The impact of COVID-19 has been felt by companies, of all sizes around the world. Today, many of these companies have pivoted to remote work, while we, all wait to see what will happen with the pandemic as time goes on. If your company, was using a physical time clock before COVID-19 where employees punched in/out at the start and end of their shift, and your workforce is now remote, don’t be disheartened. ATS has a range of solutions, that include; employee self-service, online timesheets and contactless time clocks that are designed for the remote workforce.
Here are excerpts from article by Elizabeth Arnold and Chester Hanvey titled Mitigating the Compliance Risks of a Remote Workforce . The excerpts espouse a list of solutions that companies can adopt as some of their employees are now working remotely.
- Provide Clear Guidance to Employees: Supervisors play a critical role in guiding and enforcing employee time-management policies. The presence of sound internal policies can play an important role, as well. However, organizational researchers have found that policies alone are often insufficient mechanisms to ensure compliance. Direct involvement by supervisors can help achieve the organization’s compliance goals.
- Explore Technological Solutions: A variety of tech options are available to help promote accurate time reporting. For example, you may want to create a mechanism that allows employees to quickly and easily record time spent on compensable activities outside of the work shift. The greater amount of effort required for employees to report time in these situations will likely contribute to employees underreporting time.
Another approach to maximize accuracy in tracking work time is to implement software that has a “timer function.” Employees can activate and stop the timer as they perform different activities. To increase detail and efficiency, “activity codes” can be created to reflect the activity the employee is performing. Tracking work at this level of detail and frequency can improve the accuracy of information recorded.
- Scheduling Employees: Another strategy for driving compliance in some contexts is to create detailed schedules with specific time segments allocated to different activities, including meal and rest breaks. Schedules can be distributed through a shared calendar program, such as Outlook or Google, and can help to eliminate ambiguity about expectations concerning remote work.
- Conduct Audits of Reported Time: Perhaps the best way to ensure that an employee is reporting time accurately is to perform an audit. Organizational researchers have concluded that monitoring of employees and administering visible consequences for noncompliance are often necessary for policies to be effective. Auditing time records provides a mechanism to evaluate compliance directly. It allows you to make corrections to reported time, which not only ensures that you pay employees properly for their work but also minimizes your organization’s legal exposure.
- Driving Compliance Proactively: The rapid increase in the size of a remote workforce creates challenges related to compliance with labor laws. A variety of approaches exist to ensure that all work time is compensated for hourly employees and that the nature of the work is appropriate for exempt employees. The most effective strategy will depend on a number of factors, but you should be mindful and proactive about driving compliance.
While no one knows with absolute certainty what tomorrow might bring, we do know that change is sure to come. In order to truly pivot to a more digital organization, companies must be ready to adopt agile solutions that can easily shift gears, while adapting to new technology, and take on what’s yet to come.
You can explore ATS range of modern HCM solutions that include: ATSTimeWorkOnDemand, Payroll, HR, Employee Self-Service, Online Timesheets, ERP and analytics to help you drive productivity now and into the future.