While the world is returning to normal post-COVID-19, many employees aren't returning to the office.
Companies that never considered remote work are now embracing it. While many allow their staff to telecommute, others intend to permanently place some of their workers on the work-from-home model.
A 2020 Gartner survey showed that 74% of CFOs intend to transition some employees to remote work permanently.
Working from home makes a lot of sense from an economic and pragmatic standpoint. Less office space is required, and employees no longer have to go through the horrors of busy daily home-to-office commutes. These and more are the reasons why remote work is reshaping the future of the jobs market.
That said, the shift from the traditional 9-to-5 work model comes with its challenges. For example, tracking employee billable hours and getting them to concentrate can be difficult. In addition, some employers don't trust their workers to put in the same efforts at home as they do under supervision at the office.
That's where time clock applications come in. Thanks to these tools, it's easy to monitor remote workers and pay them accordingly. Some applications also come with team management features that help boost productivity.
What Is a Time Clock App?
A time clock app is a digital clock-in system that remote workers can use to clock in and out shifts. It's also called a time tracker, digital time clock, and punch clock app, among other names.
While every digital time clock is designed to track employee working hours, they work differently. For example, some come with built-in ticketing and invoice creation systems, and others feature robust productivity tools for managers and workers.
There are many benefits of using time trackers, and we'll be unpacking the most significant one by one.
Accurate Billable Hours and Paysheets
Companies that pay by the hour always want an accurate report of the time an employee spends on every official project. A competent digital time clock will log hours and send feedback to employers to confirm that remote workers are working on their tasks.
Most time trackers automatically stop the clock when the user becomes idle. They track working hours through mouse and trackpad movement and keyboard activities. Screenshots (blurred out by some apps) are sent to employers to have hard proof of how remote employees spend their time.
Clients billed by the hour can be charged without mistakes, with logged timesheets to justify each invoice.
What's more, automated time tracking reports eliminate manual time entry errors, which benefits both parties. This way, employers won't overpay remote workers, and employees get their salaries in full.
Trust in the Remote Workplace
2020 saw employers waste productive time obsessing over their employees' activities. It wasn't easy to rely on people who work on time-sensitive projects without on-premise supervision. This kind of worry erodes employer-employee trust, which could have far-reaching effects on the company.
Since time trackers serve as the manager's monitor, they can trust that remote workers are on the job. Mutual respect grows when employees clock in and out as they should.
The tool will provide the necessary information to employers, making it easy to trust their team's personal reports. This is especially true when these reports corroborate the time tracker's data.
The trust goes both ways. Employees can now work with the confidence that their words and reports hold water without anyone constantly breathing down their necks.
Better Project Management
Project management is one of the challenges of remote work. Supervisors often find it difficult to track a project's progress and to know who's working on specific tasks.
With the reporting system in time trackers, every employee can update their project managers on their task and its status. This way, their supervisor can know when to reassign jobs, add more hands to a project, and provide guidance.
Since the tracker shows how much time an employee spends on a job, it's easy for employers to know the collective time it takes the team to execute a project. This way, they can assess efficiency and work towards improvement.
With a better sense of the time it takes to finish such projects, organizations can draw up accurate proposals, project workflows, and time management practices in the future.
Since employees don't have to work from the office, they can travel anywhere without dropping work. A project doesn't have to be put on hold because an employee has to take care of urgent business out of town. The time clock app can continue to track working hours regardless of location.
With time clock applications, it's easy to maximize this increased productivity. Distractions can be reduced as workers know they're on the clock.
Better Employee Management
Data provided by the time tracker can help managers measure each employee's strengths and weaknesses. For example, they get to know how much time they spend on each project. This way, it's easy to assign tasks to the best team.
Employees can also use the same data to manage their time correctly. For instance, they can properly create and work around schedules since they know the estimated time it takes to execute specific tasks.
Time Clock Apps Promote a Sense of Accountability
Employees will do their best to beat deadlines and execute tasks on time, knowing that the clock is ticking. This is one way to show how responsible and competent they are.
Time tracking programs will continue to play a significant role in remote work environments. They make life easier for managers and employees. Clients can be billed accurately, workers can generate perfect pay sheets, and employers can better understand their organization's workflow and schedule.