Layers are schedules with the same key components as members, handoff, rotation and slots. You can add multiple layers to one on-call schedule. This helps you give flexibility over timings and members.
Layers for your on-call schedule are organised sequentially in ascending order. This means when timing overlaps between Layer 2 and Layer 1, the higher layer will overlap the lower ones, i.e. in this case Layer 2 will overlap 1.
For 3 layers, Layer 3 will take overlap over 1 and 2.
In simple words - if both layers have common times then Layer 2 will overlap calendar schedules from layer 1. Let's take an example.
Here is a simple on-call schedule with 2 members rotating each day. This means one of the members is on-call every day covering for the entire week.
All days - Daily rotation among 2 members
This is how the calendar looks like with just the above layer in our on-call schedule
Now, this could be too much to handle. How about we give them a break over the weekend and ask other members to help out.
To enable this, we can add another layer with weekly rotation among members who only need to be on-call from Friday 6 PM to Monday 9 AM
Weekdays - Daily rotation among 2 members Weekends - One person for the entire weekend rotating weekly
Members from Layer 1 will be on-call every alternate day, on all weekdays and members from Layer 2 will be on-call for the entire alternate weekend (since weekly rotation has been applied).
This is how the calendar looks with both layers.
Members from Layer 2 will overlap the scheduled on-call from Friday 6 PM to Monday 9 AM.
You can start experimenting with layers by editing the same schedule as many times as you want.
Can I add a layer temporarily?
You can add a layer and then delete it. A common use case if a person needs to take the day off and someone else has agreed to cover them, then add a new layer to cover that day alone. Once the day is passed, delete the layer.
How many layers can I add?
There is no limitation. Our recommendation is to avoid adding too many layers. Otherwise, it could get confusing how the calendar works and as a result teams usually hesitate to delete any layer.
How many members can be added in one layer?
There is no limit here either.