Today, small business owners are very lucky because there are a few great free employee schedule maker that can be used. There is even an employee schedule maker provider that also provides a time clock app in their free plan. In addition, there are also those that can be used to manage unlimited employees.
Therefore, we researched dozens of options for finding the best free employee scheduler. So you can find the right tools that can fit your unique needs.
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How We Evaluated Free Employee Schedule Maker
The best free employee schedule maker is one that provides core functions of employee scheduling. Its features must cover scheduling employees working hours, shift changes, conflict management, and schedule visibility for employees.
In addition, the software must easily accessible for both managers and employees. Therefore, we only chose the free employee schedule maker that provides mobile apps. So managers can manage the schedules while employees always stay informed even on the go.
Free Online Employee Schedule Maker
We summarize the best free online employee schedule maker because this type of software is the most accessible. So as mentioned above, managers and employees can access the software at any time and anywhere.
Below are the best free online employee schedule makers chosen by our reviewer team.
|When I Work||
Homebase is the most feature-rich free employee schedule maker on the market. Because of Homebase provides almost all core functions of employee scheduling. From employee scheduling to payroll integration, everything is available in their free plan.
For employees, they can request shift trades or update their availability. But the free plan does not provide manager approvals feature. So changes in availability by employees do not require manager approval in the free plan.
There is also a Time Clock App for tracking time and turn any browser, tablet or phone into a sophisticated time clock. The app has the ability to track breaks and overtime. Also, it allows you to prepare timesheets for payroll.
But if you need advanced features of the time clock app such as GPS-Based Clock in and capture foto, you need to subscribe to their “Plus” plan or above.
Homebase also provides mobile apps that are available on Android and IOS. With this app, you can manage your work schedule, check your schedule, and communicate with your team while you’re on the go.
The free plan from Homebase covers almost all core functions of employee scheduling. Although there are some feature restrictions there.
The main drawback of the free plan from Homebase is that there are no reminders/notifications to employees for schedules, shifts, clock-outs, and more.
7Shifts is the best employee schedule maker for restaurants. It designed to helps restaurant managers schedule, evaluate, and communicate with their workforce.
This platform also offers a free plan for their prospective customers. Its features including employee scheduling & notifications, staff availability, leave management, and time clock app. However, the free plan is only limited to 10 employees and 1 location.
For employees, this system lets them to requests for time off, manage their availability, and request a shift exchange. But unlike Homebase, all of these processes require manager approval.
There is also a time clock app named 7Punches that serves as an easy-to-use, secure, time-clocking punch pad for your employees. With this app, employees can clock-in and out using their Punch ID. While managers can view the timesheets.
The most interesting thing about the free plan from 7Shifts is the Staff Engagement Dashboard. Because through the Dashboard, you will get a singular view of your team’s engagement with aggregate stats on lates, no shows, sick times, dropped shifts, tenure, and more.
In addition, there is also basic reporting feature that allows you to create easy reports. So through this feature, you can create scheduled hours and wages and your staff attendance.
To make the scheduling process faster and easier, 7Shifts provides mobile apps that are available on Play Store (for Android) and App Store (for IOS). With this app, managers can easily access to the schedule on the go and sort it by time, roll, employee and department.
7Shifts offers employee scheduling features that are quite complete in their free plan. In addition, the staff engagement dashboard really makes managers easier to control their employees.
The main drawback of the free plan of 7Shifts is the limited number of employees and location. So this free employee schedule maker is only suitable for small businesses that have up to 10 employees. In addition, there is no integration with payroll systems.
Opensimsim is another feature-rich free employee schedule maker on the market. But unlike Homebase and 7Shifts, there is no time clock app in their free plan. Its core features including employee scheduling, team messaging, time-off management, and integration with POS systems.
In this platform, employees are able to set their reoccurring or one-off availability to help you schedule. In addition, employees are able to request time-off to be approved by managers. There is also an optional feature to allow your staff to swap their shifts to other employees.
For managers, they can post open shifts, invite employees to apply the shifts or be auto-approved. Managers can also block days from time off requests.
In addition, there are also other interesting features such as create labor cost & budget, employee & position level pay rates, and team messaging.
The mobile apps from Opensimsim are available on the Android and iOS platforms. The most interesting thing about this app is the shift reminders. Unlike the mobile app from Homebase and 7Shifts, with this app employees will get upcoming shift reminders to prevent absences.
This software covers all needed in employee scheduling. And the most interesting thing about this free software is that there are no restrictions on the number of employees and locations.
There is no time clock app.
Sling is another free employee schedule maker that provides all core functions of employee scheduling. It’s one of the easiest ways to schedule and communicate with your employees. Most importantly, for free!
This platform lets your employees sign up for shifts they’d like to work by scheduling available shifts. You can either let employees pick the shifts on the first-come, first-served basis, or approve the applicants yourself.
Employees can also offer their shifts to someone and avoid another employee grabbing it before they have a chance to.
In addition, employees can make time-off requests. Then the manager(s) will receive a notification of time-off request and can approve or deny it.
Another interesting feature that rarely found in other similar free software is a simple task management tool. It’s a great tool to communicate things that need to be done during a shift.
Sling also provides free mobile apps to help managers and employees stay informed at any time and anywhere. In addition, they can manage employee schedules, time-off requests, availability, and shift offers.
With this app, employees get a notification up to 24 hours before the start of their shift. So they always know when it’s time to head to work.
The main advantage of the free plan of Sling is the complete employee scheduling feature. In addition, this platform is like a combination of employee scheduling software and task management software, all in one place. For Free!
Unlike Opensimsim, there are no labor costing & budgeting features. Also, unlike Homebase and 7Shifts, this platform doesn’t provide a time clock app in their free plan.
When I Work
When I Work offer a free plan with basic features such as employee scheduling, team availability, and team communication. Most importantly, this platform has the ability to helps you create employee schedules and prevent errors.
In this platform, if your employee can’t make it to their shift, you can find a replacement to quickly find another employee who can work the shift. Then everyone chosen by you get a text message, mobile alert and/or email asking them to cover the shift. The first employee to accept the shift will be automatically assigned the shift to their schedule.
For employees, if they are unable to work one of their shifts, they can give it to someone (drop the shift). Also, they can trade shifts with other coworkers (swap shifts). However, the shift is still their responsibility until it is picked up by someone.
Another interesting thing about this free software is the chat app. It allows you to send a message as a private message or in a group chat.
The employee scheduling feature is quite complete and there is no restriction on the number of employees. In addition, the messaging system makes it very easy for the team to communicate.
Firstly, you can only schedule up to 10 days in advance. Secondly, there is no labor costing and budgeting features. Thirdly, there is no time clock app.
As a conclusion, Homebase is the best free employee schedule maker that we have ever tried. Because of its free plan provides almost all functions required for employee scheduling. Although there are no notifications or reminders of upcoming shifts to employees.
But the shortcomings of Homebase can still be overcome by employees by always checking their schedules either via the web or through the mobile app.
However, if you have businesses with more than one location, Opensimsim and Sling are good alternatives for you. Because they do not limit the number of employees and locations on their free plan.
Meanwhile, 7shifts is a good alternative for those of you who run the restaurant. Because in addition to 7Shifts it was designed for restaurants, this platform provides enough reporting features to help managers to manage employee schedules and labor costs.
And the last point, When I Work is also a good alternative for those of you who have a lot of employees. Because this platform doesn’t limit the number of employees in their free plan. In addition, there is a chat app for you who needs a tool that can facilitate team communication.