Employees are the most expensive aspect of running a business. Even before they’re onboarded, a considerable amount of money is spent on finding the right talent, recruiting them, and adding them to the payroll.
At the same time, employees are the most significant assets of a business and are responsible for generating revenue. For employees, time is money. They’re paid for the amount of time they spend working for the company’s goals.
Due to this, organizations need to make sure they derive even the tiniest bit of value from their employees’ time. This becomes even more critical if the employees are paid by the number of hours they clock in. To track this aspect, companies use time and attendance software.
Time and attendance software is used to automate the process of recording employee work hours. It’s also referred to as attendance tracking software or employee time clock software and generally performs the following functions:
One of the most significant reasons why time and attendance systems are essential is that one out of three time tracking systems are outdated. They will restrict the HR department’s ability to monitor employee working hours and lead to careless expenses due to improper time tracking.
In most cases, time attendance systems are sold as a standalone application. Or, it can be part of a collection of HR recruitment software. While purchasing such an application, ensure that it integrates with your existing payroll system and other essential HR tools.
Simply put, the primary purpose of a time and attendance management program is to simplify the process of time tracking. These applications make it effortless to manage employee attendance data by automating the process of calculating employee work hours, sick leaves, paid time off, holidays, and overtime.
Of course, time and attendance management software might not be helpful for companies with flexible working hours. But for businesses that pay employees based on the number of hours they clock in, it’s vital. Depending on the attendance tracking software you choose, different methods such as phone, tablet, clock, or web clocking in and out can be performed.
Some solutions might also include features for employee scheduling, making it easier to notify employees of their shifts. In short, time attendance software aims to replace the ancient manual punch-card systems.
As mentioned before, companies with flexible working hours may not benefit much from time and attendance software. More precisely, these kinds of systems are ideal for businesses that employ hourly employees and need to track their (billable) hours to pay them rightly.
The following are the entities that’ll benefit from attendance software:
Buying a software application can be an expensive and emotionally taxing process. However, the benefits that await once the team is ramped up using the software are worth the hassle. A time and attendance software solution will help you save money and bring more transparency to employee hour tracking.
Here are some benefits of using employee attendance software:
With numerous time and attendance software applications available, it’s crucial that you choose the right software with the right set of features. Similarly, it’s vital to steer clear of software vendors that try to entice you with unnecessary bells and whistles.
In short, the best time and attendance software will have the needed features to help companies efficiently track time. At the same time, the transition from the old system of manually recording work hours or another software must be seamless.
Here are some of the common and critical features that you must look for in an attendance tracking system.
Every timekeeping software system will have the option to create and edit timesheets. As the name suggests, they’re electronic sheets that store employees’ time entries for a specific pay period. Employers can view them on dashboards or under employees’ profiles.
A time clock is a must-have feature for a time and attendance tracking system. It allows employees to clock in and out, record breaks, and track their work hours. This can be performed with a physical device or with the help of a mobile application.
Leaves are an important part of time and attendance management. Since the number of leaves an employee takes must be recorded to pay them accurately, it’s a vital feature that most attendance management systems offer.
The leave management feature makes it easier for HR professionals to calculate total working hours by tracking half-day leaves, sick leaves, or paid-time-off. In most solutions, this process of recording leaves happens automatically.
Some attendance tracking programs allow companies to schedule employee shifts. This will aid in recording employee work hours with precision and is also one of the efficient ways to manage time and attendance. Scheduling features will include the ability to assign employee shifts and create electronic schedules that employees can check at any time.
Another impressive feature of most time attendance systems is setting up paid time off policies and automatically accruing employee hours based on the set rules. This will also help employees to check how much time they can afford to take off.
Reporting capabilities are an integral part of a time and attendance tracking platform. It’s also one of the most critical functions of the HR department. Time attendance reports must contain information about the total number of employee work hours, overtime hours of employees, and PTO. Additionally, there should be features to export reports in multiple formats.
Managers are primarily responsible for monitoring the work hours of their employees. This means that the software must make it easier to perform monitoring. For that, intuitive dashboards are an excellent means.
Such dashboards enable managers to record work hours, approve time, and even create schedules. They also offer search capabilities to view individual employee profiles and may include features to accept or reject leave requests.
With dedicated profiles, employees can log in to the time tracking web solution or mobile application and view their total work hours, clock in and out information, attendance, and upcoming shifts. This ability to view work hours information will empower employees to manage their hours more efficiently.
While the above mentioned are some of the must-have features, here are some of the nice-to-have features of a time and attendance software system:
The HR software market is filled with plenty of choices. This is good and bad news at the same time. Good that you’ll never be out of options but bad that you might face the burden of choice overload.
To make things easier for you, here are some aspects of the attendance management software you need to contemplate to make the right choice.
The number of employees that work for the company is a crucial factor in software purchase decisions. That’s because all software applications aren’t made the same. Different software caters to the needs of diverse companies with varying employee headcounts.
If you have a smaller headcount, opt for a time attendance system that can grow with your business. This will be convenient for you as you don’t have to opt for a different software application once you expand.
An important thing you need to consider is whether or not your business requires physical hardware along with your time and attendance software. This decision is crucial as some software solutions support hardware integration while others don’t.
If your business already has a punch cards system in place, a modern time clock would be the ideal replacement. Such a system is handy for a company in which most employees work on-site and at the same place.
For companies having smaller teams or employees that work remotely, dedicated hardware won’t be needed. Instead, you can opt for an online time and attendance system that enables employees to clock in and out virtually.
The punch method depends on whether or not you’re using hardware. Suppose you’re using hardware, for example, clocks that let employees clock in and out. In that case, you can opt for a software solution that can record attendance based on inputs such as fingerprints, PINs, facial recognition, RFID cards, and voice recognition.
A small business might not require sophisticated punch methods such as face recognition or fingerprint. But a company that handles sensitive information will require such complex security systems.
But of course, you can employ punch methods without having a physical device. For example, you can utilize a mobile punching app with the help of geofencing technology. This will ensure that the worker automatically clocks in once they’re in their designated work area.
Before making a software purchase decision, it would be helpful to have a clear understanding of the employee processes. Such processes include how employees track time currently, how it’s approved, and who all are involved in the approval process. This will help you find a solution that has the needed features.
As mentioned earlier, the time and attendance software solution isn’t made for just tracking employee work hours. Instead, it must integrate with other HR systems to minimize manual tasks.
Make a list of the human resources applications you currently use. The employee scheduling system, payroll software, and data and analytics software are some of the crucial ones. Ask the vendor whether the software integrates with those applications or can integrate with them in the immediate future.
Keeping up with the changing employer and employees law is essential to run a business. It protects both employees and the employer from any form of illegal manipulation. While choosing time clock software, ensure that you pick the one that’s compliant with such laws and can help prevent any avoidable lawsuits.
Apart from these, opt for a software application that comes with a free trial or freemium version. This will allow you to check whether the software fits well for your business before making the giant leap. See whether you can let employees try out the software and provide you with feedback.
It would be best if you also considered the software vendor’s responsiveness to solving issues. Ideally, they should get back to you within 24 hours, but of course, the faster, the better. Also, make sure that the software comes with enough documentation.
You can also ask the software vendor to estimate the savings generated from using the software. This will allow you to understand whether the investment will be justified in the long run.
Choosing your company's Time and Attendance software is a complex process. To help HR departments compare and benchmark all Time and Attendance software, we have selected a list of 60 companies providing SaaS tools for HR.
Time and Attendance software is often combined with other HR functionalities. If your company is in need of complementary HR features, make sure to take a look at those frequent combinations:
Time and attendance software increases the efficiency and accuracy of time tracking, making it easier to calculate employee compensation. It’s also helpful to automate several monotonous administrative tasks, track project progress, improve employee engagement, and avoid compliance lawsuits.
Several vendors offer applications that combine both payroll and attendance tracking software. Check the features of different software solutions and talk with vendors to choose one with both functionalities.
Time and attendance systems help businesses track, record, and optimize employee hours and accurately pay their employees. It can be a standalone software solution or a combination of hardware and software.
Time and attendance are crucial for every business as it’s an actual number that helps stakeholders make the right business decisions. It’s helpful to calculate workforce demand and understand employee engagement.
A time and attendance system streamlines the time tracking process by automating the collection of time and attendance information. It makes it easier to manage payroll as the employee work hours are recorded with utmost accuracy.
Although it depends on the software you choose, most probably, it’s a yes. Employees can log in to their profile on a web or mobile app and access their attendance information such as schedules, PTO, and sick leaves. They can use the same app to apply for leaves.
A time and attendance system is used to track and record employee working hours. It’s helpful to monitor when employees start and stop, the number of hours they clock in, and the time taken for breaks. It’s also beneficial to check whether an employee arrives on time.
A time and attendance system can effortlessly handle the time tracking needs of both hourly and salaried employees. This includes overtime, PTO, sick leaves, holidays, and more. They can also be used to clock in and out, log the time an employee spends on a specific project, and create and assign employee schedules.
Firstly, time and attendance software is a valuable tool that lets companies effectively track and record employee work hours. It also makes it easier to adhere to labor acts and other state wage and hour laws.
The clock in and out feature can ensure employees don’t involve in time theft, and at the same time, it’s helpful to ensure that employees are paid accurately. An online time and attendance system makes it easier for the employer to have an overview of employees’ working hours. Precise timekeeping is beneficial to understand exact staff requirements. You can use the insights derived from these systems to tweak employee schedules.