Employee time tracking at work can be controversial. Employees don’t like to feel under surveillance by supervisors, and time tracking is frequently perceived as an attempt to catch employees doing something wrong. However, a well-implemented time tracking system is much more about boosting productivity, workplace effectiveness, and employee ownership of time management. Start getting more out of your time and your employees’ time with these four ways that time tracking can improve employee productivity and accountability.
Increase work time efficiency and minimize time wasting
Time wasting and work time efficiency are two of the biggest areas where time tracking gets a bad reputation among employees. When management starts tracking time, employees may feel that they are being policed and this breeds resentment. However, in a 2013 survey, 70% of employees admitted wasting 30 minutes of work time or more per day and created a list of ways to minimize employees wasting time at work. The main reasons for this were boredom, unchallenging work, missing incentives, and low work satisfaction.
To combat these feelings, use time tracking alongside a clear and well-communicated vision of how employee work and time management matters, and how they fit into larger company goals. Online employee time tracking systems TrackTime24 are great for tracking and reporting such data in clear and easy-to-share formats. Have a respectful, data-based discussion with employees about where time wasting occurs, and how best to maximize work time. This will go a long way toward increasing employee ownership of and accountability over their work time.
Hr.com puts tracking attendance at the top of its five effective strategies for improving employee attendance. “Out of sight, out of mind” makes it easy for employees to slip into bad habits with time sheets that only management views regularly, while a time tracking system that the employee views daily and that shows attendance history will promote self-accountability. Ideally, this stops tardiness and absenteeism from happening in the first place. However, if bad habits do begin to form, transparent attendance tracking logs allow management to address the problem before it gets any worse, and to do so based on data that all parties view regularly.
Time tracking data enables greater schedule flexibility
Although employee time tracking may seem like it creates a stricter work environment, there are actually a number of ways that it can be freeing. If the work allows for flex scheduling, online employee time trackers are a great way to give employees the option to work flexible hours or even to work remotely, while still maintaining careful, accurate work time logs. In the case of relatively inflexible shift work, time tracking data gives managers a much clearer picture of how much work is being accomplished by each employee, and thus who may be in need of a break or a day off to avoid burnout. Used in the right way, time tracking data gives management a valuable tool for monitoring employee contributions with a view to keeping workplace responsibilities equitable.
Use time tracking data to reward productivity
Recognizing and rewarding achievement, bad mistakes that make good employees leave, is a major factor in workplace satisfaction and thus employee productivity. In a 2016 survey carried out by inc.com, 45 percent of those interviewed said that a lack of recognition or reward for work would make them want to leave their job. Employee time tracking gives management a tangible metric for recognizing and rewarding employee performance. Of course, it’s not all about the number of hours an employee puts in, but recognition by company leadership of long hard hours, or a reward for finishing a project particularly quickly and efficiently can go a long way toward keeping employees more engaged at work.