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A time and attendance software will give you the tools you need to increase efficiency and reduce costs related to tracking time. To avoid overspending on overhead costs to manage your workforce time reporting, or to just better understand your time and attendance options such as what benefits they can provide, you're in the right place.
This guide will offer information on the following topics:
Time and attendance software allows employees to clock in and out via an electronic method, such as timeclocks, a web-browser, a mobile device, and more. Employers are able to monitor their employees during working hours by viewing when their working hours are, whether they have fully worked their scheduled shift, when they are assigned breaks are, and what overtime the employee has been putting in.
Sometimes grouped together within HR software, time and attendance systems provide more functionality then just time in and time out. They will also control labor costs by ensuring your payroll software is calculating the correct payment figures for employees. For businesses that work at multiple locations, geolocation and geofencing features can ensure your employees are at the job site when they are supposed to be. Employee benefits can also be monitored by recording how much vacation or PTO (paid time off) they've accumulated, and management can create labor reports that give real-time data on employee time metrics.
Most time and attendance solutions will require employees to punch in for the day by swiping a card, detecting their presence through RFID tracking, or scanning a part of them through biometric features. These methods help reduce errors, improve employee morale, and give your employees a greater sense of empowerment.
Time and attendance may already be a feature offered by your payroll system. Improved management of the task through a dedicated software can contribute to your company's overall efficiency, your employee satisfaction, and your ability to gain insights into your employees' business contributions.
A strong timekeeping program can help you achieve the following benefits:
Enabling your employees to punch in/out themselves in a time and attendance system will create a central repository of all employee hours. Timekeeping information in a digital format can be quickly transferred to payroll tools in one batch--meaning your staff does not need to spend time calculating hours worked from hard copies of timesheets.
If you outsource your payroll, a time and attendance system will allow you to send a batch file with all employee hours to your payroll processor. You can also quickly print hard copies of time reports from these systems. Regardless of how you are processing your payroll, the main benefit of time and attendance software is reducing overhead costs associated with workforce management.
Manual time tracking methods lend themselves to human error, such as inputting the wrong figures. This results in inaccurate timesheets, whether these errors are made intentionally or unintentionally. Falsification and inaccuracies on timesheets can cost your company large sums of money, as well as lost man hours spent on manual tasks. A time and attendance solution will ensure that your profits aren't being eaten away by paying staff for hours they did not work.
A digital time clock that requires employees to punch in/out using a unique code can help eliminate these issues. This can also avoid the issue of proxy attendance, or "buddy punching" (an employee who is allowing another to punch them in/out). You can eliminate the issue of proxy attendance by implementing biometric or card-swipe time clocks. These clocks will either require employees to have an ID card to punch in/out or it will read a biometric feature of their body, such as their fingerprint or a retinal scan. Some biometric time clocks can also read palm prints and veins in your hands.
A time and attendance system you will give you the information needed to stay on top of employee activity. Examples include:
This data allows you to identify upcoming issues before they occur. If you have employees located on a job site, a time and attendance system will allow you to monitor their hours--both on-site and off-site. This information will then allow you to determine their productivity and ensure that you are making a profit on the job.
If your time tracking system is used for the sake of billing, you may require employees clock-in to different job codes, depending on the work they are currently on. This type of time tracking system will allow you to track what each staff member is doing at any given point. Activity information will in-turn allow you to make adjustments to tasks assigned to individual staff members and ensure that you're productivity is maximized.
Your company may have secure facilities that require you control access. One common use for a time and attendance system is as a security device. You can connect time clocks to electronic security systems allowing you to control employee movement. This will require each employee to hold the required credentials before giving them access a particular area of your facilities.
Once they access this restricted location, you will be able to track exactly where they were and for how long. This will allow you to ensure that your most valuable research and development projects and other sensitive information is protected from outside eyes.
Once you decide to implement a time and attendance system you have a number of deployment options. The goal with any time and attendance package is to streamline labor management. To that end, the software must be able to communicate time data to your payroll processing tool.