With so many cloud-based productivity and project management suites out there, it’s a wonder there aren’t more that drill down and focus on one of the most universally common aspects of work: scheduling it. Sure, project management suites like BaseCamp and Zoho Projects feature calendars, tasks lists and collaboration tools, but some companies have relatively complex staff schedules to manage. A Web and mobile app called When I Work launched by ThisCLICKS Interactive earlier this week aims to meet precisely that need.
When I Work’s Web-based dashboard provides a platform for managers and staff to view and edit work schedules, define shifts and schedule time off. The weekly calendar view neatly lays out who’s working, at which times and on which days in color-coded blocks.
The week’s schedule can be printed and hung in a real-world office or live solely in the cloud. Depending on each person’s account settings, an email or an SMS text message fires off to employees anytime there’s a change to the schedule, or when a person’s shift is about to start. Crucially, the site has an app for Android and one coming soon for iPhone, so workers can have the most up-to-date schedule in their pockets.
From the dashboard, staffers can set their notification preferences, mark off their “do not disturb” hours and request time off, which notifies the manager of the request, who can grant or deny it.
While such a tool may not be necessary for distributed virtual teams, it could simplify scheduling for many real-world businesses, especially retail, food service and office jobs, some of which likely wouldn’t need a more robust project management suite.
When I Work does not currently integrate with any other cloud-based applications, but this will change once the API used to drive the site’s mobile apps is fine-tuned and documented, according to Chad Halvorson, creative director at ThisCLICKS Interactive.