single location & up to 20 employees
no
yes
no
no
no

What is an Employee Scheduling App?

An employee scheduling app is a software application that helps businesses efficiently create, manage, and communicate work schedules for their employees. It replaces manual scheduling methods like spreadsheets or pen and paper, drastically streamlining the scheduling process.聽

These apps allow managers to create and customize schedules based on factors like shifts, availability, and employee preferences. Employees can view their schedules directly from their smartphones and even request time off, swap shifts, and receive notifications about schedule changes. The app facilitates open communication between managers and employees with in-app chat and real-time updates, too. Usually, employee scheduling apps also include reporting features and integration capabilities, too, improving productivity and helping to reduce labor costs.

How Do Employee Scheduling Apps Work?

Employee scheduling apps work by providing a digital platform for managers to create, manage, and communicate work schedules for their employees. Managers can input employee availability, assign shifts, and handle time-off requests through the app.

Employees can access their schedules, clock in and out of work, submit availability preferences, request time off, and receive notifications about any changes. The app streamlines the scheduling process, automates tasks, and ensures real-time updates. It may also offer reporting and analytics features to track employee hours, optimize scheduling efficiency, and improve overall workforce management.

Benefits of Using an Employee Scheduling App

Increased productivity and efficiency

Managers can quickly and easily create schedules, find substitutes for last-minute absences, and manage availability for multiple locations or teams. This helps reduce absenteeism and maximizes productivity.聽

Reduced labor costs

Employee scheduling apps help businesses save money by reducing costs associated with manual scheduling. They also help managers optimize shift schedules so they are appropriately staffed, reducing overstaffing and overtime pay.聽

Streamlined communication

In-app chat, updates features, and a company newsfeed ensures all employees remain up to date with company happenings. These features also make it easy for employees to chat with each other and ask and answer questions in real time.聽

Accurate scheduling

Employee scheduling apps can help businesses create accurate schedules each week. By using automated tools to consider employee availability, skill sets, and preferences, businesses can ensure that the right people are working at the right times, as well as make sure that labor costs remain within budget.

Compliance with labor laws

Scheduling apps often include features to help businesses comply with labor laws and regulations. They can track employee hours, ensure proper breaks and rest periods, and monitor overtime, helping businesses avoid legal issues and penalties.

Real-time updates and accessibility

Employee scheduling apps provide real-time updates, ensuring that employees have access to the most current schedule information. This helps reduce confusion and ensures that employees are always aware of any changes or updates to their shifts.

Integration with other software

Many scheduling apps integrate with other software or tools, such as payroll systems or time-tracking software. This integration streamlines processes, reduces duplication of effort, and improves overall efficiency.

FAQs

What can an employee scheduling app do for my company?

Employee scheduling apps will decrease the amount of time it takes you to create employee schedules by automating the process. They help improve and increase employee productivity, provide management with clear oversight, and reduce costs from human error. There should also be features that allow for employee collaboration and communication.

Is a free employee work schedule app a good choice for my business?

This really depends on what the free plan includes and what features are provided. Connecteam, for example, offers a completely free small business plan for businesses with up to 10 users.

This exceptional plan not only comes with complete employee scheduling tools but all of Connecteam鈥檚 employee management features. Before selecting the best app for your business, be sure to do your research and take advantage of free trials to test out different options.

Learn more about Connecteam’s Small Business Plan here.

 

Why should I use an employee scheduling app?

Employee scheduling apps save time by automating the scheduling process and reducing manual errors. Managers can create schedules much quicker and send them out to employees instantly. Using an app for scheduling also improves communication between managers and employees and ensures everyone stays informed about schedule changes and updates.

Businesses have better rates of employee satisfaction because they can provide flexibility in terms of shift preferences and time-off requests. The app also helps with compliance by tracking hours and ensuring adherence to labor laws.聽

>>Get started with Connecteam for free today!<<

The Bottom Line on Online Employee Scheduling Apps

As you are aware, scheduling employees can be a long and arduous process, especially if you鈥檙e still doing it by pen and paper. Not only can it be full of mistakes, but it鈥檚 hard to disseminate to employees and papers can be easily lost or misplaced.

Most companies are making the technological jump to an employee scheduling app that helps streamline the process. Management can now focus on more important daily tasks as opposed to spending hours creating and executing a working schedule that fits all of your employees鈥 needs.

Connecteam is the best employee scheduling app and offers a host of other tools, such as communication, task management, and employee training.

Start your free 14-day trial today and see how Connecteam can help streamline your business.