Employee Attendance Tracking Gets IoT Treatment
Modern employee attendance systems are in desperate need of an upgrade. Can IoT location-based solutions help employers and employees work more smoothly?
Most countries and states have strict requirements about employee attendance. Daily work hours, overtime, leave, everything must be carefully tracked, and that is the responsibility of managers and business owners in charge. Even those who are not directly related might be responsible for the accuracy of these numbers, and these managers might find the climate can be very complicated. What was once done with a simple time-stamp card is now done by several technologies or, perhaps worse, no system at all.
Many firms are now employing location-based technologies to fill in the gaps. Beacons and tags are small Bluetooth devices that broadcast a near-constant radio signal to smart devices. This signal can be used to do almost anything a developer can think up. More importantly, they ensure that the employee’s records accurately match the employee’s actual movements.
Employee attendance tracking isn’t about micromanaging. It’s about understanding employee movements. Proper HR attendance tracking can even be used to fulfill legal requirements and keep companies compliant.
Poor Tracking Can Lead to Legal Complications
Employees suing for unpaid wages are not uncommon, and the practice drastically increased in the past decade. USA Today found that the number of these law suits increased 32% between 2008 and 2011. Expectations about the accuracy and detail of employee attendance tracking is rising around the globe, and technology is offering solutions that were never before possible.
In the past, and even today, offices rely on several different methods for HR attendance tracking. Some companies are turning to RFID, web solutions, and even cameras, while others still use manual solutions. Employees physically sign records and file them away. However, these manual tracking solutions have several drawbacks including being imprecise and easily manipulated or misplaced.
Moreover, the ever decreasing cost and increasing capabilities of Bluetooth LE beacons makes them the most competitive new tool in the employee attendance tracking market. They’re hands-free, automated, exact, and work in combination with simple and streamlined software. No more forgetting to log in; beacons do it all on their own.
Talking to employees about attendance is hard even in the best of situations. Having accurate, automatically collected data can make it much easier to recognize problems before they arise and to fully optimize your business.
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What are Possible Problems from Improper Employee Tracking?
Hourly employees, like those often found in the food and beverage industry, construction, retail, and other fields, require particular diligence. It can be difficult to keep track of employees on a daily basis, but knowing with certainty what hours were or were not worked can be paramount to avoiding trouble in the future.
Poor tracking can lead to:
- Tax problems
- 401k difficulties
- Incorrect wage distribution
All of these have led to more advanced employee attendance tracking solutions. Many firms are turning to cloud-based programs that let employees log in and record their hours. However, these solutions are also very similar to the manual logs of old. Times may not be exact, scheduled breaks can be missed, and it usually requires an amount of effort on the part of the employee.
How Can Technology Help?
Location-based technologies built upon Bluetooth LE beacons are becoming increasingly popular in the field of employee attendance tracking. They have the unique ability to act without employee interaction and completely automate the attendance tracking process. Moreover, they are less invasive than other modern methods. While fingerprint and hand scanners are effective at cutting down on fraud, they also cause huge problems as employee, understandably, don’t feel comfortable with such solutions.
Perhaps just as important, beacon infrastructures were not previously viable solutions. Now, they are advanced and affordable enough to be implemented by businesses of every size.
Australian Mall Tracks Employee Attendance with Beacons
Employee attendance verification systems in Australia are highly common due to the country’s strict regulations and requirements from insurers. One local shopping mall examined several solutions and found older technological options would cost them between $1140 and $1520, but that was far too costly.
They chose to partner with beacon service provider Elite-ID to use Bluetooth LE beacons for employee attendance tracking. This solution cost half of their other options. Furthermore, the solution proved to be incredibly easy to implement and was installed in only a week’s time.
What are the other ways location-based technology can streamline workplace operations? Let us know in the comments.