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Creating and Managing Routes
Creating and Managing Routes

Read this article to start building your routes for the schedule board!

Aspire Software avatar
Written by Aspire Software
Updated over a week ago

Table of Contents


Purpose

In Aspire, Routes describe a crew of employees set up to perform work on scheduled work tickets for a given time period.​

Multiple routes can be created underneath a manager, but only one crew leader can be assigned to a route.

Then, these routes are added to the Schedule Board to build out your team's working locations for the weeks to come!

This article talks about all things relating to Admin set up of routes, how to use optional settings for route optimization and sequencing and how those affect routes when they are added to the schedule board!


Requirements

✅To manage routes and edit the route Crew Members and Properties, you’ll need Edit Routes added to your user role. Users must also have Full Access to Schedule Board.

✅ To activate or deactivate a route, you must have the View Routes permission enabled for your user role.


Creating a New Route

  • Click on the Scheduling module.

  • If you have any routes currently in use, your routes will appear under the selected Manager's Name. At the top right of the screen, click the three dot menu. A drop down menu will appear. Select Manage Routes from the list.

  • The Manage Routes screen will appear, which will show any current routes in the system that you can edit. To add a new New Route, select the blue New Route button in the top right of the screen.

The New Route screen will look like this:

  • For the new route, enter the unique name of that route in Route Name.

🧠Tip: Keep the naming consistent. Examples of route names include:

  • Using the crew leader's name

  • Using the division or typical service performed within the route

  • Enter the Branch that this crew will be performing work under. Only one branch per route can be assigned.

  • Select the Manager who oversees this crew. Typically, this will be your Operations Manager.

📌Note: Managers won’t appear on the drop down for the route if the Manager has a different route assignment in their contact record! The manager’s contact record branch and the route branch must match in order for them to be assigned to the route!

Managers appear in the drop down at the top of the Scheduling screen:

  • Select the Crew Leader who will be responsible for supervising or performing this work. Only one crew leader can be assigned per route, and it is a required field.

  • Select the Division that represents the type of work this route will include. For example, Maintenance, Snow, Enhancement, Lawn Care.

📌 Note: This will be important to determine when setting up routes for Snow.

  • If needed, enter in a Percentage of Travel time.

Here’s an example:

If an estimator includes travel time to the customer's site, they will want to bill the customer for this time. However, this means the job should be completed in 9 hours and not 10.

  • To show the crew's 9 hours, put in 10% in for Percentage of Travel Time. This means when a 10 hour job is scheduled, Aspire will subtract 1 hour (10% of 10) from the schedule board as well as the Work Ticket screen in Aspire's mobile app.

  • Again, this means that the crew will only have 9 hours budgeted for the visit, but the customer will be charged for 10.

  • Enter in how many Man Hours per day the crew is expected to work. This is man hours per man, not the entire crew. 8 – 12 hours is normal.

  • Enter in how many employees will make up the crew in the Route Size.

🧠 The Man Hours Per Day field and Route Size field will be multiplied together to give your route its Daily Budgeted Hours. If work is scheduled on this route, and goes above the budgeted hours, the route will show red to tell your that the route is scheduled above capacity:

  • Enter in a Display Order.

The lower the number, the higher the route will appear on the schedule board. It is recommended to order all routes in multiples of 10. If the routes are numbered, 1,2,3, etc., then there is no space for when a new route is created and needs to be viewed higher up on the schedule board.

  • Select a color for the crew's route name to show in on the schedule board.

When your route visits are scheduled, the color you set will appear directly on the Schedule Board:

You have the option to set a Primary Vehicle that the crew on your route will use.

🧠 Aspire allows a primary vehicle to be tied to a route. This assists in supporting GPS equipment tracking for the route. The primary vehicle and the route is set up by selecting the equipment item representing the vehicle in the Primary Vehicle field.

After selecting an equipment item in the route details screen, you will see the Asset Number, Model, and Equipment Description.

📌Note: Each equipment being used at the Primary Vehicle can only be selected once and will need to be removed before it can be moved to a new route.

📑To learn about using Equipment Assets, click here.

  • Check the Show Daily Plan box if the Crew Leader assigned to that route should see the daily plan on the main screen of Aspire's mobile app when logged in.

    • The Daily Plan allows crew leaders to view the list of materials that will be required for the jobs they have scheduled for the day.

📑To learn about the Daily Plan in Aspire Mobile, click here.

  • Check the Allow Equipment Time Reporting box to allow Crew Leaders to allocate usage times for the equipment items that are defined in the item catalog and included on the estimate.

    • When equipment time is logged, it is tied to the employee work ticket time.

  • The Show New Ticket Button in Crew Mobile can be enabled on the route level, which allows your Crew Leader to create New tickets in Crew Mobile.

There are optional settings you can add to your route, which we will discuss below in other sections! Click below to skip to those sections:

  • Once you are finished making all edits to your Route, click Save in the upper right corner.


Adding Crew Members to a Route

Adding crew members to a route will automatically add the employees on the time entry screen for that route.

🧠This is optional, but is helpful when managing employee time and is frequently used with snow operations.

⚠️ It’s recommended to only set up crew on a route if you're not using Aspire's mobile app. You should not assign crew members if the route will have changing crews or crew members.

  • In the Scheduling module, on the Schedule Board, you can see the Crew Leader assigned to the route and any existing crew members assigned to the route.

  • You will also see the Route Size next to the Route Name which with a quick view, allows you to see if your route is fully staffed!

  • In the example below, you’ll see that John Joey is the Crew Leader of Camille’s Route, Camille is the Manager of this route and that the Route Size is set for 4 people; they will probably add another crew member onto the route before heading out for the work week!

To add Crew Members to your route, click the three dot menu on the Schedule Board and select Manage Routes. Choose your Route from the Route details screen.

  • On the bottom half of the screen, there is an option to select crew members from the drop down menu that work on this route.

  • Under the Crew Member section, click the Select One drop down menu. Select the crew members that belong on this route.

🧠If the crew member is not listed, then a Contact record with a Contact Type of Employee needs to be created. (To learn how to create a Crew Member contact, click here.)

  • Click Save to update the Route.

  • When you go back to the Schedule Board, you’ll see that the crew member list has been updated for the route!


Adding a Property to a Route

Adding a property to a route is often used for snow routes but can be used as well for other work performed during the summer months. This option is used when companies are not scheduling tickets on the schedule board for that route.

  • Click the three dot menu and select Manage Routes from the list.

  • The Manage Routes screen will appear. Select the route that should have a property assigned from the Route details screen.

  • In the Property section of the screen, click the + icon to Add Properties:

  • Select the properties for this route, and Aspire will automatically number the display order as you select properties.

  • If the order needs to be rearranged, click on the property to move and drag it to the desired order.

Here’s what that would look like:

  • Once your properties are added to your Route, select Save to apply your changes.


Adding Service or Service Types to a Route

Adding Services or Service Types to a route is often used for snow routes but can be used for other work performed during summer months.

🧠If no services are added, then the route can support all services and service types.

⚠️ This should only be used only with the adding properties to a route function.

On the Schedule Board screen, select Manage Routes from the list.

  • The Manage Routes screen will appear. Select the route that should have the service assigned.

  • Select whether the route will handle the service type or service. Then select the needed services or service types for this route.

  • Select Save once done with your Route.

Deciding if Your Route is Sequenced or Time-Based

📌Note: In order to choose between Sequenced routes or Time-Based routes, the Time-Based Scheduling checkbox must be enabled on the Branch record that the route is assigned to.

Two Types of Scheduling

Sequenced Scheduling has no start and end time, and instead is scheduled in a sequence and based on the man hours of a route. Available working days can be set up for sequence based routes. This is typically the default setting for companies in the Green industry.

Time-Based Scheduling requires working hours to be set up for visits that can be scheduled with a given start and end time. This is an option commonly used for companies in the Clean industry.

To set Sequenced or Time-based scheduling:

  • On the Schedule Board screen, select Manage Routes from the list.

  • The Manage Routes screen will appear. Select the route that should have the scheduling pattern assigned.

  • For Sequenced based visits, you can set the days of the week your route and crew are available for scheduling.

  • For the days you do not add to your Sequenced based schedule, they will appear as Unavailable on the Schedule Board for that route:

  • If your team schedules on a day that is an Unavailable day, they will have to confirm that they want to schedule a visit for that day.

To assign a Time-Based schedule for your route, start by selecting Time-Based and then, Add to Schedule to create your working schedule.

  • Then, you’ll be able to add your work schedule by day of the week and time of day that the route is able to complete services.

  • Once your Time-Based schedule is added, select Save to apply your schedule pattern to the route.

  • When you review the schedule board, you’ll see each days working hours and the time zone that is assigned to the Branch that the route is on.

For more information on Time-Based Scheduling, click here to read this article.


Deactivating Routes

In addition to creating and editing Routes, you might need to activate a route if the route is to be used for a new group of crew members. You might need to deactivate a route if it will no longer be used, or if it will be used in the future.

You can manually deactivate routes when on a Route detail screen, but if you need to complete this action for multiple routes, consider using a Bulk Action to complete your task efficiently.

  • Select the Scheduling module from the blue side menu.

  • Click on the three dot menu and select Manage Routes.

  • Select the checkbox of the routes that you want to activate or deactivate.

  • Click on the Bulk Actions menu and select Activate Routes or Deactivate Routes.

  • Select confirm to apply your changes.

⚠️ You can only complete Bulk Actions on routes that appear on the same screen, if you change pages on Routes will deselect everything from the previous page.

💡Once a Route is deactivated, it no longer appears on the Schedule Board. If you need it to reappear on the schedule board, simply reactivate the route!

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