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The Empuls Glossary

Glossary of Human Resources Management and Employee Benefit Terms

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Workforce management is a set of processes employers use to direct staff members to be in the right places at the right times to reduce risks and maximize productivity. It is a top-down approach that starts with leadership creating defined strategic goals so that organizations have clear direction as to how future decisions will be made.

What is workforce management?

Workforce management is an institutional process that maximizes performance levels and competency for an organization. It includes all the activities needed to maintain a productive workforce, such as field service management, human resource management, performance and training management, data collection, recruiting, budgeting, forecasting, scheduling, and analytics.

Listen, recognize, award, and retain your employees with our Employee engagement software  

What is workforce management software?

Workforce management software is a suite of tools that helps ensure employees are in the right place, at the right time for maximum productivity. The software allows businesses to manage everything from payroll, benefits, and human resources to recruiting, onboarding, performance, and learning from one location. This helps companies improve employee productivity, minimize errors, decrease labor costs, streamline onboarding, and improve recruiting.

What is contingent workforce management?

Contingent workforce management is the process of hiring and managing non-permanent employees. This includes independent contractors, gig workers, those engaged under a statement of work, agency contract labor, and temporary staff. The process involves everything from hiring, assigning tasks, performance management to making payments to them. Contingent workforce management is a strategic approach aimed at sourcing, onboarding, engaging, and retaining the gig workforce during specific projects.

What are the best practices for effective workforce management?

Effective workforce management involves various practices aimed at optimizing the productivity, efficiency, and satisfaction of employees while aligning with the organization's goals and objectives. Here are some best practices of an effective workforce management:

  • Strategic workforce planning: Align workforce planning with organizational goals and future needs. Forecast workforce requirements based on business objectives, market trends, and technological advancements.
  • Recruitment and selection: Implement a robust recruitment and selection process to attract top talent. Use a combination of traditional methods and innovative techniques such as social media recruiting and employee referrals.
  • Onboarding and training: Develop comprehensive onboarding programs to help new employees integrate into the organization quickly. Provide ongoing training and development opportunities to enhance skills and knowledge.
  • Performance management: Establish clear performance expectations and provide regular feedback to employees. Use performance evaluations to recognize achievements, identify areas for improvement, and set goals for development.
  • Employee engagement: Foster a positive work environment where employees feel valued, motivated, and engaged. Encourage open communication, recognize contributions, and involve employees in decision-making processes.
  • Work-life balance: Promote work-life balance initiatives such as flexible work arrangements, telecommuting options, and wellness programs. Respect employees' personal time and encourage them to take breaks and vacations to prevent burnout.
  • Effective communication: Maintain transparent and open communication channels throughout the organization. Keep employees informed about company updates, changes, and goals to foster trust and alignment.
  • Diversity and inclusion: Embrace diversity and inclusion in the workforce. Create a culture that values and respects difference, promotes equality of opportunity, and celebrates diversity of thought and perspective.
  • Employee recognition and rewards: Implement employee recognition programs to acknowledge and reward employees for their contributions and achievements. Offer a mix of monetary and non-monetary rewards to incentivize performance.

Why is workforce management crucial in remote working scenarios?

Workforce management is crucial in remote working scenarios for several reasons:

1. Communication and collaboration

Remote work often relies heavily on digital communication and collaboration tools. Effective workforce management ensures that employees have access to the necessary tools and resources to communicate, collaborate, and coordinate effectively despite being physically dispersed.

2. Performance monitoring

Monitoring employee performance can be more challenging in remote working scenarios where direct supervision is limited. Workforce management practices such as setting clear performance expectations, tracking key performance indicators, and implementing performance management systems help ensure that employees remain productive and accountable.

3. Workload distribution

Workforce management helps distribute workloads effectively among remote team members, considering their skills, availability, and workload capacity. This ensures that work is allocated fairly, and that no employee becomes overwhelmed or underutilized.

4. Maintaining work-life balance

Remote work can blur the boundaries between work and personal life, leading to potential burnout and decreased job satisfaction. Workforce management practices that prioritize work-life balance, such as flexible scheduling and clear expectations around working hours, help prevent employee exhaustion and promote well-being.

5. Employee engagement and motivation

Remote work can sometimes lead to feelings of isolation and disconnection from colleagues and the organization. Effective workforce management fosters employee engagement and motivation through regular communication, feedback, recognition, and opportunities for social interaction and team building.

6. Training and development

Remote work environments require employees to have strong self-management skills and the ability to adapt to new technologies and ways of working. Workforce management practices that prioritize training and development help remote employees acquire the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in their roles and remain competitive in a rapidly changing work landscape.

Are there any cost-effective workforce management solutions?  

Yes, there are cost-effective workforce management solutions. Let’s look at some of the best solutions

1. Open-source software

There are open-source workforce management solutions available that businesses can customize to fit their specific needs. These solutions often offer basic features for scheduling, time tracking, and reporting, making them a cost-effective option for small to medium-sized businesses.

2. Cloud-based platforms

Many cloud-based workforce management platforms offer subscription-based pricing models, making them affordable for businesses of all sizes. These platforms typically provide a range of features, including scheduling, time and attendance tracking, employee self-service portals, and reporting tools, accessible from any internet-enabled device.

3. Integrated HRIS systems

Many HRIS (Human Resources Information Systems) providers offer workforce management modules as part of their comprehensive HR solutions. These integrated systems often provide a range of features, including employee data management, payroll processing, benefits administration, and workforce analytics, at a competitive price.

4. Self-service apps

Some workforce management solutions offer self-service mobile apps that allow employees to clock in/out, view schedules, request time off, and communicate with managers, reducing administrative overhead and improving efficiency at a lower cost.

Employee pulse surveys:

These are short surveys that can be sent frequently to check what your employees think about an issue quickly. The survey comprises fewer questions (not more than 10) to get the information quickly. These can be administered at regular intervals (monthly/weekly/quarterly).

One-on-one meetings:

Having periodic, hour-long meetings for an informal chat with every team member is an excellent way to get a true sense of what’s happening with them. Since it is a safe and private conversation, it helps you get better details about an issue.


eNPS (employee Net Promoter score) is one of the simplest yet effective ways to assess your employee's opinion of your company. It includes one intriguing question that gauges loyalty. An example of eNPS questions include: How likely are you to recommend our company to others? Employees respond to the eNPS survey on a scale of 1-10, where 10 denotes they are ‘highly likely’ to recommend the company and 1 signifies they are ‘highly unlikely’ to recommend it.

Based on the responses, employees can be placed in three different categories:

  • Promoters
    Employees who have responded positively or agreed.
  • Detractors
    Employees who have reacted negatively or disagreed.
  • Passives
    Employees who have stayed neutral with their responses.

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