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Time Tracking—Best Practices and Mistakes to Avoid


Time tracking trouble? 

Employers have long relied on manual timecards to track employee work hours. Employees either clock in and clock out or they’re responsible for recording and reporting how many hours they worked and when. The manual aspect makes the process vulnerable to errors, miscalculations, and estimates. 

In one 2018 survey, 44% of business owners reported that they regularly struggle with timesheet errors. An astounding 92% of the respondents reported that the errors were typically caused by the user. The biggest problem? Employees forgetting to record their time. That was followed by employees recording their time incorrectly or to the wrong job.  

Educate employees about time tracking 

Make sure that your employees understand the importance of time tracking, as well as how your time tracking systems work and what’s expected of them. With each new employee, walk them through your time tracking tool, as well as the guidelines for how to track time. For instance, let employees know if they need to check-in to a mobile app daily (versus entering data later).

Provide them with information about how long their breaks should be, what type of personal business is permitted on the job, and how they can correct entries if they made an error. Educating your employees will not only reduce errors and misinformation but can also prevent employee time theft

Automate your time tracking system 

The next step to better employee time tracking is to get rid of manual timesheets and clocking in with paper time cards. Automating your record keeping provides a host of benefits, from making it easier for employees to document their work time to streamlining the record-keeping for your HR or office administrators. It also provides for 100% accurate timesheets, eliminating the need for timesheet rounding.

Time tracking apps can automate breaks and lunches so that they’re always included in the report and even set rules so help ensure the employees work the time they’re required—and not more or less. 

Make time tracking easy for your managers

Time tracking poses a problem for some employees, but it can also be the least favorite part of a manager or supervisor’s job. Managers routinely have to collect all employee timecards or reports, check them for accuracy regarding billable time worked, overtime, and correct any errors. What seems like a simple task can take up hours each month or week, especially if managers have to keep track of employee time because employees aren’t good about reporting their work hours.

Avoid these 3 time tracking mistakes

  • Not collecting enough detail about employee work hours
  • Not leveraging time tracking software features
  • Not combining payroll, worker’s comp and time tracking solutions ‍

Time to clock out? 

Improving your employee time tracking doesn’t take much—and it’s well worth the effort. Explore how a people platform like Hourly can make time tracking easier for your employees, while also providing your company with efficiency, time savings and more. 

This article was written by Kelly Kearsley and original full version posted on Hourly.io

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