The office products retailer has reduced employee scheduling errors by as much as 80% while slashing the time spent on planning workforce schedules.


After searching for a better way for its corporate and store managers to share workforce information, Office Depot Inc. has deployed a web-based enterprise application that helps to schedule employees based on store activity and employee skills and preferences. In the first results of the system, announced at this week’s Retail Systems 2003 trade show, Office Depot said it has slashed the number of scheduling errors as well as the time spent on planning employee schedules.

Office Depot has deployed TempoSoft workforce management software system, which combines sales forecasting, workload generation and workforce analysis modules. The system analyzes sales activity and employee records to recommend employee schedules to meet the needs of individual stores. This has resulted in a reduction of as much as 80% in scheduling errors, such as overstaffing or understaffing, says Jim Pettit, vice president of store operations.

In addition, the web-based system has cut the time needed to set employee schedules to about 20 minutes from the former one to two hours.

The system’s design flexibility integrated easily with Office Depot’s existing infrastructure and business processes, which helped lead to a voluntary 96% adoption rate by mangers and employees, the company said. “This was the only offering that would integrate with our existing infrastructure to optimize the balance of service quality and reduced labor costs,” Pettit said.