Staffing Management

Tracking time and attendance a basic but crucial workplace function

By Rick Bell

Oct. 30, 2020

There are some functions that are so elementary to an organization that without them, there is no business.

People need to show up for work. From the single-person hair salon to a 10,000-employee utility company, time and attendance is mandatory for a business to function at its most basic level. And those workers must spend a requisite amount of time to get the job done.

Digitally pairing the perfect couple

Like Abbott and Costello, salt and pepper and peas and carrots, some things just belong together. For employers, time and attendance and employee scheduling software are two workplace basics that fit hand in glove to make an organization go.

Also read: Timesheet rounding isn’t necessary with the right technology

Like many HR functions, tracking how long employees work each day has evolved from pen and paper to a digital process. Today’s time and attendance solutions reach far beyond a punch clock with employees merely clocking in and out. They typically provide employers with everything needed to track and manage all aspects of their employees’ time.

The value of time and attendance systems

These systems record when employees start and end their day, display their weekly schedules and provide a tool to manage time-off requests

Also read: Knock out the practice of buddy punching for good

Employees can no longer round up the hours they’ve worked or buddy punch their co-workers in and out. Employees are held accountable for the hours they have worked. Many time and attendance systems will offer other values, including:

  • Payroll accuracy.
  • Simplify paid time off management.
  • Time and attendance mobility features.

Accurate pay

You want to track employee hours and streamline your payroll processes. But you’re stuck in a paper-based payroll system. Save ink and save a tree by taking payroll digital. Organizations typically want to adopt a time and attendance management system that can integrate with payroll systems, and it has never been easier to make sure all employees are paid accurately and on time. Digital time and attendance systems let supervisors expedite timesheet review and approval.

They can also quickly and easily track that the right person clocks in for the right shift through electronic photo verification and unique pass codes. These, along with payroll add-ons, lets employers do away with lengthy steps and potential errors in computing payroll.

Simplify paid time off management

Time and attendance software often allows employers to record paid time off — sick time, vacation time and other types of paid time off. In addition, employees can use the software to request time off,and managers can either approve or deny those requests.’s intuitive leave management system makes it easy to manage time off by automatically applying changes to schedules and timesheets.

Time and attendance mobility features

Perhaps most importantly, employees have the ability to clock in and out from their mobile devices. A mobile time clock app automates how the staff clocks in while improving the accuracy and efficiency for every manager. Every internet-connected device essentially becomes a time clock. No one has to touch a communal device or handle paper time cards. Spreadsheets and calculators are no longer necessary since a mobile solution streamlines cumbersome administrative tasks. More than a time clock in their pocket, the multi-tool mobile app lets employees use their phones to clock in and out and allows managers to monitor in real time where and when the punch in or punch out occurs.

Time and attendance and employee scheduling software systems offer a huge benefit to your employees as well as their managers. They simplify an employee’s time-keeping responsibilities via clock in using a computer or mobile device.

Investing in digital time and attendance also benefits a business in many ways. Having a system to accurately track an employee’s time simply saves money. It eliminates manual recordkeeping, which reduces errors and more readily demonstrates compliance with labor laws and other regulations.

Simplicity is a key component to efficiency. Make your time and attendance process seamless for employees, and allow your managers to be more effective and focus on the needs of the organization.

Rick Bell is Workforce’s editorial director.

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