The ultimate guide to Employee Attendance

The ultimate guide to Employee Attendance

Employee Attendance is not just tracking hours or clocking people in and out; it’s about the measures your business takes to ensure productivity.

A comprehensive employee attendance process will not only help keep employees at work, but will minimise unauthorised absence, boost productivity and offer a fully transparent process for attendance issues in the workplace.


Just click on the section you’re most interested in below to skip ahead:

Why do you need to track attendance?

There are a host of reasons why attendance tracking is vital in all businesses, and many articles outlining why employee time and attendance software is needed.

For us however, it comes down to two main reasons:

  • It reduces absenteeism – If they know their absence is tracked, workers are less likely to be absent.
  • Tracking attendance will show you how productive you are – labour costs, hours worked per job and much more.

The aim is never to make workers feel like a ‘big brother’ type system is watching, but instead help promote transparency of pay, absence and rewards.

When it comes to disciplinary action, such as writing a warning letter to employee for excessive absence, your data will also ensure you have the correct facts in place to do so within the law. If ever you get taken to a tribunal, an attendance system would also help prove the employees’ wrongdoing.

Other reasons to track attendance include:

Working Hours Regulations –

In the European Union, you need to track employee hours to prove compliance to working hours regulations, break times and more (see EU Work Time Directive).

We are yet to see if this ruling will come into effect post-Brexit, however being able to prove you are compliant with Working Time Regulations is just as important.

Financial Considerations

According to a 2017 study, 16% of employees have admitted to clocking in their co-workers or being clocked in by their co-workers. This form of time-theft, better known as buddy clocking, can cost businesses hundreds of pounds over a year.

On top of deliberate time theft, is accidental and human error costs. Payroll errors and a mismatch between hours recorded and hours actually paid can see your employees being over or underpaid.

With an employee management system this is a thing of the past, as you’ll have your working hours and payroll data automatically calculated for you, saving you time, money and resources.

Signs that your organisation needs an attendance management system

No matter what sector you’re in, keeping track of your employees is an important task.

Whether you have an hourly rate, shifts or a standard 9-5, making sure your employees are where they say they are will not only ensure there’s no time theft. But will also ensure your organisation has the labour power you need for the output you scheduled for.

For health and safety reasons, an attendance management system will also help with important tasks such as fire roll call.

But how do you know you need an attendance management system? We suggest looking for these tell-tale signs.

  1. You currently have no digital attendance tracker – leaving your timesheets open to time theft and payroll distortion.
  2. You have no way to tell compliance risks – lateness for H&S officers etc.
  3. You don’t have the data to make informed business decisions.
  4. Scheduling causes a nightmare each month, or tracking tardiness is an issue.
  5. There is no work attendance policy.

Why use employee attendance software?

Now you know the reason why you might need help with your workforce management, you must now be asking – but why does it need to be software? Can’t I just manually do the tasks needed to optimise my labour?

Yes and no.

Yes, you can manually schedule, work out absence, collate payroll data, track holiday and much more, but it leaves you open to human error, time theft and a waste of vital human resources.

A software-based system will automatically manage day-to-day tasks such as adding overtime rules and calculating TOIL etc. Best of all, a system will complete the task in real-time, so you always have access to the most up-to-date data.

Using attendance software will also:

  • Increase accuracy and reduce costly human errors.
  • Ensure data integrity
  • Boost employee productivity
  • Reduce admin costs and
  • Enhance HR staff efficiency

Most importantly, your time and attendance system will do all of the above with little to no supervision.

Our Employee Attendance Cloud system will show you everything you need to know about your workforce in a single interface, saving you time on collating, analysing and storing your important data.

Cost of Absenteeism

Did you know the cost of sickness absence in 2019 stood at a median of £568 per employee?

Or that your company size relates to the number of sick days employees take?

It’s true! Large organisations with more than 1000 employees reported a median sickness absence rate of 8.0 days, an organisation with 100-249 staff had 5.7 days, and 1-99 employee companies saw just 3.8 days’ absence.

Of course, the cost of absenteeism is the cost of the employees’ wages or sick pay for a company, but more than this it’s the cost of production dips due to unfulfilled labour needs.

Lost productivity is a significant consequence of unplanned absences that is often overlooked when thinking about any time and attendance software ROI.

Other indirect costs of absence include:

  • Increased management and admin time
  • Interrupted work flow and productivity
  • Loss of customers or clients
  • Reduced quality or lost materials depending on industry

best way to track employee attendance

Employee attendance data is the lifeblood for your software, as it gives your system the data it needs to create reports, payroll exports and more.

You can collect this data in a host of ways, including manual and digital timekeeping methods.

Manual methods

Whether you chose to use a Bundy Clock, paper table or ask for times on slips of paper (or email), this method relies on employee honesty and organisation.

Too often we’ve heard of employers begging for timesheets on a Friday so they can get payroll done.

Clocking in and out

Digital methods

Excel spreadsheets and digital timeclocks offer you a chance to more accurately record worked hours and even automatically calculate time worked in some cases.

But if you want to get the data directly into a system, you need a clocking app or clocking machine.

We believe clocking in via app offers employers a hugely affordable and flexible method.

Employee Attendance Cloud clocking in App

Not only will an app give each employee their own clocking machine, minimising the spread of germs on shared surfaces. But it will also relieve employers of the responsibility of hardware costs and upkeep.

The Employee Attendance Cloud time clock app includes:

  • Time tracking
  • Timesheet information
  • Holiday requests and balances
  • Rota and schedules

Hardware clocking methods include fingerprint, facial recognition, or contactless RFID machines.

Whatever way you choose, make sure you have a clear employee attendance policy and procedure document, outlining clocking methods and what is expected of employees.

What Employee Absence Cloud offers

Employee Attendance Cloud is more than just time and attendance, it’s the next step in your workforce management toolbox.

We offer a host of functionality, all in one easy-to-use centralised system.

From day one, you’ll have the access to:

  • HR & H&S Management
  • Staff Absence Management
  • Workforce Planning
  • Time and attendance
  • Clocking in App

On top of this, you’ll enjoy a full reporting suite, workflow notifications and more.

Employee Attendance Cloud software has been designed to help businesses struggling with:

  • Time-consuming paperwork processes
  • Accurate working hours
  • Human payroll errors
  • Rota and work schedule creation and management
  • Absence and Holiday processes
  • Managing employee, H&S, Training and other HR tasks.

The cost of Employee Attendance Software

Depending on the scope of functionality you need, costs for an attendance system can run from nothing to thousands of pounds a month.

Employee Attendance Cloud prides itself on its affordable pricing structure, giving all business sizes access to enterprise-grade software.

Access to Employee Attendance Cloud starts from as little as £2.19 per user per month with 0 hardware costs thanks to our SaaS model.

50 – 100 employees£ 2.99 (ex VAT) per employee per month*
101 – 250 employees£ 2.79 (ex VAT) per employee per month*
251 – 500 employees£ 2.59 (ex VAT) per employee per month*
501 – 750 employees£ 2.39 (ex VAT) per employee per month*
751+ employees£ 2.19 (ex VAT) per employee per month*

Get in touch today

Employee Attendance Cloud includes:

  • Use of the clocking app
  • Free account set-up
  • Five hours of free tailored system training
  • Video sessions of this training for future use
  • A customised Employee Attendance Cloud URL
  • No tie in period – leave when you want

To book a demo, click here.

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