The importance of employee time tracking has made its way to the strategic table. Joining this essential business function are numerous sophisticated systems that touches every branch work hours. From scheduling to reporting, timesheets have moved beyond simple paper and punch cards.
Whether you need to update your current system, or this is the first time you are considering an automated solution, you have a host of solutions from which to choose. All proclaim to be the best timesheet software. Few come with options to make your investment bring many happy returns and satisfied employees.
With So Many Choices, Where Do You Begin?
The first thing you need to understand is all timesheet software programs are not created equal. Some only offer apps for employees and managers to access on different devices. Others deliver advanced features for cost and workforce management capabilities. Still, a few include all of these features and more.
Once you wade through the varied options, your ultimate decision should be based on what works best for your company. If improving productivity while reducing overall labor costs are crucial goals, there is a software program for that.
If you want to give employees self-service options to efficiently manage their time, plenty of timesheet solutions are available.
Know What You are Looking for in Timesheet Software
To help you narrow your choices, here’s a list of 10 must-have features for the 21st century employer.
1. Methods for entering data
The primary purpose of a timesheet is to enter actual hours worked. The dynamic workforce demands more than one way to accomplish this when you have employees working at different times and different locations.
Look for software that gives you and employees the flexibility to enter time from:
- Web-based portal
- Cell phone
- Network or wireless time clocks
- Voice response system
- Biometric fingerprint
Anyone of these, or a combination, will help you and your employees to never lose labor hours.
2. Ability to automatically approve timesheets
Employees submit detailed timesheets and managers receive notification without tracking each employee down before payroll closes. Real-time status updates are available for employees and managers to view. Whether one level or multiple levels of approval are required, the best timesheet software approval or denial with just a few clicks.
3. Ability to approve time off requests
Employees can request time off and managers can approve or reject the requests as soon as possible. Since managers have immediate access to schedules, he or she can determine if the requested days conflict with department needs.
The self-service option allows employees to view their leave balances without asking an HR rep or their managers for this information.
4. Simplified use of all features
Managers and employees can have multiple views of timesheets:
- Department summary
Different views give you the ability to get a brief or detailed look at labor hours. This information is helpful in generating reports and for future scheduling.
5. Employee management tools
Look for a software solution that is customizable for all employee types such as exempt, contractors and hourly. Payroll and company policies are beneficial to the system. Including your time and attendance policy helps to alert managers if issues arise.
6. Compliance with labor laws
One thing that will quickly eat into company profits is paying penalties and fines for avoidable noncompliance incidents. A good timesheet software solution includes FLSA compliance fields. You can keep track of things like shift differentials, overtime and exempt pay.
With regular pay calculations, you have error-free tracking of commission payments, salary and hourly rates.
7. Technical support when needed
Some software retailers and sellers deliver the product and you never hear from them again. You might get an 800 number to call for technical support, but there is no guarantee someone will be available when you need them.
Make sure you select a software program that comes with local and global support if you have locations overseas.
8. Send individual or group notification reminders
Keep everyone on the same page with system notification reminders. Let employees know when new schedules are posted or if overtime hours are available. Managers can also send reminders to employees to complete their timesheet for approval.
Everything related to timekeeping can be communicated via the notification system. Things like late timesheets, approval or rejection of time off requests or policy violations are sent directly to employees.
9. Keep company policies easily accessible
Every company policy related to time & attendance can be housed in the timesheet software. Employees can access the information from a self-service portal if they are unsure about something.
10. Ease of integration with other business applications
One cost-effective feature of timesheet software solutions is to integrate with current systems. Accounting software and payroll vendors should not need a system overhaul for compatibility.
Know what works for your company. Do not settle for anything less than the best timesheet software program that supports your business, boosts productivity and continues to work for you in the future.