The Air Navigation Service Provider (ANSP) would not be able to serve the aviation sector without its Air Traffic Controllers. Therefore, the right ATCOs must be assigned to the right shifts for the ANSP to work properly. To maximize effectiveness, it must be crucial to create reliable duty rosters and distribute shifts fairly among ATCOs.
What is a duty roster?
The duty roster is the starting point for an Air Traffic Controller's work. It shows the controllers how their shifts, rotations, and breaks are allocated. A duty roster is thus a fundamental tool for organizing an ATCO's work, ensuring that all tasks are performed safely and efficiently.
Why is it important to automate the duty roster?
It is the responsibility of the roster manager or planning manager to consider all regulations, ANSP-specific constraints, and employees' preferences to build a balanced duty roster. Creating the roster by hand is time-consuming and prone to unforeseen errors. To make the process easier, you can use a rostering automation platform. A platform like SkyRoster will consider all the necessary factors and help you build a compliant, flexible, and fair roster.
Automating the process will reduce the time to create a roster, and the errors will be eliminated or minimized. Besides, there are other benefits such as:
- automatically calculating the hours worked and the remaining days off;
- more room for ATCOs' flexibility;
- staff demand forecasting allows you to make smart decisions by reducing unnecessary manpower when traffic is down or optimizing their work;
- automatically adjusts when interruptions occur;
- easy way to keep ATCOs satisfied by considering their work preferences;
- fair workload distribution.
Stopping at the last benefit, as you may already know, distributing shifts fairly can be quite a tricky endeavor - especially if you're trying to do it manually. This is where rostering automation comes in handy. Platforms such as SkyRoster offer a variety of modules that can help with rostering. Let's take a closer look at how it can help you distribute shifts fairly with the Strategic Roster Module.
How can you use the Strategic Roster module and respect fair workload distribution with SkyRoster?
First of all, you need to set up the organization settings. You may alter the preferences to suit the needs of your organization better. This is an essential stage in recreating the behavior of your ANSP. You can find more about this step and other crucial ones in this article.
After those steps, you can create a new roster from scratch or continue with a previous one using the Strategic Roster module in SkyRoster. If you want to continue with an existing roster, the platform will build a new roster based on the information included in the existing one. This will save you a great deal of time, and you can stick with what has worked in the past or test to see if that roster is the winning lottery ticket for your ANSP's productivity.
To build a roster from scratch, you may pick the opposite option and complete the following three stages. This procedure may be accomplished quickly and allow you to work with a new, complete roster.
The three stages are:
Constraints settings that go hand in hand with fair workload distribution.
This step entails settling on a unit, roster type, and rotation strategy. Here, you will select the shift pattern that generates a roster that can be adjusted to meet fatigue management rules. During this stage, you establish the structure of your roster and the method you use to manage employees' hours.
Click the "Staff selection" option to select the sub-units you want to add to the roster. Here, you can choose from a list of all available sub-units with a single click.
In theory, fair workload distribution while rostering should be a breeze, but it can be a real headache in practice. To resolve this issue, proceed to the third step - constraints settings. To optimise the roster for specific KPIs, you can enable or disable options like respecting minimum rest time, shift distribution, qualification prioritization, night and weekend shift distribution, and many more. Check out this article for more information on distributing work among employees fairly. The advice it contains is useful for any organization, not just for an ANSP.
On a final note
Reduced productivity, bodily complaints (such as back pain or gastrointestinal issues), weariness, and sadness are all possible results of a hectic lifestyle and an unbalanced roster. Assist ATCOs with a better work-life balance by assigning shifts fairly and considering their preferences.
If you want to see how you can fairly distribute the workload, send us a sample roster, and we will optimise it with SkyRoster.