At the lowest resolution, time and attendance software is a system that requires employees to manually clock in and out of shifts.
Businesses use it, so they can optimize the hours their employees work and pay them more accurately.
Is it micromanaging?
It is reasonable to assume requiring workers to manually clock in and out of shifts and breaks can send the message their manager doesn’t trust them enough to report the hours they work accurately.
Some managers are hesitant to use time and attendance software because they fear their employees will resent them.
In industries like hospitality and retail where turnover is especially high managers don’t want to give their employees another reason to leave.
Ironically, it’s in industries where workers are paid hourly like hospitality and retail where time and attendance software would prove most useful.
The fact is time and attendance software is so much more than just a system for employees to clock in and out of shifts and the successful implementation of it lies in managers making this clear to employees.
Benefits to managers
Time and attendance software ensures staff only get paid for the time they actually work, by recording when they clock in and out of shifts, thereby eliminating the guesswork and grey areas associated with using manual time sheets.
Additionally, managers get real-time alerts when staff are late or have not taken required breaks.
The reporting capabilities of time and attendance allow managers to see which of their employees work the most overtime and which of them are routinely late to start their shifts.
Managers also have visibility of early clock-ins and late clock-outs, instances of over & under-scheduling, and which employees have taken more than their allocated breaks.
Time and attendance software provides managers with the insight they can use to iron out inefficiencies in their business.
Given managers know when their staff clock in and out, time and attendance software allow employers to set up compliance rulesets to protect their businesses and themselves from workplace legislation.
Compliance rulesets can be set up to ensure staff doesn’t work too much overtime, take their legally required breaks and get paid accordingly for working overtime, weekends, and public holidays.
Managers have visibility over their compliance warnings so they can stop them before they happen and stay out of legal trouble.
How employees can get in on the action
The benefits of time and attendance software are certainly not lost on employees.
As the reporting aspect of time and attendance software gives managers full visibility of their labor force in real time, employees that are punctual are more likely to be recognized and rewarded for it.
In this same way, time and attendance software also guard against employees being over and under scheduled as employers will be able to see if this is the case and work to fix it.
Another foreseeable benefit to employees is the potential for data collected by time and attendance software to be used to create a resume, especially useful for people moving between jobs which require similar skills.
Time and attendance software offers detailed reports of employee punctuality and experience in a given role down to the minute.
These reports can be used by job seekers to prove their and experience and value to future employers in a concrete, verifiable way instead of relying on the vagueness and inherent unreliability of a resume like others.
There are a lot of time and attendance solutions out there and picking the right one can be tough but the benefits for employers and employees are clear.
It is however important that employees see it as welcome addition, and this can be achieved by managers taking a little time to explain to them what it is and how it will benefit the business before introducing it.