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Insight Works

The Pros and Cons of Barcoded Time Tracking


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Are you in the manufacturing or warehousing sector and still using paper-based methods for tracking operations? It may be time to leave that antiquated approach behind and step into the here-and-now. By using a product like Insight Works’ Shop Floor Insight, a powerful add-on for Business Central boasting barcode scanning capabilities, you can track labor time in a much more future-oriented way than through manual paper-based time tracking.

So the question isn’t really “is paper or barcoded time tracking better?” but rather “what are the pros and cons associated with a barcoded tracking approach?” Indeed, when it comes to managing your employee time tracking and timesheets, you’re not going to want to stay in the past; if you are paying employees for hourly work, it’s important to consider barcoded time tracking as part of your normal routine. When a working system is in place, it eliminates the need for manual tracking, ensuring accuracy during pay periods so you can maximize profits.

We’re here to tell you that exploring a barcoded time tracking system – and looking at potential drawbacks – helps you create a platform that works for you and your employees.

A Brief Look at the Barcode Scanning Revolution

Barcode scanners, biometric scanners and even retina scans have become popular with companies that choose to utilize advanced technologies in their day-to-day operations. One way this technology is being used by organizations is by allowing employees to swipe a badge on a wall mount, or door mount, card system so that they can gain access to a room or specific department; the other major way it’s being used, of course, is to accurately track employee and contractor time and attendance with time tracking solutions like the aforementioned Shop Floor Insight.

We can tell you from vast experience that barcodes eliminate the possibility of human error, as the occurrence of errors for manually-entered data is significantly higher than that of barcodes. A barcode scan is also fast and reliable, taking infinitely less time than entering data by hand, and, what’s more, using a barcode system reduces employee training time.

Getting Into the Benefits and Any Disadvantages

With more industries than ever before learning about and reaping the benefits of barcode technology, the value of fast, accurate data collection becomes fully realized. Though barcode tech has been around and used successfully in certain industries for decades, the revolution in the way we think about and use data has afforded new perspectives on barcode technology.

Pros of Barcoded Time Tracking

  • Works synergistically to improve the efficiency of business operations.
  • Reduces errors
  • Saves money by reducing labor expenses associated with keeping payroll.
  • Improves organizational efficiency and performance by analyzing how a workforce uses time.
  • Provides the opportunity for summary reports of detailed job and operation data to provide labor management team performance snapshots of an organization.
  • Provides data to answer questions regarding how a business runs – such as whether having one fewer employee in a department negatively impacts production, if a junior employee can perform the same job/transactions as a more senior-level employee at a higher salary, etc.
  • Gives management teams the tools they need to ensure that labor decisions they make are cost-efficient (they can easily monitor excessive absence, overtime and paid time off, etc.).
  • Ensures government, contract and customer compliance.
  • Increases employee satisfaction by eliminating manual time and attendance functions – tasks that employees often view as laborious.

Cons of Barcoded Time Tracking

  • Change to the workplace (many organizations in business for years have tweaked their processes and employ workers who have been trained and already know the current way of doing things).
  • It can be costly, with businesses that want to implement barcode equipment and technology having to withstand the “growing pains” of doing so; this includes training employees, installing the equipment, getting printers up and running and the time spent entering codes for labels.

The Easy Solution From Insight Works

As we mentioned in the beginning of this post, our Shop Floor Insight is an add-on for Business Central that has barcode scanning capabilities to track labor time – but it also does so much more. This comprehensive solution is capable of:

  • Eliminating manual time entry with barcode scanning for Production Orders, Jobs, Service Orders and Fixed Assets.
  • Capturing operational data on the shop floor including consumption, output, scrap and quality.
  • Recording non-productive and “rework time” for advanced reporting.
  • Recording time and attendance based on employee shifts with exception reporting.
  • Automatically calculating overtime and shift differentials for integration with payroll systems.
  • Accessing a web browser to enable data entry from mobile devices in the field or on shop floor.

Now, you can drastically reduce time and attendance data entry tasks via a customizable, configurable platform that allows your payroll department to efficiently communicate directly to responsible personnel in the event of time card issues.

To discover how Insight Works can bring this barcoded time tracking magic to your organization, contact us today.

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