Keeping your employees on track can be a tricky business, especially if they have multiple tasks to juggle. Scheduling tasks ahead of time, however, ensures that employees are never blindsided by sudden due dates and that the workload is split evenly across your team. There are several ways in which to schedule tasks, depending on the nature of your business and your personal preferences.
Split your important tasks into daily, weekly and monthly categories. Assign one day each week to cover weekly tasks and one day each month for the monthly tasks. This breaks up something like store maintenance, for example, while ensuring deep cleaning tasks are still accomplished.
Give each of your employees a daily tasks checklist. This list should include everything the employee is expected to do that day. Assignments may include things like cleaning the store, resetting visual displays or regular maintenance tasks. If desired, allow employees to split these tasks between themselves however they see fit.
Work with managers or shift leaders to determine a realistic task workload for each employee. It is important to keep employees busy without overwhelming them, and direct managers will have better input as to what that will entail.
Place the most important tasks near the front of the list. Accept that employees may not always complete the tasks you schedule. With that in mind, make sure that they start with the things that absolutely have to be done.
Offer draft task lists to employees and ask for feedback on whether they feel the schedule is realistic and fair. This is an excellent way to get your staff involved in important decision-making processes.
Perform regular "check-ups" with employees to ensure that tasks are being completed. You should also speak with employees to understand whether they are familiar with the tasks you require them to complete. This is important as assignments and expectations can often be lost in translation as they are relayed through several layers of management.
While a simple printed checklist is often enough for small businesses, you may wish to invest in task/productivity-specific software if you are dealing with a large workforce.