Four Methods of Time Collection for Your Organization

Time Collection

No two businesses are identical in the way they operate. As a result, there is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to employee scheduling software, and in particular, no one way of time collecting that will be the best for your entire workforce. In the history of time collection, manual time sheets and hardware time clocks were thought of as best practice. Today, where the technology has reached far beyond the manual methods of the past, there are several options that fit right into your organization. Whether you have a high tech workforce with smart phones, or a workforce with flip phones, and everything in between, when it comes to employee scheduling and time collection, there is a perfect solution for you and your workforce. Take a read below on the four main methods for time collection.

Option 1: Mobile Applications

Perfect for: Mobile applications for time collection are ideal when your workforce consist of smartphone users and those more familiar with technology. This method works particularly well in industries with remote job locations, ensuring no matter where the employee are, they are checking into shifts at the right collection.

Why this method? In particular, young workers who want quick access to work schedules, time worked, and easy ability to check into shifts without the hassle of traditional system. For managers, this provides real time and accurate details on the hours worked, making it easy to export that information to payroll systems. In a 2017 study by Pew Research Center, it was found that 77% of Americans have a smart phone, up from 35% in 2011. The same study found 88% of Americans use the internet in 2017 compared to a 52% levels of 2000. The access to smart phones and internet is only growing meaning this option will likely be useful in your organization for years to come.

Extra Perks: The extra perks of anything accessible through an app or the web browser is that it is available 24/7, 365 and highly reliable. No longer will you have to worry about inaccurate data collection or time theft. All data is collected and stored with only administrators. This can be critical in any time disputes and/or union rules.

Helpful Hint: Look for a mobile application that has geo-fencing technology to ensure your staff not only check-in to shifts at the right time but are in the right location. To learn more about geo-fencing, take a look at our blog.

Helpful Hint: If you are not sure your workforce has access to a smart phone, look for a provider who has a web version of the mobile app. This means as long as your workforce has access to internet at their home or at the worksite they can check schedules and check into shifts.

Option 2: Time Clocks

Perfect for: Time Clock devices are perfect for organizations with static locations or consistent check in locations. This method provides consistency and is perfect for organizations only looking to collect time and do not need the additional features of an employee scheduling and communication portal.

Why this Method? Traditional punch clocks are a thing of the past. The technology has gone far beyond what we remember from the 1960s TV shows. Today a time clock comes in many forms, from the simplest form of employee ID punch systems to more complicated biometric clocks that can take facial scans to verify attendance.

Helpful hint: Work with your software provider to find the perfect clock for your needs. Depending on your complexity of needs your provider can offer you options. To view a few popular biometric clocks, stay tuned for our upcoming blog “Top Biometric Clocks within your Budget”.

Option 3: VOIP Call in System

Perfect for: Automated phone call systems are ideal for organizations where easy access to internet and smartphones are not possible. This type of system has voice commands that collect check-in and check-out times of employees. These times are typically then delivered to managers in real time to ensure all shifts are checked into and on time.

Why this Method? If you have a workforce that does not have easy access to the internet and works in remote sites, this is a great option for you. This ensures employees can check into shifts without having to call their administrator. Check-ins are collected ensuring easy payroll and billing information is collected quickly and efficiently without room for error.

Helpful hint: If this method seems the best for your organization, make sure to find a system that ensures phone calls are coming from registered phone numbers. This eliminates any potential fears that the check-in is coming from anywhere other than the registered phone. Our best practice for this method is to have an onsite phone employees can use to check in.

Option 4: Online Timesheets

Perfect for: Online time sheets are perfect for organization that want employees to confirm the time they worked and have managers approve the time.

Why This Method? If you want to give your employees autonomy to report their hours worked this is a great option for you. Unlike traditional time sheets, this is all done through an employee mobile app or web browser reducing any opportunities for the time collected to be lost.  Have employees submit hours worked for supervisor approval. Communicate directly through the employee and manager applications to avoid any lags in communication or lost information

Helpful hint: If you are not sure if online time sheets make sense in your organization considers the cost to your organization of mistakes in payroll hours. By providing employees a chance to verify hours worked avoid any payroll or billing disputes.

These four options provide a solution for any type of organization looking to automate the collection of time and attendance in today’s workforce. If you are unsure which one would fit your organization then best consider a hybrid combination. Some employees might require the VOIP system while others may prefer the smart phone application. Depending on your organization’s needs find a provider who can work with your needs and any constraints you may have.

For questions on the different time collection options available in the market, feel free to reach out to the Celayix team for an assessment of your business. Celayix has 17 years of experience in the employee scheduling and time and attendance software. We work with organizations to automated processes in the scheduling, time collection, communications, and payroll aspects of a business. For more information, e-mail the Celayix team at or call us on our toll free line 1-888-591-5558.