If your company uses time clocks to capture employee time and attendance, you should be up to speed on biometric time clocks. When it comes to stopping time theft—which costs employers hundreds of billions of dollars in unearned wages every year—biometric employee time clocks are an employer’s best defense.
Unlike conventional swipe card time clocks, biometric time and attendance systems use proven biometric authentication technologies to verify employee identity at the employee time clock. Biometric employee time clocks work by measuring unique physical characteristic—an iris, a face, or a fingerprint—to recognize an individual. And it’s often as simple as placing a fingertip against a screen.
While swipe cards can easily be handed off from one coworker to another, biometric fingerprint time clocks are all but impossible to outsmart. As a result, they eradicate “buddy punching”—a rampant form of time theft where one employee punches in or out for another. According to Nucleus Research, buddy punching costs employers 2.2% of their gross payroll per year. That’s why biometric fingerprint time clocks should be on your radar.
When it comes to choosing a biometric employee time clock, employers have choices. Of course, it’s essential to evaluate biometric time and attendance systems as a whole. That being said, there are specific factors to consider when comparing the best biometric time clock, including the following.
What is the Process for Installing the Biometric Time Clocks?
The installation and setup of biometric time clocks varies widely from one time and attendance provider to another. Some require complete configuration on the client’s end, adding greatly to the cost and implementation time. Other biometric time clocks are virtually “plug and play”—you simply mount them on the wall and plug them in.
Here are some telling questions to ask potential time and attendance providers:
- Would your biometric employee time clocks arrive already configured for our company, or would that need to be done onsite?
- Do your biometric time clocks have wireless capabilities, or do they require special installation?
- Who handles the physical installation—you, us, a third party consultant—and exactly what is involved?
How Does the Biometric Recognition Technology Work?
Biometric fingerprint recognition, facial recognition, iris recognition—whatever biometric verification method you choose—your time and attendance provider should be able to tell you exactly how its technology works.
In addition, your provider should also be able to answer:
- How easy is it for employees to use? (What kind of training is involved?)
- How long does it take on average to clock in or out?
- What happens in the rare event that a given employee isn’t recognized by the system? (No matter how foolproof your biometric time clock appears to be, the provider should have a back-up process.)
Does the Biometric Employee Time Clock Include an Employee Self-Service Portal?
Any serious biometric time and attendance solution should include an employee self-service portal. Self-service portals are a must: they give employees direct access to HR information, while freeing up HR and field managers from answering routine questions.
But not all biometric employee time clocks provide access to the self-service portal, so ask. Those that do will allow employees to review their schedule, check and request PTO, even receive messages from their manager—all from the time clock. It’s a huge timesaver for HR, and employees love the convenience.
Can the Biometric Time Clock Withstand Our Workplace Conditions?
Some biometric time clocks will hold up just fine in an office or hospital setting but can’t withstand harsh industrial environments. Will a given biometric fingerprint time clock hold up on a loading dock, for example? How about in a construction trailer?
Be sure to tell your proposed time and attendance providers exactly where your biometric time clocks will be mounted and request proof that the equipment is up to the task.
What about Time Tracking Solutions for Offsite or Mobile Employees?
If part of your workforce moves from job site to job site, you need more than great biometric employee time clocks. You need great time-tracking methods that will work for these employees, yet still feed into your biometric time and attendance/payroll systems.
In that event, make sure your biometric time and attendance provider offers a variety of time collection methods such as mobile time tracking apps, online time tracking and simple telephone time tracking. Because no matter how advanced your biometric time and attendance system is, it’s only effective if it covers 100% of your workforce, 100% of the time!
Is a Biometric Employee Time Clock Right for Your Company?
EPAY Systems offers two of the best biometric fingerprint time clocks available to employers. Our biometric time clocks crush time fraud and buddy punching using reliable fingerprint recognition technology. They offer a wide menu of self-service capabilities (employees can even signoff on their timesheets right from the clock!). And that’s not all: our innovative Walter T6 biometric time clock includes a built-in camera and patented thermal printer, allowing employees to print paystubs on demand (and employers to save a bundle). Interested?