Monitoring the hours that employees work can be an emotive subject. Here we look at how to get staff on side when implementing a time and attendance system.
We live in an age where for many the boundaries between work and home life are becoming ever more blurred. With email, smartphones, tablets and wifi hotspots many people can work from any location at any time. While this can be great for business and staff alike, it also brings with it some downsides.
The extra flexibility to work from any location may make it easier to balance work and home commitments, but it has also intensified the already long hours culture in the UK. According to the ONS Britons, on average, work the third longest hours in Europe (with only Greece and Austria working longer). It seems that everyone is working longer, and many feel that they get little recognition for those extra hours that no-one else sees.
Sell the benefits
We’ve discussed the benefits to the organisation of introducing time and attendance software before, however, these systems also provide many benefits to staff, not least, providing visibility of extra hours worked. Clocking in and out is being welcomed in many more enlightened organisations, where staff realise that by logging their hours worked, they are being given credit for those hours. Lateness, long lunches, and general shirking is highlighted, to the benefit of the rest of staff that work hard.
The benefits of time and attendance systems to staff are many.
- Staff receive full credit for the hours they work
- No need to complete timesheets
- Payment is on time, and prone to far fewer errors
- Transparency means that there is nowhere to hide for those that are habitually late or take over long breaks
- Staff are often able to take time off for personal commitments, making the hours up later
- Policy on overtime, breaks, lateness is maintained consistently across the organisation – everyone, in whichever department, is treated equally.
- Supports both formal and informal flexible working patterns
- Lone workers are protected
- Use of mobile technology means staff can potentially clock in from anywhere
- Self-service features mean that staff can see what hours they have worked and see how much absence they have taken
Communication is the key
When introducing any new system, people need time to get used to the idea and understand how it will affect them personally. By keeping staff well informed and spelling out the benefits you will help to smooth the process considerably.
Many organisations have found that by introducing time and attendance a department at a time, the good news travels fast, and as a result other departments ask to be moved to the new system.
To promote strong user adoption, ensure that staff are well trained beforehand, and repeat that training with refresher sessions after a few months, so that after the initial excitement, they don’t forget all the features and functions.
Empower employees with self-service portals
By investing in a Self-service system, staff will feel more empowered as they can check their own balances for hours worked, and holidays and other absences taken.
With so many plus points for the majority of staff, as well as the productivity and visibility benefits for the organisation, it is no surprise that the trend for Time and Attendance software is very much increasing.