Many workplaces and companies still make use of the traditional punch clock system because this is the way they have become accustomed to keeping track of employee time. For them, using a traditional punch clock serves as a simple way of being able to keep track of employee hours worked at the end of a given work or pay period and reduces the hassle of manual time logging.
As time progresses, new and more advanced systems of employee attendance and time tracking have been developed which exposes the traditional punch clock to be rudimentary and basically on its way out. These systems have greatly increased the scope of what can be accomplished with a time tracking to well beyond simply tracking time.
While the punch clock has served as a valuable predecessor in facilitating advancement, the time has come for it to make way for more current and more efficient methods of employee time tracking. For any business to function as the well-oiled machine it is designed to be, there are certain flaws of the traditional punch clock system which must be dispensed with. Here are the reasons why traditional punch clocks have done their time.
Employees Can Be Dishonest About Their Time
Traditional punch clock time logging makes it so easy for employees to punch in on each other’s behalf. This popular distasteful practice and problem in the workplace is known as buddy punching. It makes it possible for an employee who is not physically present at work to be placed on record as having started working and is entitled to the requisite financial compensation.
This has resulted in many a loss of revenue and undeserved overtime payments to employees who have done this. The drawback is also that unless a physical check is done, there is no real way proving that the employee was in fact not present, which makes it difficult to dispute.
There Is a Lot of Room for Human Error
When the time comes for the payroll to be generated, errors in recording the punch times can easily be made as employees have the tedious task of manual inputting the data into a payroll system in order to generate paychecks based on those hours. Errors may be made when employees become tired, as well as there may have been errors made because an employee forgot to actually punch in their time.
These types of errors result in incorrect payments and disgruntled employees especially if they have been underpaid. The converse is true where an over payment error has been made and the employee realizes that they actually haven’t earned a bonus, which they will be required to give back.
Traditional Time Punching Wastes Valuable Time
Sometimes in large industries there is actually a line in which employees must stand in order to able to access the clock. In addition, some clocks are not conveniently placed close enough to the actual workstation for every employee and so valuable time is spent navigating between areas to access the clock.
Additionally, the human resources staff required to collate information from these time cards usually require large blocks of time in order to be able to do so. In a bid to not interfere with the regular day to day functioning and efficiency of the department, these duties may be relegated to overtime, which is an additional payroll expense.
The Use of Time Cards is A Recurring Cost
To constantly have material for the employees to be able to log their work times on a traditional punch clock system, time cards have to be continually purchased. This creates an added expense and is even greater in the case of larger companies. In this era where environmentally friendly solutions are the order of the day, using a paper system is not in the best interest of the environment at all.
The other side of the coin has to do with the fact that if there is ever a malfunction in the system, the staff will have to revert to a pen and paper logging system for the period, which is even more tedious to accurately keep track of than the time card system.
The Traditional Punch Clock System Has the Potential to Cause Huge Financial Losses
Because of the way the system is structured from the act of logging into the processing of the resulting data, it is a very time consuming an inefficient way to try to keep track of employee hours worked. It is costly to generate the payroll, in terms of the time which must be invested to do so, it is costly in terms of the errors which will inevitably be made and the time required to fix them (which will also be paid time) and it is costly in terms of maintenance. The losses also due to dishonesty are significant.
It is clear that there are more efficient and financially prudent ways to keep track of employee times. Why not invest in a system which will bring benefits to the company by providing other useful data which can be utilized to improve processes and overall efficiency?