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How to ensure no one is padding their time clock

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Your employees' time is your company's most precious resource. Time is a vital component in the cost of doing business. But what happens when your employees are being dishonest about their time? This can essentially cost you hundreds and thousands of dollars per year. There are some specific ways you can know if they are cheating your time clock or not. Here is how to ensure no one is padding their time clock.

There are many instances where employees are "padding" their time clock. What this essentially means is they are not clocking in and out at the right time during their work day. Padding a time clock can be done a few different ways:

Personal time
One common way padding is done is when employees take breaks or take personal time without clocking out. For example they choose to: talk on the phone to friends, email or chat online, go out for a smoke break when they are on the clock and should be doing company work. This is one of the most common ways people pad the time clock.

"Buddy punching"
Another way is when other people may clock their friends out after they have already left their shift, giving them credit for more hours than really worked. Having friends or co-workers clock employees in early, before their shift, is also a common practice. This may be done because employees are going to be late and don't want to get in trouble, so this appears as if they made it to work on time. Or, they just want to get some extra hours in so this is an easy way to get paid overtime.

Payroll
Once time sheets are sent to payroll, mistakes can be and are commonly made. It's very easy for numbers to be added wrong, especially when payroll staff may be in a hurry to get home or are anxious to start their weekend. Again, friends in payroll have also been known to be a little generous to those employees they like.

These ways of padding the time clock is obviously highly dishonest, but it happens all too frequently. Many employees feel that they work hard and deserve a little of their own time and they should get paid for it too. The problem is that the more this happens the more employees will try to get away with it. Employees may enjoy the extra cash at the end of the pay period, but it reality it is costing the company hundreds and thousands of dollars a year just because of dishonesty.

If this seems to be commonly happening in your workplace, there are some things you can do to better protect the company from giving away any more unearned money. Most companies today are choosing better systems that make it almost impossible to pad the time clock. They are also paying more attention to their employees and making sure they are being honest.

Today, most companies are choosing hybrid time and attendance clocks using a combination of employee time keeping software and hardware and I.D badges and or fingerprint verification. These machines come in a variety of sizes and can be easily installed just about anywhere.

Most of these hybrid clocks have software that manages almost all of your business expenses. Most take care of accounting and billing, they streamline timesheets, employee payroll, expense reporting and project invoicing.

These new and improved time clocks also integrate I.D. badges that must be used to clock in and out and or fingerprint verification. Having fingerprint verification ensures that only the employee can clock themselves in or out, nobody else can do it for them. Each user must enter a code and then press their finger against the fingerprint reader to verify it is them. This ensures that their can no longer be any "buddy punching".

For those employees taking advantage of personal time, some companies require each employee to take certain regulated breaks throughout the day. This is where they can get any of their personal things done. These breaks are monitored and required. Having such required breaks makes allotted time where employees can have time for themselves, lessening the dishonesty of their time during work hours.

Researching how to make sure no one is padding their time clock is important, especially if you are running your own business. Follow these guidelines and don't let your employees take advantage of you!

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Posted by DF
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