main window is divided into four panels which are
selectable using the toolbar: People,
Events Panel is where you define the sorts of events
for whch schedules are required.
uses the term Event to mean a series of meetings (for a Church,
this could be Mass or a Worship Service) with the same role requirements
(the same roles and the same number of people required for those
roles). An Event is defined as occurring on arbitrary dates and/or
according to a regular pattern of dates. For example, Sunday 10AM
Service may be an event that occurs every Sunday and needs a Speaker,
Leader, 2xSingers, Organist and 2xUshers.
single Event can have one or more regular repeating patterns, and
one or more adhoc dates. Patterns and adhoc dates can also be excluded
from the event definition (all EXCEPT the date or pattern). SmartRoster
gives considerable flexibility in how you define your events.
Roles - An
event is defined as a repeating sequence of meetings that have the
same Role requirements. These role requirements are defined by clicking
the Roles button (or by adding Events into the "Applies to
Event" box in the main Roles panel).
People Panel is where you manage Individuals, Households,
and Groups. Select the tab corresponding to the type of entity you
wish to add, edit, or delete
You can easily find an entity by typing into the "Find"
box any part of a person's name or email address.
- is where you define the roles (a.k.a. skill, job, duty, ministry).
Roles correspond to specific skill sets to which individuals are allocated.
You can drag-and-drop names from the People panel into the Role Members
list. Role information is organised under three tab pages, General,
Members, and Notes. For each role a separate schedule will be added
to the Schedules panel (as long as Include on Roster is ticked).
role is a position, also called a Ministry, Duty, Qualification or
Skill, which needs to be filled by one or more suitably qualified
persons in order to stage an event (service, meeting, shift). For
example, in a Church Service, "Organist", "Overhead
Projectionist", or "Reader" may all be required roles.
Individuals may be assigned to one or more roles. When assigned to
a role, the individual (or another person) can nominate a desired
frequency of usage (such as once a week, twice a month, or 7 times
a year). The Automatic Scheduler uses this information to balance
the roster as fairly and appropriately as possible
For the purposes of the automatic scheduler, roles can be made compatible.
By default roles are incompatible. The same person cannot be allocated
to two incompatible roles on the same event date/time. By making roles
compatible you can allow for people to be scheduled to multiple roles
on the same event. You can even set the degree of compatibility -
so that the automatic scheduler will activitely try to put the same
individual into multiple roles, or require them to be on most roles
where they are available for both roles.
|Applies to Events...
By default, all roles are required by all events (services/meetings).
The "Appies to Events" list is used to restrict the events for
which a role is required. For each event you can define how many of each
kind of role is needed (or for all) and how many times/days/weeks/months
consecutively to roster the same person for this role, for this event.
this role allows you to temporarily prevent or allow a specific
role from being included in the current master schedule.
You add role members
into the Members tab of the Roles panel. They can be activated or
inactivated via the asterix column. If inactive, the automatic scheduler
will ignore them when building the schedule for that role. The various
role member parameters, such as Event, Fixed usage, whether they are
spare or trainees, and enforced break, can be edited by double-clicking
on a role-member. A role member can be scheduled manually or by the
Building the Schedule
- The Schedule Panel
you have set up your people (individuals, households, groups), roles,
and events, you can start constructing your schedule. SmartRoster
makes this easy, but even more important, it can automatically do
most of the work for you. The Automatic Scheduler is SmartRoster's
most powerful feature, the one that really sets it apart from the
first step in creating schedules is to set the time period to be covered
by the schedules.
There is no
limit as to the size of the duration you can set - a day, a few
months, ... a year - SmartRoster doesn't care!
can also view the schedule in the dates-by-names format:
can manually assign people to the schedules by drag-and-dropping them
from the Role Members list or from the People panel. Alternatively
right-mouse-click over a cell to get a list of people available in
this before running the automatic scheduler when you want to fix a
person to a schedule position, thus preventing the automatic scheduler
from assigning that position.
can also just to drag and drop names from one cell to another - just
like a spreadsheet! Hold down the control key while drag-and-dropping
to copy the name.
just move the mouse cursor over a name, and SmartRoster will highlight
that name every where it appears in the schedule! If a name appear
in red you can hover over the name to see which rule has been broken.
may manually allocate some or all events for a role (such as the Speaker
role for a Church Service, which would rarely be automatically allocated)
and you may even allocate all roles for some events (like a special
memorial service or holiday). SmartRoster allows you to lock in a
whole row, column, or cell at a time, or name in a cell. Auto Fill
will not re-allocate cells that are locked.
automatically assign people to all of your schedules, select Auto
Fill from the Schedules menu.
the Auto Fill Options dialog box you can set the Auto Fill priorities
(what to optimise) and end point (when to stop). The Automatic Scheduler
will then start generating great, non-conflicting schedules. It will
keep trying to improve the schedule untill the end point is reached.
You can stop it at any time and make any minor adjustments and changes
you want, including locking down part of the schedule and restarting
the scheduler. For instance you may like the result for a role or
roles. Just lock those roles and re-schedule to improved the remaining
Automatic Scheduler will assign all time slots not already assigned
and locked in. It will attempt to satisfy as many preferences as possible
while also meeting usage targets and filling vacancies (how many required
in each role/event combination).
most important report generated by SmartRoster is the Master Schedule
(see below). This is the report you will probably want to hand out
to your people. SmartRoster also generates Address Book reports that
you can use in your organization, and has many other reports, such
as address labels, reminder labels, Role-member lists (sometimes called
Rosters), Role and event distribution, Attendance, absences, and Personnel
report shows the master schedule for one household with personalized
shading of each person in that household. You can also generate
a personalized report which only has the specific roles a person
is serving in. Another useful report is the Event report which shows
each event occurrence (eg each service) on a single page with all
roles required and the names of those serving in those roles.
SmartRoster Viewer allows you to preview and print reports. You can
also save reports as pdf (Adobe acrobat) format for easy electronic
transmission or printing. You can also export a schedule directly
into MS Word®, which allows you to then edit the report before
printing it if you have this available on the PC running Smartroster..
provides as a core feature the ability to email reports, reminders,
and arbitrary messages and file attachments to individuals and households.
can send a report directly from the SmartRoster
simpy by clicking the email button.
This permits choice of recipient,
and an optional
text message, plus other document attachments.
may easily send bulk adhoc email which include your own message and
attachments to a list you select from individuals, households or groups
in your SmartRoster file. This list can be saved with a name for easy
can also select specific roles when selecting recipients, which allows
you to send a message only to people in specific roles.
is able to automatically or manually (when you choose) send reminders
to those people who have an email address.
In the reminders
number of days to look ahead when determining who to remind. The
list will automatically show with those due in that many days from
individuals to whom you wish to send a reminder. (You cannot select
those without an email. These people are included in the list for
your information only)
the email message using field codes which are substituted into each
individuals email message with the appropriate data
to start generate the actual email messages. These are queued in
the Email queue for sending. If you have AutoSend ticked then they
will also be sent. If not you can review the messages - and even
change them - before sending.
for David Anstey, the above substitutes as follows: "David
Anstey is scheduled in the following roles in the next 7 days: Sunday
ticking the "Check for reminders.." box, SmartRoster will
check for any reminders that are due in the number of days specified
each time you open this SmartRoster file. If reminders are due
then the Reminders dialog will display for your review and action.
you have SMS (texting) enabled (this is an purchase option) then you
can set the text message which also permits field codes as for normal
email messages. You can select for each individial whether they will
receive reminder via email, SMS text or both..
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