3 Smart Tips to Manage Employee Time-Tracking

February 21, 2017
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employee time-tracking

When it comes to employee time-tracking, HR managers have a lot to keep track of.

From reviewing time sheets to managing an employee’s vacation time, sick time, personal time, and more, it can be cumbersome to say the least.

And keeping track of hours and days worked is just one thing. HR managers also have to stay up-to-date with the latest regulations around employee time-tracking and time-off.

To help, we’ve compiled a short list of things that can help make managing employee time a little easier.

#1 – Understand Time-Off Regulations

Before you can begin to manage your employees’ time and attendance, you first need to be well-versed in the laws surrounding time off.

From regulations around meal breaks, PTO, family leave, and much more, there’s a lot to take in. And unfortunately, with our modern workforce of hourly vs. salary, and part-time, full-time, freelance, contractors, etc. – the laws around time-off are complex.

So, depending on the type of workers you have, the regulations will be different. To help, here are some basics you should be aware of:  

Vacation Time

There are no federal laws requiring vacation time, paid or unpaid, for holidays, sick days, vacation or other reasons – it’s completely up to employers. Check out our Ultimate Guide to PTO to learn more.

Family and Medical Leave (FMLA)

The only federal law around leave is the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), which requires unpaid job protection for:

  • Pregnancy
  • Adoption
  • Family military leave
  • Serious illness.

Fair Labor Standards Act

Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), covered employers must keep certain records for nonexempt employees, including hours worked each day and total hours worked each workweek.

#2 – Make Time-Off Policies Clear in Your Employee Handbook

In addition to federal, state, and local laws regarding time off, many companies are also offering additional or extended leave to their employees.

For example, Facebook’s COO, Sheryl Sandberg just announced updated benefits for new parents and grieving employees:

“Starting today, Facebook employees will have up to 20 days paid leave to grieve an immediate family member, up to 10 days to grieve an extended family member, and will be able to take up to six weeks of paid leave to care for a sick relative,” Sandberg wrote on her personal Facebook account. “We’re also introducing paid family sick time – three days to take care of a family member with a short-term illness, like a child with the flu.”

These new updates are amazing for Facebook employees, but they’re much more generous than what’s required and common.

That said, it’s important for employers to clearly outline all federal, state, and local laws, as well as time-off and leave benefits specific to their company. This helps hold employers accountable, keeps policies extremely clear for employees, and will hopefully reduce any confusion employees may have.

#3 – Use an HR Software

The argument here is pretty easy.

With an HR software equipped with time-off capabilities, HR managers and HR specialists can easily track and manage time-off requests, including reviewing and approving PTO, sick leave, personal leave, and more.

The right HR software will also allow hourly employees to clock-in and clock-out online, allowing managers to to easily view and approve their hours worked.

What’s more, to minimize any liability, SHRM suggests that employers maintain time-keeping records in a way can be audited (if necessary), which means that records must reflect the time actually worked. An HR Software will ensure this type of accuracy.

“Automated time-keeping systems typically have features to record a history of changes and who made them,” adds SHRM. “These systems may also be set up to obtain the acknowledgment of both the employee and the employer when changes occur.”

About

Raised by small business owners in Long Beach, California, Sarah loves creating meaningful content that truly helps people run their businesses successfully and efficiently. In addition to being a Content Marketing Manager at Zenefits, Sarah is a coffee addict, baked-good lover, and a LA Clippers fan.

Category: HR Tips & Trends, Compliance, Zenefits


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