Time tracking gives you the opportunity to see how much time employees spend on each task, which can help increase productivity and accountability at your office. While there are many ways time tracking can improve your business, there are downsides that you should be aware of before you start tracking your employees’ time.
Cost and Labour
Depending on the time-tracking system you choose and the number of employees you have, the upfront costs could be hundreds or thousands of dollars. It also takes some effort on your employees’ part to learn the new system and log their hours correctly.
The cost also impacts the labour requirements. You can buy a more expensive and advanced system that simplifies time tracking as much as possible, or you can go with a less expensive option, like paper time cards, that requires more work.
Consider the labour involved with managing your time-tracking system and reviewing employee time data. Time tracking can make your business more efficient, but there’s also the possibility of it costing more than you gain from using it.
Employee Morale Issues
There’s nothing wrong with tracking your employees’ time when they’re on the clock, and many employers do it. After all, you’re paying them. The problem is that employees can develop morale issues when you start tracking their time. They may feel like you don’t trust them or worry that you’re going to start micromanaging everything they do, even though the goal is for the system to cut down on how much you manage them.
Keeping your employees happy is an important part of getting the most from them and maintaining a positive work environment, which helps keep turnover to a minimum. A time-tracking system could lower employee satisfaction and affect their performance, unless you communicate openly with them and explain why you’re implementing the system.
Task Difficulty Level
With some tasks, it’s easy to assess an employee’s performance by the amount of work they complete compared to the time worked. For example, if you have employees doing data entry or making sales calls, you can find out whether they’ve been meeting your productivity requirements by looking at how much they accomplish in a certain amount of time.
Other jobs don’t lend themselves to tracking easily. This is especially true with creative professionals and employees in positions that require substantial brainstorming. An employee could be working hard for hours in one of these positions without doing much in the way of tangible results. If an employee brainstorms for four hours one day without a new idea, and then comes up with something brilliant at the start of the next day, it doesn’t mean those first four hours were a waste of time.
Before setting up time tracking at your business, weigh the pros and cons of doing so. If you’re unsure of whether to try it, you may want to start with a test run where you only track time on select employees to see how it works.