While the ramifications of not implementing an easy-to-use time and attendance solution may be clear, the exact definition of “Time and Attendance” remains a mystery for many. In short, time and attendancetypically refers to solutions that collect, monitor, and control employee labor information and expenses.

Manually processing time and attendance data is often error-prone, complicated, time-consuming, and difficult to manage. Also, many companies using manual processes do not keep records of salaried employees’ work hours. Additionally, a common mistake of misclassifying an employee, made by major corporations and small businesses alike, could literally put a company out of business. A time and attendance system automates and tracks this information, enabling organizations to maintain compliance with federal, state, and local labor laws and mandates.

Automated time and attendance systemsutilize various methods of data capture, including mag-stripe badges, barcode badges, HID badges, biometrics (fingerprint, handprint, or facial recognition),mobile applications, or web punches to automatically collect and record employees’ work hours as they clock in and out. Real-time systems upload this information to the main database automatically and immediately, providing users with the most accurate and up-to-date information as soon as transactions occur.

Historically, labor costs are one of the largest expenses a company incurs; yet collecting the related data remains a manual process. Many companies are beginning to realizethe vulnerability of their bottom line when using archaic time and attendance processes, such as manual data collection, which is error-prone, complicated, time-consuming and difficult to manage. Moreover, these factors open organizations to risks for litigation.

By implementing an automated time and attendance system,companies are able to drastically reduce their payroll processing time and costs. With only a few clicks of a computer mouse, companiescan now easily view the number of hours worked by their employees, scheduled hours, overtime, etc., and proactively manage the labor costs.

Cheryl Abrazado of Mililani Golf Club Restaurant, which recently switched from manual timekeeping processes to an automated timekeeping system, says, “The old way of using time cards and calculating each in-out was a four-hour chore. With an automated timekeeping system, it now takes me no more than five minutes to process my payroll. It’s so easy for everyone to use and I love how simple it is to customize my own reports.”

Sherry Shotwell, Account Manager of Ardentwest Senior Living Management in Hemet, California, explains the benefits of choosing NOVAtime as its workforce management solutions provider:“It has cut our payroll preparation time by a substantial amount of time, coming from manual, hand-written timecards to using state-of-the-art biometric fingerprint time clocks and an automated time and attendance/workforce management system.”

Bill Clark, Director of Operations at Blake Real Estate and Affiliated Companies in Washington, D.C., statesthat paper-based methods of time collection involved many hours of manual effort to properly record and allocate time and cost. After implementing the NOVAtime 4000 Time and Attendance / Workforce Management solution, Mr. Clark states, “Blake has cut their total processing time by seventy percent, from approximately 100 hours per pay period to only 30 hours per pay period.” Mr. Clark adds that “every level of the process has been shortened and simplified.”

Because the NOVAtime system significantly reduced the time it would normally take to process payroll, Patricia Camero, who handles the human resource department for Ann Pearl Nursing Facility, says, “From being user-friendly to providing reports that previously were not available to us, the automated time and attendance system we installed through NOVAtime allows us to save hours in overtime, which saves us a significant amount of money.”


Finding the Right Balance

With the advancement of technology, the world is moving at a faster pace every day, making it very easy to be technologically outdated. Implementing an efficient-yet-thorough approach to collecting employees’ labor hours, calculating labor costs, and proactively managing human resources is one of the key factors to managing a successful business. Moreover, the proper employee management tools can provide protectionagainst costly labor law fines and damaging lawsuits.

According to studies from the Robert Half Agency and the American Payroll Association (APA), employee “time theft” – when employees clock in/out early or late or take long lunches or breaks – exceeds 10 minutes per day, per employee. The study estimates that manual timecard computation errors can cost 1% to 8% of a company’s annual gross payroll. This information may not be apparent using the honor system, but is definitely visible with the right automated time and attendance system.

Companies need to streamline processes and increase efficiencies to remain competitive. For many companies, having an automated time and attendance system is no longer a luxury, but a necessity. Sohow exactly are automated time and attendance systems impacting a company’s bottom line? The data collected from a time and attendance system is used to control and manage many costs an organization incurs. For example, overtime can be reduced by managing schedules and eliminating time theft, andpowerful reporting and scheduling toolsprovide information to make well-informed and timely decisions.

Whether to save money or time, a powerful automated time and attendance solution can relieve companies of the error-prone tasks involved with labor management. This enables business owners to spend more time focusing ontheir business, rather than working intheir business.The right balance is key to running an efficient and profitable business, regardless of the industry in which a company operates.

Implementing an automated time and attendance system goes beyond simply automating the manual, error-prone process of collecting and calculating timecards – it can profoundly change a company’s culture. NOVAtime asked a clientwhether their investment in an automated time and attendance system was paying off, and the company executive’s answer was a resounding “Yes.” The executive went on to add, “And our parking lot is full – on a Friday afternoon.”

A time and attendance / workforce management system is not just for major corporations. According to Mr. Landegger, Esq., of Landegger, Baron, Lavenant&Ingber,small manufacturing companies, non-profit organizations, dental and medical offices, law firms, accounting firms, and restaurants are easy litigation targets because of historic industry practices not in compliance with the law. He states that the average settlement for a small business is between $20,000 and $60,000. “Attorneys representing employees are willing to litigate the relatively small $20,000 case because of the opportunity to recover attorney’s fees in excess of $100,000. Regretfully, I have had to refer many small employers to bankruptcy counsel.”

For more information, check outanother NOVAtime article:“Automating Workforce Management: Compliance Tools to Protect and Save Your Organization.”(https://novatime.wordpress.com/2013/09/16/automating-workforce-management-compliance-tools-to-protect-and-save-your-organization/).


About NOVAtime

NOVAtime is headquartered in Diamond Bar, California, and has become the leader in integrating Time and Attendance Management with Human Resource and Payroll systems. Known for its scalable and leading-edge software and hardware technology, NOVAtime has been selected as the preferred Time and Attendance / Workforce Management solution provider by many of the best-managed companies in the world.

For more information about NOVAtime, please visit http://www.novatime.com or call 877-486-6682.