Workplace Time Tracking Habits Revealed
New Research Gets to the Bottom of Employee Time Tracking Habits in 2017
So much of what you do as a business owner is tracking numbers and mobilizing your workforce for success. With limited time on your hands, it’s no wonder employees are often in charge of tracking and reporting their hours. Unfortunately, employees who track time manually, as opposed to using time tracking software, are more likely to report their time inaccurately, which could end up costing you big.
In February 2017, TSheets commissioned PollFish to conduct a survey of 954 adults about their time tracking habits at work.* We wanted to know:
- Who tracks time?
- What are common time tracking habits?
- How accurate are employee timesheets?
Who Tracks Time?
We were interested in talking to people who track time at work, so our survey weeded out those who do not. Of the 954 employees who we found do track time at work, we learned that 66 percent were hourly employees. Interestingly, 16 percent of employees who tracked their time were salaried.
Time Tracking Tools
- 25% Use a time tracking application
- 25% Use paper or a spreadsheet
- 14% Use a touch screen or kiosk
- 10% Use a punch card
- 7% Use biometrics
- 7% Use a point of sale system
- 3% Text or email hours
How Do Employees Track Time?
As outdated as paper timesheets and traditional punch clocks are, we know from experience that many companies are still looking for a modern, cloud-based, mobile time tracking system for their employees. As we suspected, the ways in which they clocked time varied, but a quarter of them did say they use some sort of time tracking app.
Still, manual time entry is all too common.
All that said, it’s shocking to find that 38 percent of employees who track time said they still use manual processes like paper time cards and traditional punch clocks. We suspect that this trend will change as more people discover the benefits of accurate time tracking.
How Crews and Groups of Employees Track Time
Crews and mobile workforces often start and end their job site workdays at the same time each day, and this was reflected in the data. Many people admitted to having a manager track their time, and 18 percent of our subjects say they have a manager track their hours for them. Meanwhile, 38 percent write in their own hours.
Time Tracking Habits and Trends
As experts in the time tracking arena, we wanted to know if there were any commonalities across the board in terms of time tracking habits. We were happy to learn that 75 percent of employees who track time find it very important. We do too!
We also found that employees aren’t only tracking time. They’re tracking time against specific items, such as jobs, tasks, clients, and mileage. Three-quarters say they classify their time according to this sort of criteria.
Weekly vs. Monthly and Daily Submissions
Every company operates differently, but when do people typically submit their hours for admin review? Our study found that 58 percent of our respondents said they submit their hours weekly or twice per month, and 31 percent said they submit time on a daily basis.
Buddy Punching, Time Theft, and FLSA Violations
Nobody’s perfect. But we learned in our survey that the timesheets submitted by employees could be incredibly flawed. Of employees surveyed, 16 percent admitted to buddy punching (or clocking in for another employee), and two-thirds said they have to make corrections to timesheet errors occasionally or often. Half of them admit to time theft and a quarter of them to working off-the-clock. And if you’re not tracking those off-the-clock working hours, you could be violating the FLSA.