PFM Scheduling Services was originally created as an arm of the Alberta Innovates Center for Machine Learning (AICML) in 2002. What started as a way to augment machine learning research quickly transitioned into the development of commercial inventions and solutions to combat real-world challenges. As a result, PFM was established to design implementation tools and processes that would optimize the efficiency of schedule production and management.
PFM is well-recognized in the industry for its Solver Software, a solution that accommodates hundreds of rules (both union and customized), to simultaneously produce entirely compliant schedules and budgets that meet quality standards.
Clients can also benefit from PFM’s process design services that work in tandem with powerful automation software. PFM leverages business intelligence, user-friendly automation, and rotation analytics to produce the best scheduling experience possible.
PFM Scheduling Services was met with the challenge of automating the schedule management process for several unique industries. An effective schedule management process is one that includes schedule creation, compliance evaluation, and operational optimization for the business model.
Prior to the creation of automated and intelligent systems, users relied on strictly manual processes to accomplish these routine tasks. Unfortunately, these manual processes proved to be time consuming, resulting in long queues for new schedule creation (even when business moved quickly). Moreover, the compliance verification was prone to basic human errors.
Many times, the initial process was left unfinished, which resulted in multiple process iterations. The requirement of manually uploading schedules into a schedule maintenance and time-keeping system was not only tedious but highly prone to mistakes, which resulted in the need to manually check data inputs on more than one occasion.
These common pain points led to the creation of an intuitive software suite that greatly reduces common errors and improves productivity and efficiency.
To begin, PFM partnered with a potential customer to fully understand the complexity of the technical requirements needed for such an in-depth project. Additionally, the team wanted to develop a user process that was not only intuitive for schedulers but also comprehensive in its capacity and functionality.
PFM designed a user interface that would provide critical business intelligence alongside features that alleviated the burden of non-value added tasks (such as manual data input). By planning for the future, PFM also developed an Optimizer Module that delivered key performance indicators (KPIs) to users; these KPIS aided in improving the holistic Schedule Management Process.
Prior to PFM’s development, there was no scheduling software on the market that had the capacity, capability, and functionality needed to meet such complex needs. Having the ability to export and email schedules (that were also checked for compliance) became a valuable communication tool for other internal customers.
Throughout the development process for the scheduling modules, PFM established a high level of trust and credibility, which inspired the confidence needed to acquire customers with budgets in the billions.
The initial problem-solving approach was developed with the intellectual capital of the Alberta Machine Intelligence Institute, a world-class artificial intelligence organization. PFM’s proprietary approach is the only one on the market capable of accommodating hundreds of rules and millions of variables to produce a budget and rule-compliant scheduling framework.
PFM’s scheduling optimization tools take machine learning and automation to the next level. This proprietary technology has led to impressive results for customers in multiple industries, including union, healthcare, manufacturing, transportation, and corporate business.
The reduction in schedule creation and compliance evaluation was reduced by 92% when utilizing the PFM Software Suite versus a traditional or manual process.
Schedule builder productivity was increased 11.8 to 18.5-fold. PFM customers can leverage intelligent features to validate existing schedules, produce new schedules, or optimize schedules in as little as a few minutes.
Three of PFM’s schedule builders constructed 130 schedules in 5 days and stated they could not have accomplished this without the PFM Scheduling Suite.
For professionals with complex scheduling needs, PFM’s use of intelligent features and AI-powered analytics make it easy to operate from any location, eliminate overspending, reduce HR expenses, and increase team productivity. Each of these benefits also contributes to improved employee morale, which is a perk for employers looking to improve retention.
“With PFM, I finally found exactly what I had been looking for by way of schedule optimization. I can now meet my budget targets and avoid spending money we do not have. The technical support is also brilliant!” –T. Dillashaw (Director of Operations)
RELATED USE CASES
PFM has other related use cases that rely on business intelligence and automation to succeed. One example is the Checker Module (a rule compliance evaluation functionality), that is used by clients to evaluate employer schedules for union members. The ability to export a schedule from PFM facilitates better communication between the union and the employers. Since both the union and employer leverage PFM, rule interpretation is consistent across the board.
Industry needs are rapidly changing, and artificial intelligence and machine learning solutions can contribute to better automated processes for all involved. The results of intuitive scheduling not only safeguard against compliance violations, but they can also offer technology solutions for workplaces that need to modernize outdated or mismanaged processes.
As more industries begin to utilize the power of AI automation tools, businesses can grow through increased productivity, reduced costs, and better worker protections. These factors are critical for any business looking to expand and endure as the marketplace adapts to new regulations.
Are you interested in learning more about scheduling and process optimization? Get started by contacting us directly to get connected with the PFM team (and many more AI companies) and discuss your unique scheduling goals.
- AIP Team