6 / 12 / 2011

Implementing an e-Rostering system appropriate to your organisation's needs can deliver efficiency savings by releasing more time for staff to deliver higher quality services as well as helping to reduce agency staff spending.

E-Rostering can bring together, in one central place, management information on shift patterns (including individuals' prefered shift patterns), annual leave, sickness absence, staff skill mix and movement of staff between wards. This enables managers to quickly build rotas to meet patient demand. Employees are able to access the system to check their rotas and make personal requests.  E-Rostering is an effective tool which, when implemented successfully, allows improved workforce management of both substantive and temporary staff.

You may find our top tips for reducing agency spend useful.

London Procurement Programme guidance

The NHS London Procurement Programme has developed a framework for the purchase of eRostering solutions and details of this are available on their website. They also developed various supporting materials that will be of interest to any trust considering eRostering whether or not the LPP framework is used and these are provided here.

Template business case and benefits tracking guide

Best practice change management guidelines

Best practice roster policy guidelines and workforce efficiency levers


Good practice case studies 

A number of case studies are available to download which showcase NHS organisation's experience of implementing e-rostering systems.

Taunton and Somerset Foundation Trust implemented consistent processes for managing temporary staff and e-rostering. Combining both provided complete visibility of the workforce which has enabled a reduction in workforce expenditure, particularly agency costs. Read more. Watch the Taunton and Somerset Foundation Trust, reducing agency staff costs video case study here.

Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust has improved the way its medical trainee on-call rosters are compiled and managed. It is now planning to end paper rotas for medical staff, which will save time for the medical staffing team and medical trainees. Download this case study here.

Hertfordshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust made savings of over £250,000 by successfully implementing e-Rostering.  By making better use of its existing workforce (substantive staff), the organisation has been able to reduce the use of agency staff. The trust also added its substantive staff to the bank to increase workforce flexibility.  Where the e-Rostering system identified gaps in shifts to be filled, the organisation could better meet this demand by the increased capacity of its bank staff.  A performance dashboard highlighted any potential problems with the rosters before they happened, allowing managers to take necessary action to prevent any issues occuring.

Solent NHS Trust is forecasting savings in excess of £1m a year through e-Rostering.  The trust was formed in 2011 from community and mental health providers in Southampton and Portsmouth.  It used e-Rostering to help allocate staff effectively across a wide geographical area to enable the best patient care with the right skill mix. 

Kate Nolan from Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust is currently implementing doctors eRostering in A&E. You can follow Kate's progress by reading her blog. If you have an eRostering project planned and would be willing to blog about your experiences, please contact Jonathan Hancox (jonathan.hancox@nhsemployers.org). 

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