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Time Tracking Expectations vs. Reality

Amy Bourne |

Reality has an odd way of shattering our expectations. This applies to time tracking as much as anything else. Many business owners have general expectations of what time tracking systems should and shouldn’t do for their business.

Often, however, the reality doesn’t quite measure up when it comes to getting the most from your employees’ time. Here are a few common time tracking expectations—and the reality that goes along with them.

Expectation—My Employees Accurately Track Their Own Time

We’d all like to believe that our employees (and anyone else we meet, for that matter) are honest, hard-working people. We want to think they have the company’s best interest at heart. You paid someone for 40 hours of work, so you figure you must have gotten 40 hours of work out of them.

Reality—Time Theft Is Still a Common Occurrence

Unfortunately, buddy punching and time theft cause massive losses of revenue for businesses across industries. A 2014 study by the American Payroll Association found that employers might be losing as much as 4.5 hours per employee per week—and not just for a small number of businesses either. Over the course of a year, that adds up to significant losses.

Expectation—My Existing Time Tracking System Saves Me Money

Whether it’s a tried-and-true paper time tracking system, an Excel-based time card solution, or any number of other options, you might feel like you’ve done your part to spend as little as possible on time tracking. And it’s true: these existing time tracking systems probably don’t cost you much, if anything.

Reality—Outdated Time Tracking Systems Can Secretly Cost Thousands

The problem with these ‘cheaper’ time tracking methods is they often actually cost you in the long run. Whether it’s tracking down paper timesheets (which can require excessive amounts of time), processing large amounts of data (which takes time and can be prone to errors), or even issues that cause data to vanish completely, you might be losing a small fortune just to save a few bucks on time tracking.

Expectation—My Employees Are All Salaried, So I Don’t Need to Track Time

Most people think the only purpose for collecting time data is so your payroll department knows what to pay your employees. From punch-in to paycheck, you track an employee’s time so you know exactly how much to pay them—nothing more.

Reality—Time Tracking Can Help Inform Major Business Decisions

The truth is, the value of time tracking extends far beyond an employee’s paycheck. With accurate time data, you can benchmark how long certain types of projects take, how many employees it takes to complete certain jobs, and even how big your workforce needs to be. All of these decisions can help make your business more successful and, ultimately, more profitable.

Embrace Reality and Modern Time Tracking

If you’ve ever faced any of the challenges above, you’ll understand the benefit of effective time tracking. The good news is: you’ve got plenty of options. With ExakTime, employers can collect time and attendance data from their employees quickly, cheaply, and accurately—no more time theft and no more lost or inaccurate data. We’ve got a solution for every need, too.

Whether it’s our employee time clock app, our web-based time tracking software, or our wireless rugged time clocks, you’ll have 100% accurate data in no time.

Fill out a form to learn how ExakTime can custom-tailor a time tracking solution for your business.

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Amy Bourne is the marketing copywriter for ExakTime. She enjoys learning about the real challenges faced in the construction-related field, and providing content that helps business owners work smarter.

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