Is Your Business On Time with Monitoring Employees on the Job?

As a small business owner, do you ever stop and think about if you are getting all the necessary time out of your employees each and every day?

If you feel like you are not getting all of their attention on the job,not always compensating them the proper amount or could in fact be risking not complying with state and federal payroll obligations, are you going to do something about it?

According to Nucleus Research, businesses that do not have an automated time and attendance solution oftentimes overpay employees by 1.2 percent. For a small business that has 15 employees, that can lead to more than $1,500 a year.

Meantime,  a Web survey from America Online and Salary.com notes the typical worker admits to wasting away 2.09 hours per day, not including lunch. Over the span of a work year (and even after accounting for time employers figure on being wasted), that totals some $759 billion on salaries for which companies obtain no apparent benefit.

With the New Year just around the corner, will time management be more of a focus with your small business? If the answer is yes, do you know how to go about it?

Some of the ways and reasons small business owners can and want to properly manage time spent by their employees includes:

* Getting a number of quotes – Just like when you shop for any other product, make sure the effort spent looking for time tracking software is involved. You want to get a number of quotes, see if you can get some free trial demos, and check the background history of each provider, thereby seeing if they have any financial or customer service issues. Also check with each one to see if they have a backup plan for recording employee hours in the event the software is temporarily inactive. Finally, check to see what level of security they offer when it comes to properly documenting and maintaining privacy for each worker’s time on the job;

* Installing time software – With a simple installation on employee computers, business owners can record the time workers are spending doing (or supposed to be doing) their jobs. The right software program can help document those workers who more times than not arrive late, leave early, extend their breaks and lunches, and spend extended periods of time surfing the Internet. You can also monitor the hours spent working by those employees who travel for you or work via telecommuting. By eliminating time theft, you enhance the opportunities to meet customer demands, thereby bringing required revenue into your business;

* Monitoring common meeting areas – While workers are entitled by law to a lunch break, that doesn’t mean they should be adding 10, 15, 20 minutes and so on to their breaks. Having security cameras in common gathering areas like a lunchroom or lobby can cut down on people abusing such breaks. You can also determine if people are coming and leaving work at the wrong hours;

* Doing away with manual recording – If you are relying on your workers to manually and properly record their hours spent on the job, many will follow through accordingly. Others, however, will try and cheat the system, leaving you with lost work time and revenue. By having a software program installed to monitor hours, you do away with those who would cheat the system, not to mention a paper trail. Finally, there is no need for some workers to go to a manager to have time cards approved and signed before payroll is due;

* The need for overtime – In some cases, workers will be asked to spend additional time on the job to meet customer demands. When that happens, an installed software program can easily document the extended hours put in. This also does away with the potential for cheating by inflating one’s overtime hours they claim to have worked while you may have been out of the office;

* Everyone plays by the rules – Finally, it is important that all workers play by the rules once they have been established. If you have managers coming and going as they please, yet those under them are not afforded some or all of the same luxuries, you have the potential for mutiny on the bounty in the office. While there are obviously going to be some exceptions to the rules, having some workers forced to use time tracking software and others not can be fuel for an unintended fire.

If the time is now to properly monitor your workers, what are you waiting for?

About Liz Christensen

Liz Christensen is an Account Executive at inQbation and a professional social media junkie.
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