How to Track Employee Time and Attendance

by | Mar 22, 2022

There are many ways you can track employee time and attendance. You can use a traditional time clock or manually input each employee from day to day to track the working hours, to name just a couple. However, these methods work if you have a small business or start-up, but aren’t practical for large corporations with hundreds of employees. 

This is where using Workforce Management Software can come in handy. Most have some form of attendance tracking functionality, a feature that can lower labor costs and even improve employee retention rates. We’ll discuss the options available to you and the best system for your business needs. But first, let’s take a look at why tracking is important.

The Importance of Tracking Employee Attendance and Time

There are a number of reasons why accurately tracking employee hours is important. Here are some common reasons to incorporate employee time tracking into your organization:

  • Ensure employees are working the total hours for which they’re being paid and avoid time theft
  • Measure the amount of time employees spend on a project or task (great for part time workers)
  • Make sure employees take required breaks and lunches
  • Enforce overtime rules
  • Improve payroll accuracy by ensuring timesheets are filled out correctly
  • Maintain regulatory compliance to wage and hour laws, as well as other employment regulations
  • Measure productivity or efficiency

The Best Way to Track Time Is To Keep It Simple

Old-fashioned time clocks were once a popular choice, and they still serve a purpose for many employers. But with attendance software and the popularity of smart devices, an old-fashioned time clock is no longer necessary in keeping track of employee hours. A mobile attendance system is well worth the initial investment you’ll make setting it up. 

Today’s attendance software options allow your business to track employee hours more accurately and reduce administrative costs significantly. And you can use the valuable data it provides to predict costs and reduce uncertainty. The bottom line is that it will – you guessed it – boost your bottom line.

Manual Time Tracking: The Old Way

black and brown analog desk clock

Clock card systems are an easy way to track employee attendance. Employees use a card to punch in and out by hand when they start or stop working each day. The employer uses the information to pay employees and keep track of attendance records.

Employers can also use timesheets, but these require employees to write down the number of hours they work each day. This makes it harder for employers to keep accurate records. The process can be time consuming and if an employee works different shifts or has irregular hours they may forget to do it.

Computerized Timesheets: A Step Beyond

Computerized timesheets are the next technological step after manual time-keeping. In these systems, employees punch in and out using a computerized terminal linked to an online timesheet program. 

The attendance software then compiles the attendance data electronically, so there’s less risk that employees will claim they worked more hours than they did. However, this attendance system requires dedicated terminals and plenty of technical support — both are costly resources that smaller businesses typically lack.

Biometric systems: The Future is Now

Physical security solutions have been around for a while now and can be very effective at tracking employee time and attendance. This is because they require employees to scan their fingerprints or irises before being able to access the building or enter their office space.

Biometric solutions are useful because they can’t be easily shared or stolen, but they’re also expensive and they don’t always scale well. Especially if you have remote workers.

Mobile Apps: A Great Choice

Mobile attendance tracking apps allow employees to clock out and in from any location (as long as they have access to the internet and a mobile device). The mobile apps involved keep managers and supervisors up-to-date on who’s on-site at all times, as well as who’s on sick leave or on vacation.

If your company has remote employees that work from home or the field, mobile time tracking apps can be extremely helpful. Employees can simply clock in and out on their phone or computer to keep track of their hours worked throughout the day. These apps also provide GPS tracking location stamps to ensure they are clocking in exactly where they should be, reducing time theft.

And depending on the workforce management program you use, you can even sync these apps with a payroll system so you don’t have to worry about entering hours into another system later on.

Time-Tracking Software

Time tracking and attendance software programs are designed to take over most of the work associated with tracking employee time and attendance — including collecting data, calculating hours worked, assigning jobs to workers, and detecting errors before they cause problems for payroll or tax filings.

Card Swipe Machines

Card swipe machines are a convenient and stylish way to track employee attendance and time. Employees simply swipe their cards when they come in, go to lunch, leave early, etc.

This system of tracking employee hours and attendance makes it easy to see who is where and when they got there. Plus, employees don’t have to remember their usernames or passwords—all they need is to remember their card number.

The Bottom Line

There are a number of reasons why being able to track employee attendance and time is so important. 

It can let you know who’s clocking in for the shift and who may be cutting it close when it comes to their scheduled hours. This can help you deal with worrying attendance or punctuality trends before they become a problem and limit time theft. 

Being able to accurately track employee hours also makes it easier for management to keep track of vacation days, sick leave, and statutory holidays. And because the software can be integrated into payroll systems, it can reduce accounting duties and their associated costs. All this can significantly lower your administrative expenses. 

Time tracking also provides your company with lots of great data which you can use to improve decision-making and resource allocation and avoid unnecessary overtime, among other benefits. And let’s not forget, real-time data also eventually improves customer service. It gives managers the ability to track absenteeism trends and prevent future problems before they occur. 

However you decide to track employee hours, make sure that you have a workforce management system in place and your business will run much smoother as a result.

Improve and Optimize Workforce Management Today

Axsium is focused on helping organizations simplify their workforce management processes. And the first step in this process is to implement software that can help make employee attendance tracking more efficient.

WFM software helps organizations optimize workforce planning, streamlining time tracking, and improve employee engagement and scheduling. And we can make sure the integration is as seamless as possible. 

All you have to do is pick up the phone and give us a call or get in touch!

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