Updated · Aug 03, 2022
Best for: Fast-growing businesses
What Is Deputy?
Deputy is an app that helps workplace managers fulfill their obligations. It simplifies employee scheduling, timesheets, tasking, and communication.
In 2000, a businessman named Steve Shelley sought a software tool to help him manage his growing workforce. He wasn’t satisfied with existing solutions, so he partnered with a programmer named Ashik Ahmed to build one. In 2008, Steve and Ashik formally launched Deputy for other businesses to use.
Over 320,000 companies across the globe currently use Deputy. It has built a formidable business on the back of over $100 million in venture capital funding.
Deputy is quite the comprehensive solution, so let’s check out its most important features:
One of the essential processes that workplace managers and HR staff must handle is employee onboarding. It entails integrating a new employee into the organization, and Deputy helps you do that.
You can create digital forms that new employees will fill out to provide needed details. This feature prevents important personal information from being lost or misplaced. You also don't need to worry about hard-to-read handwriting or chasing signatures.
As a manager, you can initiate the onboarding process for a new employee by entering their name, email, and mobile. Afterward, the app sends an invitation (via email or SMS) containing a unique link to the employee’s onboarding profile. From this profile, they complete five required forms:
- Personal Details
- Bank Details
- TFN Declaration
- Emergency Contact
- and Superannuation.
Once the employee fills out their forms, Deputy automatically saves the data to their profile. As an employer, you can access it at any time.
The Deputy employee onboarding feature is a great way to keep a digital record of your workers’ details. It also replaces the need for paper filing systems.
It’s difficult to manage workers whose duties are divided into shifts. But with its drag-and-drop tools, Deputy makes shift scheduling easy.
You can delegate shifts to each employee profile. You can select a specific number of hours or assign distinct roles and locations. When you’re done, every employee will get a notification of the shift assigned to them. Anytime you change the schedule, you can ensure workers see the update by requesting confirmation.
The app lets you export employee shift details for informational or storage purposes. For example, you can print out the shift table to paste it on a notice board. You can also download it as a CSV soft copy file to store on your device or send to other people.
Sometimes, employees can request time off, leaving you shorthanded. In such situations, you can let other workers swap shifts within the app to keep the workflow going.
The Deputy shift scheduling feature can help you comply with federal, state, and local labor laws. You can arrange mandated break times, paid time off, overtime pay, etc. It also helps you monitor staff attendance and breaks. The app flags any missed or unscheduled breaks, so you can proactively manage unexpected compliance risks.
Another good thing we observed is the AI-powered Deputy auto-scheduling feature. It helps you predict future demand and plan schedules accordingly. With it, you can auto-build schedule templates to handle demand trends, such as forecasted sales, delivery orders, and foot traffic.
The Deputy task scheduling feature lets you create and assign tasks or checklists to individual employees straight from your dashboard. It can be one-off tasks or regular jobs that they’ll automatically repeat. Staff can keep track of their assigned tasks through the Deputy mobile app.
You can monitor all tasks from the central dashboard. A color code makes it simple to see which ones are done and when they were completed. Likewise, this color code makes it easy to spot incomplete jobs.
You can create templates for common tasks, e.g., cleaning checklists, so you don't have to input them repeatedly.
Among the best ways to improve employee job satisfaction is by collecting feedback and acting on it. Hence, Deputy provides a valuable tool to help you receive feedback from workers at the end of each shift.
If you have a large workforce, gathering feedback manually will likely be futile. But, employees can voice their complaints in the app at any time, making it easy to keep track of them. With a meticulous record of employee concerns, it’s easy to act on the most common ones and keep your team engaged and happy.
Monitoring employee performance is essential to any business. The Deputy app lets you assign performance ratings to each employee profile that you can track over time for reviews.
Performance ratings are often the primary consideration for office promotions. Therefore, the platform provides a great service by letting you keep accurate ratings, so workers get the promotion they merit.
Deputy lets you assign specific leave times to each employee profile. Afterward, employees can keep track of their leave balances and request time off directly through the app. As a manager, you can see every leave request and approve or reject them from a central dashboard.
Time and Attendance Tracking
Deputy makes tracking employee attendance and time clock-ins seamless. You can see who’s on shift and who’s on break in real-time. If a team member can’t make their shift, you can find a replacement with one click.
Deputy is one of the few workforce management apps with a touchless clock-in tool. Employees can start and end their shifts quickly with facial recognition or voice commands. To enable this feature, they must download a separate app on an iPad or Android tablet – called Deputy Kiosk and Time Clock, respectively.
Deputy can automatically calculate payrolls. All you need to do is set the specific pay structure (e.g., $20 per hour). Then, the app will assess the number of hours an employee has clocked in and calculate their pay accurately.
This feature can also save your company hours on payroll administration, avoid double-entry of data, and reduce errors.
Note that Deputy helps you calculate payroll but doesn’t facilitate the payments to your staff. Nonetheless, it has direct integration with popular payroll software such as Gusto and Xero to handle that task.
With Deputy, you can make sure your employees don’t miss important information.
The app has a News Feed that all staff members can access. You can post announcements in both text and video, depending on which one passes the specific information better.
Employees can also message each other. When researching for this Deputy review, we noticed that users often commended the app for fostering workplace collaboration.
Deputy generates detailed reports concerning different aspects of your business. The app lets you compare scheduled hours against timesheet hours to gauge productivity. You can also analyze wage costs and sales to measure profitability and find ways to improve if needed.
Health and Safety
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, Deputy implemented a feature for health and safety checks. The app can verify employee wellness before shifts via a self-report questionnaire.
For example, you can ask employees if they’ve had symptoms resembling a COVID infection. If so, you can prevent them from starting a shift and notify management to take further measures.
Though this method isn’t perfect, it considerably aids in maintaining workplace safety.
One of the best things about Deputy is its integrations with third-party apps to gain additional functionalities.
Common ones include Square, QuickBooks, and Gusto.
Square is a payment processor for businesses. You can use sales data from your Square dashboard to forecast employee schedules on Deputy. You can also sync employee data between both platforms.
QuickBooks is the most popular business accounting software globally. It lets you manage payroll, taxes, budgets, etc. You can sync timesheet data from Deputy into QuickBooks to calculate payroll precisely.
Gusto is a dedicated payroll app serving over 200,000 businesses worldwide. Similarly, you can sync timesheets from Deputy into Gusto to determine payments.
Both administrators and normal employees can download the Deputy mobile app on the iOS or Android platforms. Hence, administrators can manage schedules and stay connected with their team on the go. They can create and deploy shift schedules on the mobile app just as they’ll do on the web-based interface. You can also monitor staff attendance and time clock-in from the app.
Deputy uses some sophisticated protocols to ensure the privacy and security of user data. The app runs on Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud infrastructure spread across Australia, the UK, and the US. AWS has a strong reputation concerning security and provides a 99.99% uptime guarantee.
Enterprises can also enable multi-factor authentication as a login requirement to prevent unauthorized access to their internals.
Ease of Use and Interface
User-written Deputy reviews often say that the platform has a complicated interface. We found it largely true during our product testing.
The first step to using Deputy is creating an account. You can do so with your email or by linking directly to your existing Facebook, Google, Apple, or Xero account. We liked that the platform provides many registration options.
Users can create new business accounts or sign up for an individual profile and join a workplace. The former option requires you to jump through considerably more hoops than the latter.
After providing some details (business name, type, contacts), you can immediately access the Deputy dashboard. Take a step back because this dashboard can be difficult to understand for people lacking experience with similar software. Its feature-richness makes the interface quite cluttered.
As a first-time user, you should try and play around with the app’s features to get familiar with it. Do this repeatedly, and navigating the dashboard will become much easier.
If you’re an individual user, setting up an account is easy. The primary thing you need is an invitation link from your existing workplace. You can access your dashboard immediately after accepting the invitation.
The simplest way to navigate issues is through the official Help Center. It contains comprehensive guides and how-tos concerning all aspects of the platform. It has text articles, webinars, and video tutorials, so you can choose which one suits you best.
If the Help Center doesn’t satisfy you, you can lodge a ticket with Deputy’s support team. The company responds through email, typically within 48 hours. Furthermore, you can chat with the company’s support staff live from your dashboard.
According to user testimonials, Deputy provides excellent customer support, marking one of the app’s main benefits.
The company offers a free plan, albeit with significant limitations. It allows a maximum of 100 shifts and 100 timesheets per month. Hence, you’ll need a paid version to make the best use of the Deputy scheduling app. There are four such options: Scheduling, Time and Attendance, Premium, and Enterprise.
Aimed specifically at easing the scheduling process, this plan provides auto-scheduling, tasking, and communication features, plus unlimited shifts.
Another specialized plan, this one offers: unlimited timesheets, payroll integration, and PTO and leave management.
This version gives you unlimited shifts and timesheets and combines all the features of the first two options.
Deputy Review – Verdict
We consider Deputy a very good workforce management app. It takes away a lot of the pain involved in managing employees, predominantly in large companies. The scheduling software makes it easy to assign shifts to workers and monitor their compliance. It also helps gather feedback and act on it to keep your team happy and engaged.
Nonetheless, it has its flaws. The user interface needs a lot of improvement to make it simpler to understand. We also think the company should add more third-party app integrations to provide additional functionalities.
That said, using Deputy can go a long way in helping you maintain a cheerful workforce.
How does the Deputy app work?
Deputy is a comprehensive solution for workforce management. It helps employers and managers schedule shifts and leaves, calculate payments, track goals and performance, and much more. You can access the platform through a desktop or via its mobile apps.
Does Deputy track your location?
Yes, but with explicit permission. The app uses the GPS locator in smartphones to record an employee’s whereabouts after they log into work.
What is the Deputy app used for?
You can use it for many workforce management purposes, including employee scheduling, time and attendance tracking, and communication. Deputy reviews often commend the app for having a comprehensive feature set.
Does Deputy take screenshots?
No, the app doesn’t take unwarranted screenshots of your device.
Deyan has been fascinated by technology his whole life. From the first Tetris game all the way to Falcon Heavy. Working for TechJury is like a dream come true, combining both his passions – writing and technology. In his free time (which is pretty scarce, thanks to his three kids), Deyan enjoys traveling and exploring new places. Always with a few chargers and a couple of gadgets in the backpack. He makes mean dizzying Island Paradise cocktails too.
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