Staff scheduling in government institutions Read full summary in English
1 Working hours not rearranged
Rigsrevisionen’s study shows that when adjustments of announced duty rosters are required, the management of the institutions do not fully utilise their opportunities to rearrange staff’s working hours without additional expense. As an example, staff at the Danish Prison and Probation Service called in to take extra shifts is paid an hourly rate of time and a half – also when the working hour regulations prescribe that the management may change the working hours without compensation. Rigsrevisionen also found that some employees at the meat control unit at Danish Crown in Horsens had accumulated overtime at a rate of time and a half, whereas other employees had worked fewer hours than they are paid for.
2 Working hours not recorded regularly
Lack of updated information necessary to minimize overtime and undertime
The Danish Defence and Meat Control unit at Danish Crown in Horsens are not recording the working hours of their employees regularly and therefore they do not have access to the updated information on actual working hours that is necessary to minimize overtime and undertime. The Meat Control has informed Rigsrevisionen that the working hours of their employees will be recorded regularly in the future, and the Danish Defence is currently procuring a new system, which will facilitate ongoing recording of working time.
3 Staffing levels not optimised
Less working hours for their payroll funds
Beyond that, staffing levels in several of the examined institutions are not optimised which means that the institutions get less working hours for their payroll funds. Paid overtime at an hourly rate of time and a half is extensive At the Copenhagen-based centralised traffic control unit under Banedanmark and Task Force Øst (police task force operating east of the Belt) under the Sealand-based police districts, the use of overtime at an hourly rate of time and a half is extensive. The management of Copenhagen Prisons has not yet conducted an analysis of staffing levels, despite the fact that the Danish Prison and Probation Service – one year ago – concluded that there was considerable potential for savings in this area. However, the Danish Prison and Probation Service has informed Rigsrevisionen that such an analysis will be conducted in 2015.
4 Lack of analysis where and when the problem is triggered
No basis for systematic assessment
Rigsrevisionen’s study also shows that the institutions do not always follow up on past duty rosters to determine where and when overtime compensation is triggered, which would provide them with a basis for systematic assessment of staffing levels. Rigsrevisionen’s audit shows that instead of adjusting staffing levels, Copenhagen Prisons called in an average of ten additional employees at overtime pay every day for two years. It should be noted though, that the institutions monitor the development in total compensation.
5 No IT support
Staff scheduling process is unreasonably resource intensive
Lastly, the staff scheduling process is unreasonably resource intensive and not adequately supported by IT-systems in the institutions under the Danish Prison and Probation Service. As an example, staff works out a complete roster every month based on their individual wishes, Quite frequently, however, this roster does not ensure the level of staffing required in the institutions, and the people in charge of staff scheduling will subsequently spend time adjusting the duty roster. It should be noted, that the people in charge of staff scheduling in Copenhagen Prisons negotiate the duty roster with each individual member of staff. The Danish Prison and Probation Service has informed Rigsrevisionen that it is developing a staff scheduling system that will more effectively support rostering and make it less resource intensive.
Payroll expenditure is a large item on the government budget and it is therefore essential that government institutions consider economy when rostering.
In the report staff scheduling is defined as planning of working hours in institutions where employees are working irregular hours that are entirely or partly outside normal daytime working hours.
This report concerns staff scheduling in government institutions where employees are required to work irregular hours. The report is focused on economy and flows from problems identified by Rigsrevisionen in connection with audits of payroll. Rigsrevisionen initiated the study in August 2014. The purpose of the report is to examine and assess whether staff scheduling in institutions where employees are required to work irregular hours – within the framework of the working hour and working environment regulations – underpin efficient deployment of human resources.