Industries such as manufacturing and hospitality rely on employees who can work in person during a set shift. For this type of work, predictive scheduling ensures that employees have some control over their scheduled working hours, which allows them to find stable care for their children.
Research shows that work schedules can greatly impact parents’ ability to find and maintain high-quality child care. Employees with nonstandard work hours, such as night shifts, often have trouble finding care, as most formal child care centers are closed when they work.
Likewise, employees with unstable schedules or those who face schedule changes due to on-call work or last-minute shift changes often rely on numerous care arrangements, informal care arrangements, such as babysitters and siblings, or are forced to leave children without care.
Predictive scheduling includes the following best practices, according to the National Women’s Law Center:
- offering employees input into their work schedules;
- not changing work schedules without employees’ consent;
- giving employees their schedules as least two weeks in advance;
- minimizing disruptions to schedules or last-minute schedule changes; and
- offering expanded hours for part-time employees instead of hiring new employees.