Case Studies

How Streets Team Enterprises empowers the homeless with Workforce.com

By Gustav Anderson

Dec. 13, 2021

1,200 – this is the number of full-time jobs people have found with the help of Streets Team Enterprises. 

“We work with people who are in homeless shelters, we work with people who are actually living in their cars. And so one of our goals is to get them housed,” says Tawny Williams, an HR generalist for Streets Team Enterprises.

Operating in 13 different cities throughout California’s Bay Area, the non-profit’s mission is to help the homeless learn valuable life skills, become employed full-time, and eventually, find housing. To accomplish this, Streets Team Enterprises executes its secondary goal: cleaning polluted Californian city streets. 

Typically operating with around 40 part-time employees, Streets Team Enterprises leads teams of homeless in community cleaning and public works efforts. Employees work between 15-25 hours a week, receiving hard-earned living wages that help them on the path to getting homes of their own. 

For Streets Team Enterprises, their mission is about much more than providing jobs and cleaning local communities. What their program offers is hope – hope for new beginnings and hope for achieving dreams. 


CHALLENGE

To prepare their team members for the job market, Streets Team Enterprises focuses on developing professionalism and technological savvy. To succeed in the modern workforce, learning to use mobile applications is essential. However, doing so does not always come easy for some employees at Streets Team Enterprises.

“One of the biggest things I wanted to work on when I got there was to start holding them accountable,” says Williams. “If we truly want to get them work-ready, they need to learn how to use apps on the phone.”

Honing these skills required an overhaul of Streets Team Enterprises’ time and attendance system. New software like this would not only optimize administrative tasks but it would also serve as a valuable training tool for their employees. 

Streets Team Enterprises recognized that above all else, their new software system needed to be intuitive as they often work with elderly and technologically challenged people. Moreover, high turnover exists due to employees consistently graduating into full-time work. To ensure fast and successful employee onboarding, a simple interface was a must-have. 

On the administrative side of things, Streets Team Enterprises required accurate timesheet recording and exporting capabilities. They also needed a system that made it easy to stay in compliance with strict California break laws. 


SOLUTION

Streets Team Enterprises joined forces with Workforce.com to deliver an effective and  user-friendly mobile app for employees to track their time on. Workforce.com also provides an in depth desktop experience via a dashboard where managers can accurately handle timesheets and compliance across the organization. With their new workforce management system, everything is centrally located on a single cloud-based platform, allowing management to make changes and monitor situations in real-time.


RESULTS

Streets Team Enterprises are making a difference in communities everywhere. Cities are and lives are being changed every day, and it all starts with intuitive and effective workforce management. Here are some of the many areas in which Streets Team Enterprises have experienced success since partnering with Workforce.com:

Quick adoption of the mobile app

Upon rolling out the software, workers were understandably apprehensive. Many of them had never used smartphones before, let alone an app for clocking in and out of work. However, the interface proved easy to navigate, with all employees learning essential functions very quickly. 

“So the app itself, the once you get in, it’s easy. I mean, it literally blows your mind,” says Williams regarding the ease at which employees adopted Workforce.com’s mobile app.  

Efficient and accurate exporting of timesheets

Whenever needed, Streets Team Enterprises can easily export accurate and digestible timesheets. This capability is essential as it provides important information for employees, county governments, and independent auditors. 

“The counties get credit for working with workforce development programs like ours. They need exact time sheets … with Workforce.com, I can print out [employee] timesheets and I can use that information.”

Improved employee engagement and accountability 

“Workforce.com has helped our older fellows build autonomy,” says Williams, reflecting upon the impact the software has on developing employee job readiness and technological skill.

Since adopting the new system, nearly all employees approve their own timesheets accurately and on time, with it all taking place on a single platform that Williams can actively monitor. 

“By the time I log in on Monday, for the most part, all [timesheets] are done,” says a relieved Williams. “I maybe only have one or two that aren’t.”

Better break law compliance

To stay compliant with California break laws, Streets Team Enterprises needs to make sure its workers clock out of their shifts on time. If someone works past five hours in a day, Streets Team Enterprises must pay them a break penalty. The software provides tools like the Notes feature to make compliance even easier. 

“In the state of California, you can do a lunch waiver if you work less than six hours,” says Williams. “So for those employees that I really have to make sure I stay in compliance with, we’ve just had them fill a waiver.”

Williams denotes under certain timesheets when an employee has voluntarily waived their lunch break, democratizing compliance with meticulous California break laws.


With Workforce.com, time-consuming administrative tasks are now automated, allowing Streets Team Enterprises to dedicate more time to the betterment of the Bay Area. Not only are they cleaning the streets, but they are enabling people to pursue their dreams through the development of accountability and autonomy – essential stepping stones on the road to housing and full-time employment.

Gustav is a communications officer with Workforce.com. His past work includes media outreach for a Guinness World Record team and market research published by the University of Maine. He has a keen interest in storytelling, frontline labor issues, and all things relating to pigeons.

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