Filling Department Shifts – Online Scheduling

July 4 represents an especially difficult time in staffing fire departments. Summertime vacations, wild land fire staffing and holiday activities can take career, part time and volunteer staff away during one of the most active times for fire departments. Departments can expect the increase in calls for EMS and Fire related incidents that occur during holiday periods, the use of fireworks can spark an increase in the number of small wild land fires in the district, and local events provide the opportunity for community outreach but require manpower. Fire Department Staffing at this time is most critical. Using netDuty Online Scheduling, Staff Scheduling for your department can be easier. Here are some of our tools: Availability Calendar: Volunteers and part timers can submit their own availability. netDuty provides an approval process, if required, and displays the staff members out of town on the calendar. As dates approach, managers can review available staff members and know the availability of their off duty personnel.     Filling Shifts: Call Out Requests can be submitted for specific duties on specific days, which emails qualified staff of opportunities and needs in the current schedule. Staff members may submit their offers and the officer making the selection may rank staff to choose the most equitable assignment, the most senior or through a rotating list of assignments.     Below Minimum Alerting: All staff members have access to the schedule and are able to view alerts on the days where staffing is most needed. Volunteers can be brought into the scheduling needs decision making for the department, part timers can know when they most may be needed, and career staff may be able to judge the likelihood of vacation requests being approved.   Opt in availability: Staff members may indicate that they are available and want to be assigned shifts.  Staff members may assign or remove themselves from these shifts reflecting their availability.  Managers may simply swap them in to a shift as needs dictate.  Staff members are then notified through email they have been assigned. All of these options are available in netDuty – Scheduling, starting at $49/month.  Call today for a 30 day Free Trial. netDuty Online 1.866.222.6518 sales@dutycalendar.com  ...

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Affordable Care Act for Part Time Firefighters

For departments with part time employees, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act will require extra monitoring and record keeping of the hours staff member’s hours. A measurement period is chosen by employers of between 3 and 12 months and the hours a staff member is compensated for must be measured and analyzed to determine employee status and the applicability of employer based health care. Combination departments, or departments using a large number of part time staff, may not anticipate or be able to pay for this additional mandate, and therefore must ensure the hours they assign their part time staff for do not exceed the thresholds. For firefighters in particular, this can be a difficult task to manage because part time staff can be paid for unscheduled time on duty. The threshold for part time staff can be 130 hours per month. If a part time staff member is scheduled for 120 hours during a month, but a series of fire and/or medical incidents requiring additional staffing may occur during that month and may push that firefighter over the 130 hour limit. Regularly recalculating a staff member’s hours can be cumbersome. With netDuty Online, part time staff members can be grouped, and should their anticipated hours for a month go above 130 hours, either by scheduled shifts or a combination of scheduled and unscheduled shifts, your administrative staff can be alerted. You are then able to adjust your department’s schedule to ensure that part time staff members stay below the threshold. The earlier you are warned, the easier it is to make adjustments. You don’t want to lose the response of part time staff members in an emergency, but you can’t take on the additional costs with this law. See more how netDuty Online can help you maintain compliance with the Affordable Care Act for your Fire...

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