Figuring out the best method to track employee time can be a difficult task. It requires understanding multiple facets of your business and knowing the full function of an online employee time clock and what it can do for your small business.
When keeping time for your employees, there are essentially two methods to do it, manually and automatically via software.
Each method has benefits depending on your unique situation. However, there is a downside to manual data entry and software that most businesses should be aware of before deciding on either method.
Here are some of the considerations to make when choosing a timekeeping method.
What Type of Employees Do You Have?
Deciding whether to use an online employee time clock or manual timekeeping system will vary depending on the type of employees you have. If you pay your employees hourly and they complete work over the course of the day, then you likely need to have the ability to consistently and accurately track hours.
In this case, you will want to use an online time clock software because it automatically logs employee hours, punches, breaks, and pay rates with down-to-the-minute accuracy. This makes keeping count of multiple employee’s hours and schedules a snap.
An online timecard system is also quite useful if you have remote, hourly workers since they also need to be accounted for, but it can be more difficult since they are working remotely.
Conversely, if you have employees that are paid a flat salary, or you pay by the project, then you may want to stick to manual data entry. It is important to note that manual timekeeping is challenging to track and prone to errors, but it may be the right option depending on your situation.
What Issues Are You Facing?
Depending on your specific needs, you may have particular issues that you want to solve. The primary benefit to manual timekeeping is that there is no learning curve or upfront cost to implement it, compared to using an online employee time clock.
However, if you face issues of time theft, absenteeism, or low productivity, you may want to consider the benefits online timesheet software can bring. For one, each employee’s clock in is unique, so there is less opportunity for time theft. You can also track employee attendance and productivity through features built into the software.
Online employee time clock software also allows you to monitor employees and readily address issues before they become a drain on your business. Small businesses, in particular, have to rely on every employee to get their job done so that they can stay afloat and even start making significant profits.
What’s Your Niche?
Depending on your specific field of business, you may prefer manual records over online employee time clock software. In most cases, though, timesheet management software benefits outweigh the initial cost and learning curve.
For example, businesses that bid on a per-job basis can still use online time clock solutions because they can collect data over time on employee performance and use that data to further improve their bidding and performance on jobs over time.
Similarly, even for a small business, if you have more than a few employees that track time hourly, you need to consider online time clock software. It is complicated and time-consuming to track employee time manually.
Ultimately, the decision will come down to how you record time for your employees and what you need out of your time-keeping method. If simplicity and low upfront costs are your goals, then manual time tracking may still work for you.
However, if you want to have a productive workforce with less managerial oversight and better functionality, you would be wise to use some type of online employee time clock software.