Monthly Archives

July 2017

Who Needs Time Tracking Solutions?

By | Online Employee Time Clock | No Comments

What businesses can benefit from time clock software? We won’t leave you in suspense, the short answer is almost EVERY business! If you are self-employed and have no employees, that might be the only case where you won’t need a dedicated time-tracking solution. But if you are employing even a handful of employees, it is imperative that you have the structure and organization of reliable time clock software. Read on to see how online time clocks can help many different types of businesses.

Photographers

If you have a photography business that travels to take pictures, your employees are often on the go and not in a traditional office. Whether your employees are travelling to weddings to capture couple’s special day, or real estate photographers waiting for the perfect twilight shot to capture a property, they are on the go constantly. Tracking time can become tricky, especially if they are trying to remember exactly where they drove, how long they were there, and if they had to buy any equipment or materials necessary for the job. For photographers that are always on the go, even weekly recaps of their work flow can be challenging, and mistakes are sure to be made manually recording their time. Time tracking software that can be accessed from their phones makes this task easier and more accurate. Let your photographers focus on capturing the perfect moment, not remembering their hours!

Hairdressers

If your office is a salon or barbershop, you may think it will be easy to track time. However, most busy salons have employees who work very different hours, and irregular days. Their hours one week may look nothing like their hours the next, and keeping track of all the hours and clients can become a chore. Eliminate this stress by utilizing time clock software that lets them excel at their passion of cutting hair, and not be bogged down by unorganized time tracking.

Lawn Care Professionals

If your lawn care business has taken off, congratulations! There are more and more people being employed in this industry, and they are responsible for making residential yards, business grounds, golf courses, and more as beautiful and green as possible. This is an on-the-go job, with your workers possibly starting their day at a central office, but probably driving directly to their job site. If you want to be able to track their time throughout the day, you need a solution they can access through their smartphones, one that is easy and intuitive to use. When your employees come back from a long, hot, sweaty day of yard maintenance, the last thing they want to do is think about the hours worked, lunches taken, or breaks. Let time clock software help eliminate the stress of tracking the hours of your lawn care employees.

Editors and Writers

If you are employing freelance writers and you need to track their time, don’t leave it to their best guess. When you are writing all day at home, in coffee shops, or part-time at an office, you want to focus on your craft and not be bogged down by the monotony of time tracking. Utilizing time clock software helps to free up your freelancers to do what they do best. Tracking hours worked, even if they are between 3 and 5 in the morning, is easy and accurate.

Construction Workers

Managing a busy construction company can be overwhelming, and even more so if you are not using a good method of time tracking. With many employees going to job sites, keeping track of everyone’s hours is just not possible. Breaks, lunches, and time spent on the job site need to be monitored, but how can you have your eye on everyone at once? The answer is an online time clock that can make this easy, and keep track of your workers as they are on the go.

Hotels

A busy hotel is filled with a huge variety of workers, all probably at different pay scales and probably with different exemption statuses. How to keep track of all of these employees with manual time recording becomes a problem as a busy hotel grows. It is imperative for great customer service that your employees are where they need to be at the time they are scheduled, and how will you keep your eye on everyone? You need a time tracking solution that can easily manage and record your employee’s’ hours, instantly classifying them and ensuring that everyone is accounted for.

Healthcare Workers

A busy hospital, clinic, or other medical facility needs to have the right staff in place for the scheduled hours. Knowing exactly who is on the premises in a busy medical practice is important as well, and time tracking software that can be viewed remotely by a supervisor is essential. Especially in critical situations, where being late could severely impact a sick or injured individual, time tracking can ensure that your employees are there when you need them. Punching in and out is made easy with the right time clock software.

Retailers

A busy retail business has a large staff with employees coming and going over the day. Keep track of everyone with intuitive time tracking software that keeps everyone accounted for. Lunches and breaks can be easily viewed, which is especially important when those breaks need to be rotated continuously. A busy retail business has enough to deal with, tracking inventory and sales, and time tracking shouldn’t be a stressful part of your business.

Virtual Employees

If your employees work remotely and do not come into a physical office ever, you need a good way to monitor their hours worked and give them something to be accountable to. Time tracking software is the answer, and allows them to punch in and out even if they never enter a physical office building. View your virtual employee’s punches, approve them, schedule time off, and more, with time clock software that is perfect for remote workers.

Warehouse Workers

A large warehouse makes it easy for employees to feel invisible, and perhaps try to utilize buddy punching to shirk their shift responsibilities. Bring straightforward time clock software into the mix, and make recording punches a daily part of the workday. The anonymity of a large company can make employees feel less responsible for their hours, but time tracking solidifies that hours worked are hours paid, and gives an easy way to find those hours.

Can you see how having a reliable time tracking solution can benefit almost every business? Across many industries, the accountability and accuracy that a good system brings can save you time, money, and help you organize your business. Timeco is proud to offer superior online employee time clock solutions that can help your business, whatever industry you may be in. Contact us today for a free demo!

Time-Keeping Mistakes

By | Online Employee Time Clock | No Comments

If you have employees, you know that you need to make sure that they are working the required hours and doing a good job. There can be many hurdles in the workplace to make sure that you have the right employees and that their performance is good. But there are other things an employer needs to worry about, and today we are talking about mistakes that happen regarding hours worked and worker’s pay. There are many rules and regulations that govern how to pay employees, and there can be big consequences if you make mistakes regarding payroll. When you are running a small business, you have many things to worry about on a day to day basis, and payroll is just one of them. Read on for some of the common time-keeping mistakes, and how you can avoid them and make running your business a little easier.

Estimating Hours

A surprisingly common practice for some business owners is to track employee’s time for most of the month, and then estimate the hours worked for the last few days. Perhaps you think you will make your employees happy by having those hours on their paychecks, or you don’t really understand how your payroll works. Estimating hours is a really bad business practice that you should remedy immediately. Consider all of these negative implications:

 

  • Paying employees in advance of them working could result in overpaying them and cost your business financially.
  • It could also result in underpaying your employees, if they work outside of their normal hours those last few days.
  • Employees could quit and take advantage of those unworked days, or leave early on the last days of the month knowing that they usually are paid in advance and not double-checked.
  • Manually adding time to an employee’s sheet could result in disputed hours by the employee.
  • Creates an environment that can seem unprofessional.
  • It could take up extra time to manually add in projected hours—time that could be better spent growing your business!
  • There is so much room for error when you are estimating hours!

So don’t estimate your employee’s hours! If you have been doing this to avoid switching payroll dates, or because you don’t want to offend your employees with a change, you need to know that, as the boss, you have the final say. You need to put into practice what is best for your business, and estimating hours can not only hurt your profits, it can be bad for your employees.

Allowing Work Off-The-Clock

Non-exempt employees are required to track their hours, even if they have the same schedule every day they work. But sometimes employees can be motivated to work more than their schedules allow for, or can want to come in early to get started. Or maybe you have an employee that stays late every day, without tracking their hours, thinking they are going above and beyond. It could be tempting as an employer to let these employees work unpaid hours if they want to, but you are required to track all of your employee’s hours and pay them accordingly. Even if it is not approved, you are technically supposed to pay your employees whenever they are actively working. As the employer, you need to have clear guidelines as to when your employees can work, how many hours a week they can work, and whether or not overtime is allowed. If you establish early that all hours worked will be paid, and that you don’t tolerate working outside of set schedules, you won’t have as many problems with employees working off the clock.

Incorrect Classification of Employees

There are two ways to classify employees. They are either non-exempt, and paid hourly, or they are exempt and they are salaried. Salaried employees don’t need to track their hours, and non-exempt employees do. Exempt employees don’t get paid breaks, and do not get overtime pay (which is time and a half) when they work more than 40 hours a week. Sometimes employers can mistakenly classify their employees with the wrong designation, but other times they can do it deliberately. They might think they can save money and eliminate the hassle of tracking hours by having their workers classified as exempt. The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) states that most employees need to be paid the federal minimum wage and overtime pay unless they are a bona fide executive, administrative, professional or outside sales employee. The job duties and salary of the employee must meet all of the requirements to be classified as exempt. Make sure that you are following all the rules for classifying your employees, because you can fall under a Department of Labor investigation at any time, unannounced. You will have to correct any violation and pay back wages if you are found to be not accurately conducting your payroll. Don’t try to take shortcuts because you think calculating your employee’s hourly wages will be too time-consuming or difficult.

Tax Forms

Employers are required to make payments to the IRS for federal income tax, employer and employee social security, and Medicare. You need to stick to whichever deposit schedule you have established with the IRS, and make sure you deposit your payments on time. If you don’t make these payments you can be subject to fines. Keeping track of your payments is completely dependent on the accuracy of your time cards and the hours worked by your employees. You need to get organized to keep hours straight and taxes accurate.

Manually Adjusting Time Sheets

There are honest mistakes that come from being unfamiliar or unorganized with time tracking, but there are other steps that employers may take to deliberately alter hours worked to their own advantage. Because any weekly hours over 40 need to be paid overtime pay (time and a half), some employers are tempted to keep their employees under the 40-hour mark. It is acceptable to have a policy that employees are not allowed to work overtime hours, but absolutely not OK to alter hours or make adjustments to time sheets that do not reflect time worked. The Department of Labor will not look favorably at these deliberate time errors.

Calculating Overtime Biweekly

The FLSA states that overtime is to be calculated weekly for any hours worked over 40. You can see how calculating this biweekly could lead to not having to give employees overtime pay, if they work 35 hours one week and 45 the next. Make sure you are following all of the rules, and staying compliant with the Department of Labor. Keep great records, and calculate your overtime pay weekly. You will stay compliant, keep your employees happy, and be known as a great employer that compensates fairly.

Not Paying for All Time Worked

Especially if your employees have to travel, meet with clients, or perform duties that are outside of a traditional office, you may not be tracking all of the time that falls under the umbrella of “work.” The Department of Labor states that “time spent traveling during normal work hours is considered compensable work time.” Some types of waiting must also be paid, such as when an employee has to wait for equipment to be fixed. Mandatory trainings, meetings outside of work hours, and times when an employee must remain on-call are all events that need to be compensated. You need to keep track of these times and pay your employees accordingly.

Timecard Mistakes

Another thing that employers sometimes overlook is the need to check their employee’s timecards for mistakes. There can be a push to get the numbers done and into payroll as soon as possible, and double checking time cards might be the last thing you have time for. Even if mistakes are the fault of the employee, the Department of Labor considers it the employer’s responsibility to verify that all hours are correct. Mistakes could result in overpaying your employees (which could hurt your business) or underpaying your employees (which is a violation). You need to find a solution to tracking time, finding mistakes, and keeping great records that will help you have more time for your business. What’s the answer? Timeco!

The amount of mistakes, hours overlooked, regulations, and fines for violations can seem overwhelming to the small business owner. Don’t let timekeeping hold you back—you need time clock software that does all of the work for you! Let Timeco help you manage your employee’s time by tracking, organizing and categorizing time to be able to accurately pay your employees and remain compliant with the Department of Labor. Don’t waste precious time manually reconciling a time sheet, or trying to remember who worked when. You need a solution that can do all the time tracking for you, and that your employees can easily use. Timeco can help with lunch calculations, rounding, and overtime, and can solve most of these common pitfalls of time management that small businesses can fall into. Let Timeco help your business with our easy to use online employee time clock software. Get a free demo today!

Biometrics Help With Time Theft

By | Online Employee Time Clock | No Comments

Employers have always faced challenges when it comes to employee attendance and time tracking. Making sure your employees are where they need to be, and working, can be a struggle if you don’t trust the timekeeping methods you are using. Paper time punching can have many errors, and there is a risk of “buddy punching”. This practice, where one worker clocks in for another, can be a big problem in some businesses, and paper methods of timekeeping, or a swiped card may not be effective enough. If you want the most advanced way of tracking your employees’ time, and eliminating time theft, you need to consider biometrics.

Biometrics

What are biometrics? Biometric time clocks use unique physical characteristics to uniquely identify a person. They used to be the stuff of sci-fi, or James Bond movies, but now are a very accessible and useful technology. Identification through biometrics is accurate, secure, and user-friendly. The most common form of biometric time clocks use fingerprint technology to recognize each unique worker, and punch them in only when they are physically there. A fingerprint scanner ensures that your employee really was physically present when they punched in, and that they didn’t somehow beat the system with a buddy punch. When you utilize biometric identification for time punching in your business, your workers are signing in with credentials that cannot be lost, forgotten, guessed, or easily duplicated. Using biometrics results in less time theft.

Time Theft

Time theft is an increasing problem in many workplaces. While nothing physical is being stolen, the theft of time can be extremely costly to a business. If your employees are being paid for hours they are not working, your company’s time is being stolen.

As mentioned earlier, buddy punching is one of the most common forms of time theft.  An American Payroll Association study found that over 75 percent of companies lose money from buddy punching, and employees reported stealing roughly 4.5 hours a week, which is the equivalent of six weeks vacation! These are just the statistics of those workers who were admitting to buddy punching, and there are probably many more unreported lost hours.

Another form of time theft is found in the false punch, where time is tracked using a password or personal identification number based system. Passwords, PINs, and ID cards can all be easily shared, and a punch can be made on one worker’s behalf by another worker with this information. A false punch can indicate a worker was present who was not, and result in lost hours of productivity.

If you are still using a paper-based punch system, your employees may be tempted to fudge their time, or round up to the nearest hour. Think of how these extra minutes can easily add up into hours that you pay your employees for work that wasn’t done. 

Lunch breaks are another opportunity for time theft. A 30 minute lunch break can regularly become a 45 minute one, and if this happens every workday, an hour and fifteen minutes of work are lost each week. Smoke breaks are also a place where time theft occurs, and a study by Ohio State University found that each smoker costs employers more than $5,816 than non-smokers, due to breaks and lost productivity.

Time cards, while they can be a great solution for some businesses, can also be abused and lead to time theft. If your employees don’t want their time to be tracked, a time card malfunction is an excuse to avoid tracking. Saying the machine wouldn’t take your card, you swiped your card but it must not have read it, or that you forgot your card, are all excuses that make it hard to know if your employees were really working the correct number of hours.

There are many ways that employees can steal time, and that theft affects a business’s’ bottom line. Whether your business needs to eliminate buddy punching, punching in earlier or later than scheduled, or employees inflating their hours, you need to find a solution that works and is easy to implement. This is where biometrics come in.

How Biometrics Help

Biometrics use facial recognition, fingerprint tracking, or vein-pattern scanning to uniquely identify workers and instantly record their attendance. Fingerprint tracking is the most common, and you will never lose or forget your fingerprint—it is always with you. You cannot share your fingerprint with coworkers like you can share a keycard, PIN, or password. The convenience of using biometrics makes it easy to implement them in any business. Biometrics can improve workforce productivity by decreasing the time spent on manually keeping track of time and attendance records, and can lower your staffing costs if you are spending money on older time tracking methods. Biometrics can save you all of that money lost through false punches, or inflated hours worked. That is money that can go back into your business. You will also save time and money through eliminating the IT problems that come with lost swipe cards and passwords. A biometric timekeeping system makes it so easy for employees to clock in and out, and provides easily accessible reports of your employees time.

There are also benefits to the employee. They no longer need to be responsible for tracking their hours, and possibly underestimating how much they are working. Biometrics can streamline a business’s payroll system and result in employees getting paid sooner. Once employees see how easy a biometric system is, there won’t be much resistance to implementing it.

So if you are looking for a solution that will effectively track time and eliminate time theft, Timeco offers online employee biometric time clocks that can help. Biometrics take the guesswork out of payroll, and accurately track each employee based on their unique, unshareable characteristics. If you want to be confident that you are paying your employees for exactly the hours they work, biometrics are the answer. Don’t let your company’s precious time be stolen—let us demo our biometric solutions for you today!

Addressing Employee Complaints

By | Timesheet System | No Comments

There have been estimates that employers can spend up to 7 minutes entering EACH employee timesheet. This doesn’t even include the time spent tracking down inaccuracies and problems resulting from late submissions or errors. Imagine those minutes multiplied by tens, or even hundreds of employees! That is a lot of time lost on time management that could be spent doing more important things for your business. So time tracking software is great for employers, but what about employees? As with any new implementation there can be resistance to new changes and ideas, and time tracking is no exception. Read on for how your employees may resist the change to time tracking, and what you can do to ease the transition.

Employee Complaint #1: I will forget to enter my time.

Any new system takes a bit of time to really take hold, and time tracking is no exception. If your employees have not been previously tracking their time, or using an outdated system, they may feel unfamiliar with the new methods. Eventually, clocking in or out will become second nature, and they won’t be able to start work without it. This is especially true if they need to scan in before opening work doors, and our barcode, magnetic, proximity and biometric time clocks can take the need to remember out of the equation. Never wonder again who is late, or who left early. Timeco’s timekeeping solutions automate the tracking to eliminate relying on employees to remember to manually clock in and out.

Employee Complaint #2: It is intrusive.

This is a common reaction that can be easily remedied through the passage of time. After a short time of tracking implementation your employees will just see it as another normal part of the workday.  If your employees seem resistant, you can reassure them that you are making changes for the good of the company as a whole, and that invasion of privacy is not your intent. If anything, especially if your employees get paid by the hours they work, you are wanting to ensure that they get fairly paid for every hour worked. Having each employee uniquely clock in eliminates any “buddy punching” or having to utilize other employees to verify if an individual was indeed working. If you have a job, something needs to be tracked to measure performance, and time is an easy way to start. Timeco wants to make sure that all of your employee’s hours are accurately tracked.

Employee Complaint #3: It is tedious.

Maybe in the past systems could be tedious, but with all of the technological advances, this is no longer the case. Time clocking can happen as you walk in the office door, and now can even take place remotely. Mobile access to time clock software allows your employees to clock in and out even when they are at home or on the road. Time clock software has never been easier, and your employees will enjoy all of the advances that have been made. Timeco strives to make the process as easy as possible for both employee and employer.

Employee Complaint #4: It will take time away from my work.

Our timekeeping solutions will do just the opposite! Keeping track of time has been shown to increase productivity, and Timeco’s system is so easy that it won’t interfere with your normal work routine at all. If anything, it can give a broader picture of exactly how much time is being spent working, and you will be able to modify your business plan around that information

Employee Complaint #5: I just don’t like it.

Well, you can’t please everyone, but you can make adapting to the new changes a little more enticing. Offering incentives for employees that quickly adhere to the new time software will make them want to quickly get on board. You could offer free coffee or lunches to teams who utilize the timekeeping software the most quickly, and encourage everyone to compete and utilize the new methods. At Timeco, we think that both employers and employees will quickly see how beneficial our time clock software can be.

Employee Complaint #6: My schedule is erratic/I don’t work in a physical building.

We have already touched on this, but you don’t need to have a physical clocking in at an office building to enjoy the benefits of Timeco. Our system works anywhere you have internet access, whether at home on your computer, or on the go on your mobile device. If you frequently travel, this creates an extremely easy way to stay accountable and make sure you get paid for all of the hours you work.

As you can see, there aren’t many complaints that can stand up to the innovation and ease of Timeco’s timesheet system. Employees can always be hesitant to implement new methods in the workplace, but by addressing their concerns early you can make the transition a little easier. Timeco continues to strive to deliver the best timekeeping solutions with the best customer service. Get a free demo today to see how Timeco can help your business!

 

How Can Timekeeping Software Benefit Your Business?

By | Online Employee Time Clock | No Comments

Timekeeping software can really help your business! If you have been on the fence about whether you need timekeeping software, it is time to read on to discover the many benefits. Timekeeping software streamlines and simplifies timekeeping, and leaves more time for other crucial parts of your business. There will always be obstacles in the business world, but you don’t have to let timekeeping be one of them!

Accuracy

Everyone thinks they will remember if they left an hour early, or came in before work to get a headstart on the day. Once the day is done, there is little chance you will remember what day you came in early, when you stayed late, or if you took a longer lunch. There are enough things to focus on as an employee, and remembering your hours shouldn’t be one of them. Fifteen minutes here or there may not seem like much, but fifteen minutes late from lunch just four times equals an hour of lost work! Conversely, coming in fifteen minutes early four times would give you that extra hour of pay! Timekeeping software can free up your employees to focus on what is important, while still logging the necessary hours. Don’t wait until the end of the week, or the month, to try to reconcile employee timecards, let time clock software help you organize! Every minute can be tracked when you use an online system.

Focus and Productivity

Tracking hours can make projects and deadlines more attainable, and give your employees a sense of urgency regarding their work. Knowing that online time clock software is recording their hours can make the workday seem more important. Time clock software can put very clear parameters on work that needs to be completed, and help ensure it is done in a timely manner. If your employees are running behind on tasks, knowing that their hours are being tracked can help them reevaluate their work habits and prioritize what needs to get done. Help your employees focus with time clock software!

Remote Workers

If you have employees who work from home, drive for work, or have frequent off-site meetings with clients, it can be hard to accurately track their hours. Time clock software is the answer, and with online logins, your employees can access their time punches from their home computer or mobile phone. You won’t have to worry that your remote workers are not completing the necessary amount of hours, with time clock software you will have a clear picture of all of their punches. Even the playing field between on-site and remote workers by having everyone utilize timekeeping software.

Billing

Some companies bill their clients based on the number of employee hours worked for them. How can you expect to accurately bill if you have no idea how many hours were worked? A quick way to lose a customer is to overbill them due to timekeeping errors. On the other hand, if you are not tracking hours, you may be undercharging and not even know it. Timekeeping software allows you to have complete transparency with your clients regarding hours worked. Get your timesheet in line and help organize your billing as well.

Understanding Workflow

Without timekeeping software, you may not really know where your employee’s hours are going. Time clock software can give a larger picture of the business as a whole, and point to where employees are spending their time. Projects and tasks can be rearranged as necessary to help those employees who need it, while having in mind larger goals. You can also more easily spot inefficiencies in your company through timekeeping software, and where time is being wasted.

 

These examples are just touching on the many benefits of time clock software. You can really improve your business, and get a better overview of your business, by utilizing time clock software. Timeco is proud to offer online solutions in time clocks and attendance, labor tracking, scheduling, timesheets, and more. Our solutions can integrate with payroll and HR systems, and we provide ongoing support. Don’t let the inaccuracy of traditional timekeeping hold your business back. If you are ready to make a great change for your business, contact Timeco today!