Managing remote employees during coronavirus crisis is becoming a new normal in the beginning of 2020. Almost half of US economy and workforce is shifting to home office or remote work environment. If before staff was coming into the office every day, now people may work from home or in different locations. They may be frequently on the road meeting with prospects or clients. If your business has remote employees, you face numerous challenges when it comes to managing them.
Telecommuting employees can be difficult to manage because of the lack of face-to-face time managers have with them. Limited communication can affect morale and make it tough for leaders to effectively manage a project’s workflow. With the right systems in place, however, telecommuters can be just as valuable to the team as those who show up to the office each morning.
One of the biggest challenges is keeping track of their time for payroll, project management, and oversight purposes. Many companies rely on self-reporting, which is notoriously unreliable. Another alternative is to make all remote employees salaried, which presents its own set of challenges. Your remote employees undoubtedly consider telecommuting an important job perk. There’s no reason to alter your policy simply because you don’t have a good system to keep track of their hours.
Fortunately, there is a system that can solve almost all of your telecommuting employee time and attendance tracking issues. Secure PC-based clocking or Mobile Clocking enables employees to securely clock in from any location at any time.
PC clocking is made possible by attaching a biometric device to each of your remote employee’s laptops or PCs. Depending on your company’s needs, the system can be configured to recognize an employee by ID card, key fob, swipe card, or fingertip.
Mobile Clocking allows your remote workers to clock in and out any time using a mobile device via SMS, a web browser or with Mitrefinch mobile time and attendance app.
In addition, employees can use Employee Self Sevice Portal to schedule leave, look at their own attendance records, and even communicate with managers to explain or request absences or plan upcoming vacations.
Wonder if this system is right for your company’s off-site employees? Consider the following benefits.
Benefits of PC-Based Clocking
Telecommuting is becoming more and more popular throughout the world. For your business to stay on the cutting edge, you must have an effective way to attract and retain those who want to work off-site. A user-friendly and accurate method of time-tracking should be top on your list of must-haves.
One of the best things about this type of clocking system is that it benefits your employees as well as your company’s HR department. Truly a win-win situation, it allows employees the flexibility of telecommuting while giving managers the ability to accurately track time and productivity.
5 Employee Self-Service Benefits
Employees Can Clock In At Any Time, from Anywhere
It doesn’t matter if they are working from home a couple of days per week or spending months in another country. Employee self-service allows them to securely clock in and out as well as clock into tasks, projects, cost centers, and more.
Remote Employees Can Be Flexible
The type of flexibility offered by a system such as this is perfect for off-site employees who value being able to perform tasks on their own schedules.
Employee Self-Service Options Save Time
When your employees have to jump through numerous hoops to report their hours or progress on projects, they can easily get frustrated. This leads to inaccurate reporting, late reporting, or sometimes not even reporting at all. This system is quick, efficient, and user-friendly, allowing employees to report time easily.
Employees Can Easily See Their Own Records and Communicate with HR Managers
Whether they want to request leave or schedule a vacation, employees can easily utilize the system to efficiently manage their own schedule.
No software installation is needed. Many employees who are not office-based utilize their own laptops or PCs. Most would prefer not having tracking software installed. This system is accessible as long as there is internet access, which is readily available.
5 Employer Management Benefits
System Eliminates Buddy Punching
Are you worried that one of your employees is clocking in for another one? Biometric clocking confirms identity, putting buddy punching fears to rest.
Data Can be Viewed in Real Time
No more having to wait for systems to update or for employees to turn in time cards or reports. A time and attendance system allows managers to see everything in real time. They get instant notifications if a shift change is requested or if a vacation is planned.
Managers Can More Effectively Allocate Projects and Workflow
When they have instant access to employee schedules, managers can easily keep track of projects. They can also make sure the right employees have the right tasks.
Accountability is Improved
When off-site employees self-report their hours or are on a salary, they can easily lose accountability and focus. This system keeps them on track and honest without feeling micromanaged.
Payroll is Streamlined
Do you find yourself waiting to do payroll until some of your employees report hours? With this system, hours are always up-to-date, making it possible to perform payroll with no delays.
Having a secure clocking-in system in place that works for both the remote employee and management is key for business productivity. Utilizing a PC-based clocking system eliminates many telecommuting employee challenges and is beneficial for everyone on the team.
Best Corporate Practices to Manage Remote Workers
1) Use Technology
Time and attendance software, an automated payroll system, Employee Self service tools , employee management software and scheduling software are just some of the tools that will help you focus on developing your workforce in a diverse, remote setting to help your remote workers overcome any obstacle that may arise in unforeseen circumstances.
2) Trust Them
Remote employees tend to work best when they are trusted and are allowed to be independent. Although it is customary for companies to track them with the help of employee management software or evaluate their work performance through time and attendance software, self-motivation is still their greatest ally. Help develop a dynamic in which they are responsible for meeting their own targets.
3) Use a 360 Degree Feedback Method
Give importance to your remote employees and give them valuable feedback. Ask the clients and workers that interact directly and work with them to gather Intel to create a report. It will give a manager a broader and richer perspective on how the roles of each remote employee are perceived by others.
4) Make Use of Video Conferencing
Skype, Zoom, Telepresence, Google Video Chat and MegaMeeting can help you get communicate face-to-face in real-time with your remote employees to discuss any important matters which need to be resolved immediately.
5) MBO for Realization of Goals
Management by Objectives is much better than Management by Observation for setting goals and objectives effectively and for developing action plans for remote employees. This will help you evaluate their performance because of their actions and output.
6) Interaction Is the Best Policy
According to the best psychologists in their fields, workers who work remotely usually work alone and are at an increased risk of fatigue and burnout. It is essential to communicate with them to tell them how important they are to the organization and to provide them with human support and contact to help build trust, a supportive and close relationship. Help alleviate their stress by validating their duties.