Top 8 Shift Management Software of 2024

worker using a shift management software on their computer

Why use SafetyCulture?

One of the most versatile cloud-based digital platforms, SafetyCulture is the perfect Human Resource (HR) tool particularly when managing employee shifts and schedules. This full-featured software solution can streamline the various processes required by HR and team supervisors, including assessing worker availability, organizing team calendars, and informing workers of their weekly or monthly schedules. On top of that, the platform also assists workers in creating end-of-shift reports and storing them in a central repository for review.


  • Save time and reduce errors by shifting from manual to automated scheduling, allowing employees to access and view the calendar anytime, request time-offs, and swap shifts.
  • Consistently document the events during the entire work period through standardized end-of-shift report templates from the Public Library.
  • Delegate roles, complete with the job location, to-do lists, and must-have equipment for the day, when replacements are assigned, and follow up on their task completion.
  • Enhance collaboration among team members, even during last-minute swaps or shift changes, by announcing schedules or other notifications via Heads Up.
  • Effectively track employee attendance and performance through the platform’s built-in analytics and make the necessary improvements or adjustments based on the generated insights.

Why use Deputy?

Used by 355,000+ organizations in over a hundred countries, Deputy is a cloud-based and AI-powered shift scheduling software. It optimizes labor demand, effectively fills empty shifts, and ensures that employees assigned have the right skill set and qualifications for the job. With this digital solution’s wide range of features, businesses improve their overall productivity and increase client satisfaction.


  • AI auto-scheduler
  • Leave, unavailability, and open shifts
  • Time tracker

Why use When I Work?

Perfect for start-up businesses because of its affordability, When I Work is an employee scheduling cloud application that makes it easy for supervisors to manage their workforce. It’s also favored for its user-friendly interface with drag-and-drop capabilities and communication tools that boost collaboration and accountability among teams.


  • Employee time tracker
  • Team messaging (shift notifications and bidding)
  • HR and payroll integration

Why use ZoomShift?

ZoomShift completely eradicates the error-prone process of organizing shifts on physical calendars and Excel spreadsheets. This employee scheduling software’s wide array of features boosts productivity by allowing both managers and employees to swap shifts, clock in and out, and efficiently track time throughout the work period.


  • Shift and scheduling templates
  • Availability and time-offs
  • Timesheets and time clock

Why use Shiftboard?

Shiftboard optimizes operations by allowing employees to manage their working hours. In case of emergency absences, workers are immediately informed about changes, such as additional hours or shift trades. With this digital solution, companies successfully engage their workers and boost productivity.


  • Scheduling and communication
  • Compliance management
  • Reporting capabilities

Why use HotSchedules?

Merged recently with Fourth, HotSchedules is a platform specifically designed to help hotels, restaurants, and retail businesses manage workforce schedules and shifts. With its industry-specific features, this digital solution saves up to 75% of administrative work, improves employee engagement, and ensures labor compliance, among others.


  • Scheduling management
  • Time and attendance
  • Labor forecasting and on-demand pay

Why use ShiftForce?

This workforce management solution is best suited for companies aiming to plan better schedules for their employees. With ShiftForce, demand forecasting, task management, and team communication are made easier and more efficient. It’s also incredibly easy to use, thanks to its drag-and-drop capabilities.


  • Managers logbook
  • Shift scheduler
  • Team communication tools

Why use Inovalon?

Formerly known as ABILITY SMARTFORCE Scheduler, Inovalon’s shift management tool is best known to be designed for organizations in the healthcare industry. With this software, hospital supervisors can streamline organizing and redistributing employees in various departments. It also empowers hospital staff to better collaborate with their workmates, particularly when extending or swapping shifts.


  • Real-time data analytics
  • Staff collaboration tools
  • Executive reporting

What is Shift Management Software?

Shift management software is a digital tool that streamlines the process of organizing employee shifts and schedules. The software solution helps managers craft timetables based on availability, post these in company-wide calendars, and send personal notifications to remind employees about their work schedules. The platform would benefit businesses with a large workforce or complex scheduling requirements, such as retail, hospitality, healthcare, and manufacturing.


Manually coordinating schedules for shift workers isn’t just laborious for HR managers. It’s also prone to disorganization because of errors, last-minute no-shows, and shift swapping. Digital platforms like work shift management software can minimize problems that could lead to serious staffing issues and become an asset to organizations. Here are some specifics:

  • Enhanced Collaboration – Automated scheduling allows workers to input their availability. Thanks to the various communication tools offered by these software solutions, department managers and their employees can better discuss schedules before they’re set on the calendar.
  • Increased Cost Savings – Traditional scheduling modes require more resources because of all the back and forths going between department heads and their staff. Shifting mistakes could also result in more costs, particularly when a third-party service provider needs to get called to cover an absence. The software eradicates these issues, saving the company on unnecessary expenses.
  • Improved Employee Satisfaction – By allowing employees to request time off and swap shifts through the platform, they gain more job satisfaction. The software also increases overall efficiency since workers don’t have to discuss these adjustments with their managers.

Key Features

Some management platforms include automated scheduling modules. But this may also be available as a stand-alone application. Whichever of the two you choose for your company, make sure it has the following essentials:

  • Automated Scheduling
  • Employee Self-Service Portal
  • Alerts and Notifications
  • Communication Tools
  • Time and Attendance Tracking
  • Skill-Based Shift Assignment
  • Shift Swapping Management
  • Reporting
  • Analytics (e.g., Demand Forecasting)
  • Compliance Management
  • Integrations (e.g., with Payroll Systems)
  • Mobile Accessibility

Choosing the Right Shift Management Software

All ten options mentioned above are considered the most outstanding by various credible review sites today. Take another look at all of them in the chart below before deciding on which is the best shift management software for your needs.

Shift Management Software Free Version Paid Plan Mobile App
SafetyCulture Yes $24/user/month* Yes
Deputy No $5/user/month* Yes
When I Work No $2.50/user/month Yes
ZoomShift Yes $2/member/month* Yes
Shiftboard No Available upon request Yes
HotSchedules No Not indicated Yes
ShiftForce No $36/month Yes
Inovalon No Not indicated Yes

* billed annually

Eunice Arcilla Caburao
Article by

Eunice Arcilla Caburao

SafetyCulture Content Contributor
Eunice Caburao is a content contributor for SafetyCulture. A registered nurse, theater stage manager, Ultimate Frisbee athlete, and mother, she has written a wide range of topics for over a decade. Eunice draws upon her rich, multidisciplinary background to create informative articles about emerging topics on health, safety, and workplace efficiency.