Running a business with hourly workers means that you generally have to track time in some way or another. Maybe you are tracking time using pen and paper, or an old style punch clock system. Either way, you likely understand that the manual effort involved in collecting, verifying, and matching time worked with scheduled shifts. Combine this with manually inputting into your payroll system and you see the significant time spent managing employee time and attendance.
This time and effort increases as you grow your business by adding staff, or having to deal with calculation errors. Along with the increased risk of input and verification errors, manual entry also increases the risk of employees reporting their time incorrectly. There are better ways out there that will allow you to manage this process, reducing the time you are spending as well as reducing the potential for fraud.
Why Tracking Time is Important
Reduce Time Fraud
One of the main reasons businesses track time is to reduce and prevent time fraud. When it comes to hourly workers, shift workers and 24/7 operations, it can be hard to stay on top of everything. This opens up opportunity for employees to abuse manual time tracking systems, and commit time fraud. You might have heard of the term “buddy punching“, which is one of the main ways people abuse manual or outdated time tracking systems. Essentially, it’s when a friend or colleague punches in for their co-worker, despite the co-worker not being on site. This leads to employers paying employees for time they have not worked. This is so common, that according to Quickbooks, time fraud costs US employers $11billion every year. So, while manual time tracking systems are better than none, there are better solutions out there. We’ll cover those later.
Payroll & Billing Efficiency
Staying on top of tracking time for your employees means you can stay on top of your payroll and billing processes. Having all of the data, that is as accurate, means you can bill your clients on time as well as paying your employees on time. Again, when this is a manual process it can be time consuming. If you are spending significant time collecting the hours, verifying them, and then inputting the data into a payroll system, you may want to consider updating your time clock process.
Compliance with Labor Unions
As most employers know, there are labor laws that need to be abided by. These laws are generally monitored by labor unions who often request records to ensure compliance. By keeping accurate records, employers can always show their compliance in order to avoid issues with labor unions, or even worse, legal action.
Why Automated Time Tracking is the Way Forward
As we mentioned above, manually tracking time is far from ideal. Automated time tracking systems actually have the potential to transform your business! While they come at a cost compared to most manual methods, they ultimately end up saving you money… let’s see how!
Error Free Payroll & Billing
The American Payroll Association has estimated that errors in manual payroll process can cost businesses up to 7% of their gross payroll. So, how do you minimize these costs? Automated time tracking collects time and attendance data in many different ways. For example, we use biometric time clocks, a mobile app, and even voice systems to collect attendance data. A system like Celayix can then go through an automated attendance matching process. Not only that, Celayix then integrates with your payroll and billing providers to accurately transfer data, and avoid human error altogether. So, every opportunity for error in manual processes is totally eliminated with automated time tracking.
Eliminate Time Fraud
As we mentioned above, time fraud is a huge issue for manual time tracking processes. Automated time and attendance systems like Celayix can help eliminate these opportunities completely. First, we have the geofencing tool. With the Celayix mobile app, employees can check in/out for their shift right from their phone! In order to prevent employees from checking in before they get to work, or checking out later than they leave, employers can set up a geofence. This is essentially a geographic area around a work site, that disables the ability to check in/out unless within the area. Essentially, employees MUST be on site to check in/out from their Smartphone. We also use biometric clocks in order to eliminate the possibility of buddy punching. Co-workers would need a colleagues finger print (or other biometric marker) in order to clock them in. The money you spend on your automated system will be far less than the money saved from eliminating time fraud.
Improved Tracking & Reporting
If you manage a mobile workforce, or a remote workforce, it can help to have improved tracking and reporting features to see in real time where your employees are. When it comes to manual processes for tracking time, you generally only see that data after a shift has been worked. However, with automated systems like Celayix, employers can use the map view to see which employees have checked in where. Our map is fully customizable and allows you to filter by employee, customer, site, and service provided. It’s the perfect tool to improve your workforce management, especially for those with teams across multiple regions. With improved tracking & reporting, you might be able to identify opportunities to save money through your employee scheduling.