Gain control of resources with time and attendance tracking 

Ciaran Rowsome, CEO, FlexTime, says it's important for all employees to feel fully supported and not feel they are being monitored when it comes to time and attendance recording, which is why the group's solution looks at the wellbeing of both the employer and employee

FlexTime’s innovative VisionTime system can provide a tailored time and attendance solution for your business

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23 June 2021 | 0

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Pre-Covid-19, no one could have envisaged how rapidly businesses would need to change the way they operated. Organisations all over the world have had to pivot to meet increasing demands for more flexible, effective and tailored IT solutions for their businesses. 

While countries are slowly reopening and people are returning to the workplace, many businesses have been forced to adapt their time and attendance procedures to make them fit changing work environments. These changes are likely to lead to a more permanent shift in the way work is completed and time is recorded. 

With FlexTime’s innovative VisionTime system, employees can easily record time spent in different workplaces, visits to worksites and the all-important task monitoring. Due to FlexTime’s experience in flexible IT solutions pre-Covid 19, it is uniquely positioned to understand and cater to the changing nature of the workplace. Its systems are already ahead of the curve. Its time and attendance system is more flexible than most. Unique features include innovative shift arrangements, the ability for the employee and supervisor to interact intuitively digitally, easy shift swapping and solutions on querying a particular shift or shift change. All of these save businesses time and therefore money. 

Why track employee hours?

Wages paid to employees are based on the amount of time they work. The failure to adhere to employment and labour laws and regulations can result in penalties and employee-initiated litigation. As well as this, making key business decisions, such as hiring needs, reductions in the labour workforce and job assignments, require exact knowledge of hours worked.

With so many employees having moved to remote work, a strong time tracking procedure can help you ensure that everyone is continuing to do their jobs and work the hours they should be. If your company is granting more remote working opportunities to employees, it’s wise to make sure time and attendance can be properly recorded for both hourly and salaried employees.

What is a time & attendance system?

A time and attendance system gives employees an advanced, user-friendly alternative to outdated processes like manual time cards. Automated systems have employee dashboards and flexible punch methods. It helps businesses reduce lost time and track employee productivity.

Developing automated processes to replace manual ones requires careful planning and allocation of resources, including the integration of new technology. The inability to increase technology for remote workers has been widely identified as one of greatest challenges of reopening the economy post Covid-19. Improving technology for record keeping, employee management and payroll administration are key concerns.

So, how do you know if you need a tailored time and attendance solution for your business? Here are more of the reasons you might:

  • Payroll processing

If you are spending a lot of time manually processing staff payroll, it is actually costing your business. Payroll processing is a huge deadline-oriented task for organisations of all sizes. It can be especially difficult with organisations that have unique work arrangements and for staff that regularly work unpredictable hours. A lot of businesses process their payroll manually with paper or spreadsheets. All these hours and resources used in processing timesheets add up. 

  • Human error 

When organisations use a paper-based or spreadsheet system for collecting all their staff clocking information, it can be difficult to know if the information being provided is accurate and honest. There is also a lot of manual calculating that needs to be carried out for overtime and different pay arrangements.

  • Different working arrangements 

Many organisations have lots of unique working arrangements in place for different members of the organisation. This goes beyond the normal distinction of part-time workers and full-time workers. This has been particularly true during Covid-19. Certain staff may be on flexible working arrangements, while others may be on special contracts with unique overtime rules that need advanced calculating depending on certain requirements. There may also be staff that work extensively during shorter periods of time. In this instance, employers need to make sure they are complying with the Working Time Act.

  • Annual leave management 

As organisations grow, manually managing annual leave with spreadsheets and other manual methods can become increasingly difficult and time consuming.

  • Time theft

Time theft can include everything from taking a longer break than allotted or clocking in for a colleague when they’re late to work. This has become known as “buddy punching” in the US. The American Payroll Association estimates that over 75% of businesses lose money from buddy punching. Whether intentional or not, time theft costs businesses money. Automated time and attendance systems prevents this from happening. 

How VisionTime can help

With a time and attendance system like FlexTime’s ‘VisionTime’, all staff’s annual leave entitlements can be managed with advanced features like carry forward, special leave and a request/approve set up with email integrations.

Regarding payroll processing, VisionTime links to all major payroll providers like Sage, Thesauras, BrightPay, JD Edwards etc. The payroll links give a painless experience at the stage of payroll processing. When the payroll period has completed and VisionTime has collected all the time information, it is simply exported to payroll. The time that has been made available can be re-allocated to other work in the organisation.

To avoid human error, the VisionTime system can clock in and out in more than 30 different ways. The most popular methods include clocking in via biometric, RFID card, PC and on a mobile device. Any of these methods will support real-time clocking with up to date reporting on all staff’s clocking behaviour and save businesses a lot of time. It also builds trust between employers and staff.

As regards multiple working arrangements in a company, VisionTime allows employers to create and easily assign schedules and work arrangements to members of staff and simply let them clock in and out with their custom schedule.

Improving efficiency

All HR departments are familiar with the phone call or email asking how much time off an employee has left for the year. Instead of letting discrepancies in these calculations impact work, time and attendance software allows employees to see that information themselves, whenever they need to. Letting employees see their time records when they want will help them identify how well they are using their time at work. The insight gained from seeing time spent on particular projects or clients helps employees eliminate inefficiencies.

Growing your business 

A paper-based system may work for a time for small businesses. However, if you hope to grow your business, which is a common objective, you’ll need a system that can grow with you as your team gets bigger and there is more information to track. It is better to be proactive and upgrade while your timekeeping needs are still manageable.

Creating a central database 

For companies that are spread out across lots of offices or locations, it’s much easier to calculate payroll using a system that is standardised for all employees, no matter where they are. By using time and attendance software, you can create a central database, with guaranteed practices that can be accessed from anywhere, including while on the move.  

Shift scheduling

Remote and flexible working can lead to confusion over employee availability. Managers can be unsure whether it’s appropriate to contact employees at certain times, what the employee’s core working hours are, or whether a job-sharing colleague is working or not. 

In team-oriented departments, teams still need to meet from time to time, which can require set guidelines and the juggling of schedules.

Eliminating doubt

Despite the pandemic and people successfully working from home, there is still a stigma that those working from home are not working as hard as their office-based colleagues. A time and attendance system eliminates this doubt as task monitoring is one of the functions, as well as being able to see who is working from where and in real-time.

Scheduling solutions

Businesses that employ shift schedules greatly benefit from a trusted scheduling solution that helps them be at their most productive.

IT solutions particularly help large-scale manufacturing or retail businesses with large groups of employees working set shifts. These solutions facilitate more efficient roster management, attendance monitoring and increased productivity through real-time data analysis. 

FlexTime’s VisionTime system offers the latest in innovative and agile technology for all time-management solutions, whether it’s fixed, flexible or remote. It revolutionises the management of staff working time rotas whilst also enabling shift arrangements. The system helps businesses plan and manage work-schedules. This enables greater flexibility which gives employees greater control over their roles. It reduces absenteeism, the need for overtime, staff turnover and it provides increased accountability amongst employees.

What’s more, FlexTime’s rostering solutions help support Covid-19 social distancing protocols, allowing users to see how many staff members are in an office and what hot desks are available at any given time.  

What features does VisionTime’s Time & Attendance system have?

  • Clocking in and out

VisionTime enables companies to choose the best way of capturing time records. It offers over 30 methods that employees can use to clock in and out.

  • Rostering and scheduling 

It allows companies to build and forecast rosters and schedules to stay on budget with overtime calculations and other advanced features. It also automates the capture of time for payroll and creates accurate reports.

  • Attendance reporting

Companies benefit from real-time analytics on current attendance levels. The absence management software also easily integrates with local legislation so employers can stay compliant.

  • Data analysis

It uses real-time analytics to optimise scheduling for maximum productivity and to improve employee retention.

  • Job timing 

It keeps track of the tasks employees are working on with projected, real-time and retrospective job recording.

  • Visitor management

It securely keeps track of all suppliers, customers and regular visitors to premises.

Feeling supported

It’s important for all employees to feel fully supported and not feel they are being monitored when it comes to time and attendance recording. FlexTime solutions acts as an ‘honest broker’ between both the employer and the employee because the welfare of both groups is considered.  

Far from being a ‘one size fits all solution’, FlexTime helps solve the needs of the employer and employee by offering a two-way solution that allows everyone to be at their best in the working environment. FlexTime systems can be tailored to suit the needs of every business and its employees. There are also many ‘off the shelf’ service offerings, which are also highly effective. 

At first glance, it may seem that manual methods of time and attendance tracking are cheaper but over time research shows that using software gives a return on investment in more ways than one. 

Companies that use software are freeing up staff resources that were allocated to manually processing and transcribing the payroll for other tasks. HR staff will no longer be subject to enquiries about annual leave entitlement and annual leave requests. Another money-saver is that the software wipes out any errors which could lead to staff being overpaid for submitting inaccurate timesheets. 

One of the biggest benefits of time tracking is the insight it gives you into your company’s health and profitability. Time tracking helps you to see exactly where resources are being spent. But perhaps the timeliest benefit is that this software will move your business into the new era of flexible and remote working that was thrust upon the world due to the outbreak of Covid-19.

The benefits of this flexibility is that employees have an increased feeling of personal control over their schedule and work environment. It increases productivity and satisfaction and has a knock on effect on retention. It reduces burnout as employees can take breaks when they need them. It leads to increased morale, engagement and commitment to the organisation. It is a win-win situation for all concerned. 

For further information visit www.flextime.ie.

 

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