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Records, Record Keeping, and Record Keeping Administration

If you need to keep records, have the computer generate them for you. Why not use the computer to do any calculations and presentations you have to have.

The important activity of making and keeping records is an essential and integral part of management. In many instances it is also a legal requirement. The EC Working Time Directive instructs as a matter of law to keep records about the hours staff work and their holidays.
The purpose of a record is to provide accurate, current, comprehensive and concise alecrmation concerning your staff. It is there to provide evidence that may have to be produced in court, that your organization has not broken the law. The records can also produce a baseline for improvements to be judged against. Visual Rota can be used to keep the following records.
The shifts and hours worked by all the staff.
The holiday entitlement of each employee
The holidays taken by each employee.
Visual Rota is a computer record and can be kept up to date as events occur, so it is always relevant and accurate. The advantages of using a computer program such as Visual Rota, is that it's calculations regarding employment are 100% accurate, they are legible and when printed off are an indelible record. The type faces are always clear and unambiguous, they can be easily checked for accuracy, and changes to the record can be commented, timed & dated. The computer records are primarily to serve the organisation against indiscriminate claims of negligence and spurious litigation. They are proof positive of past actions and working practice by the organisation as being acceptable to employees and management. The records cannot be removed and destroyed without copies being readily available.

As an example, I have an employee working part time called D. Smith and the following is the staff record of attendance, sickness and holidays. D.Smith works part time, averaging 25 hours per week, based on 16 shifts a month. It works out over the year as 4 shifts a week, once holidays are taken into account. The following diagram shows the record of shifts over the previous year.

Image from Visual Rota. Each month starts with a pink coloured cell and ends with a green coloured cell. Holidays are denoted by H and coloured blue, and sickness is denoted by S and coloured red. Where a clash of colours would occur, we use common sense to solve the problem. There is enough room on one file(A4 size printout ) for 5 years of staff data.

In this example, all shifts have abbreviations, M(6 hour morning shift), A(6hr afternoon), E(8hr early), L(8hr late), SE(4hr early), SL(4hr late), N(11hr nights), H(holiday), R(request off), S(sickday).
Dates, dates can be dialled in at any time for each appropriate month and the screen can scroll up & down. Colours are used to show anything of importance.
For a full explanation of the details in these images, please go to Visual Rota Layout image(20K)

Details. The year runs from October-September (which is the default period for the EC Directive) so that staff can accrue holiday pay during the year to use during the summer. Staff are entitled to 4 weeks holiday pay based on their average weekly hours. The first record shows that D.Smith has worked 1261 hours in this holiday year, and each month's hours are shown to the far right of the diagram. These hours fluctuate between 90 and 122 hours per month, mostly based on the requirements of the organisation, the contracted hours with the employee, D.Smith, and the personal requests from the employee for days off or extra work. If the employee had worked exactly 25 hours a week on average, then the number of holiday hours would be 100. In the event of the employee working a different number of hours during the year, then a different number of holiday days should be paid, on a pro rata basis.
The next diagram shows the holiday hours calculated by Visual Rota and this comes to a total of 105.1 hours.

holiday hours

Visual Rota calculates these holiday hours as the shifts are entered, and alterations to the shifts result in instant recalculations, so you can be sure that you are always up to date and 100% accurate.

The next diagram shows the holidays actually taken. A total of 100 hours.

holidays taken

Visual Rota calculates these holiday hours taken as the holidays are entered. In this example, the number of holidays comes to 20 days at 5 hours per day. This is a total of 100 holiday hours and is consistent with the employees contract( and the EC Working Time Directive which stipulates 4 weeks as from next year). However, because D.Smith has worked extra hours, the actual number of holiday hours earned is 105.1, an extra 5.1 hours. The employee will receive this addition holiday entitlement as agreed with the contract of employment. If there had been too much holiday paid, then this contingency is also covered by the contract. In practice, this rarely happens.

This method is easy to keep up to date and takes very little time to set up and maintain.

If an employee leaves part way through the year, the holiday entitlement is already worked out in advance. If an employee joins part way through the year, the holiday entitlement is worked on a pro rata basis as it goes along, it couldn't be easier. If there is a waiting period before the employee is entitled to holiday pay, say 3 months, the shifts are amended not to accrue holiday pay during this period.

For full time employees entitled to 20 days holiday pay regardless of their hours actually worked, you will still need to keep a record of their holidays to ensure that they are taken within the year.

EC Working Time Directive - Weekly Working Time Limits

The Directive sets a limit on the average amount of working time which can be done by a worker during a seven day period. The working time must not average more than 48 hours per week over a 4 month period. This limit is not easy to work out using manual means, but is easy when looking at the diagrams above. 48 hours per week over 4 months(17 weeks) is 832 hours(17 weeks is 816 hours). Holidays and sickness during the 4 month period are specially treated, whereby, each day taken as holiday or sickness is substituted by the same number of days from the next working days immediately after the reference period. ie. 5 days holiday during the reference period requires you add the hours worked in the next 5 working days to the total of the hours worked in the reference period. In Visual Rota, this is easy to see and do. The default date for the reference period is October 1st 1998.

More alecrmation about Visual Rota

user guides,help & video record keeping using VR calculating holiday entitlements shifts overlapping pay rates
creating new schedules with VR shift pattern generator changing over to VR hotels and staffing
See your staffing costs as you prepare the schedule On Oct.1st 1998 the new regulations came into force Frequently asked questions Using Visual Rota Statistics to make decisions
 Managing Change. How to introduce changes How to use annual hours in planning schedules What is Whatif analysis? How having too many staff can affect quality as well as too few staff
Continually  short staffed-fact or myth How to reduce staff painlessly please email us Theory and creating the staffing schedule

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