How do I use the budget-to-actual report?
The budget-to-actual report is a powerful tool that helps you answer the following questions:
- In which locations have we scheduled more or fewer people than what is in our service agreement?
- Are our labor rates higher than our budgeted rates?
- Are people working more or fewer hours than they have been assigned?
In order to get the most value out of the budget-to-actual report, you'll need to make sure that your scheduled shifts reflect your service agreement and the cost you expect to incur for each shift.
- Go to Admin > Manage Locations and click the pencil icon next to the location you need to set a budget for.
- Under Shift Information and next to "Budgeted cleaners per shift", type the number of cleaners that should be assigned to the shift. This number can be a fraction (like 2.5), but in most scenarios a whole number makes better sense.
- Type in the hourly labor rate and currency. We currently support an hourly calculation of cost, so if your cost is fixed you will need to divide it by the number of hours in the shift to back into an hourly rate.
- Save the location information.
Setting Employee Pay Rates
Employee pay rates are used for two things in the budget-to-actual report. First, they are used to calculate what the estimated hours should be based on how the calendar looks. Second, they are used in calculating actual cost based on actual hours logged when the employee clocks in. Pay rates are set in each employee's profile:
- Go to Admin > Manage Users and click the pencil icon next to the user you would like to set a pay rate for.
- Under User Pay Rates, click the "Add new" button to add a new rate. You'll enter a start and end date for the rate. As an option, if you set up standard pay rates under Admin > Company Settings, you can pick from those standard rates when creating a user rate.
- If you enter a rate that overlaps an existing rate for the user, an error message will let you know that you may need to adjust the dates that each rate applies so that there is no overlap.
- Save the user information.
Understanding the Budget to Actual Report
Scheduled vs. Assigned vs. Actual
These labels are color coded and correspond to figures in the grid of the budget-to-actual report.
- Scheduled: Scheduled hours reflect the shifts that have been created in Clean Smarts. For example, if you scheduled a four-hour shift that happens five times a week for a single cleaner, your budgeted hours would be 20. NOTE: Scheduled hours only appear if you select "By Location" in the report settings at the top of the report. This is because we must lump all employee time together in order to make a comparison of assigned and actual time against each location's scheduled (budgeted) time.
- Assigned: These are the hours that cleaners have been assigned, and the cost is each user's pay rate multiplied by those hours. If scheduled hours are greater than assigned hours, then it might mean you are understaffed. If assigned hours are greater than scheduled hours it might be an indication of inefficiency. If scheduled and assigned hours are equal but assigned costs are higher than scheduled, then your staff are working at a higher rate than you budgeted for that account.
- Actual: These are actual hours logged in the system via mobile app or other check-in method, and the actual costs are those hours multiplied by user pay rates. If actual hours are greater than assigned hours, then your employees are working longer hours than expected. The scheduled and assigned hours may be too low for the amount of work required of them, or they may not be working efficiently. If actual hours are lower than assigned hours, give that cleaner a bonus! However, it could also mean that employees are not spending adequate time cleaning.
The hourly differences in the budget-to-actual report have color backgrounds that serve as a visual indicator of their need of attention. The background color behind the Assigned column indicates the discrepancy between Assigned and the Scheduled hours. The background color behind the Actual column indicates the discrepancy between Actual and the Assigned hours. When there are no differences, each color indicator is a very light green. As numbers tend toward being over budget, they become more red. As they tend toward being under budget (which also can be a problem!) they become more orange. Scanning the report for bright red and orange field is a great way to see patterns and outliers in your data.
Powerful Grouping Options
Using the settings at the top of the screen, you can group hours and cost in unique ways.
- Rows can be grouped in one of three ways: By User, By User and Location, and By Location. Scheduled hours don't appear in the report if you group by user or by user and location.
- You can choose whether to group rows by pay code. You can also choose which pay codes to filter.
- You can group columns by workday or workweek. Note that the date provided is the date as of the end of the workday.