Time-Tracking Woes from Accounting: Problems and Solutions
Accounting isn’t the most glamorous part of running a construction business. Of course, it has to be done, and it has to be done well. Cue the frustration and the endless hours spent crunching numbers.
To make things even worse, most people who are working the accounting end of construction companies are going to run into any number of common problems when it comes to time-tracking. Because, let’s face it, tracking work hours is a thankless task.
Let’s take a look at a few stories of people working in accounting, their challenges when it came to working with time reports and what it took for them to overcome some of the most common issues with tracking work hours on job sites.
When Time Tracking Wastes Time
Tracking employee hours is essential, right? You need to know what workers are doing while they’re on the job site at any given time and you want that information to be as accurate as possible. That’s a no-brainer.
But if you’re handing out paper time cards and expecting guys to keep them filled out throughout the day and then expect to take all that information and slap it onto some overly complicated spreadsheet, all you’re really doing is wasting your time.
I’ve been there, done that. I’ve spent hours working on time cards, labor costs and payroll only to stop myself and think, “What am I doing? There’s got to be a better way.”
Well, there is. With a mobile time tracking app like busybusy, you can automate simple tasks like gathering data for payroll and collecting information about the amount of time that’s being spent on various tasks around job sites. This can be done without having to manually input data every single time because let’s face it, you’ve got better things to do.
Try as we might, we can’t all be perfect. That includes our efforts in keeping up with construction time clocks. Guys clock in, they clock out, they go on break, they come back from break, and somewhere in all that mess, people start making mistakes.
They forget to punch out when traveling from one job site to another, or they can’t remember what time they got to work so they figure, “What the hell, I’ll just guess close.” Which normally ends in rounding up, not because the employee is intentionally stealing time, it’s more because he just doesn’t want to guess wrong and screw himself out of a paycheck. The result is the same though and that result is you paying extra dollars because time wasn’t tracked well. And sure, it may just be a few minutes you lose here and there, but I’ve seen this firsthand–those minutes add up to some major losses once you take those extra minutes each day and times it by the amount of guys you have and the wages you are paying.
With a time card app like busybusy as the solution, you make clocking in and clocking out a lot easier, the app has location-based reminders for when your employees get to the job site so they don’t forget to clock in/out and GPS timestamps to ensure the integrity of the information. Now you can be sure your time-tracking is a lot more accurate. You still won’t achieve perfection, but it might feel like it after the pain and financial losses you’ve experienced in the past. You’ll efficiently cut out a lot of the errors that come with using paper time cards and other outdated timekeeping methods.
Don’t Make Time-Tracking a Guessing Game
We mentioned that guessing equals time rounding earlier and with most employees it’s not meant to be malicious or dishonest, however one of the biggest problems on construction sites is when employees just fill in their timecards at the end of the day. End of day time cards being filled out is how most companies operate, some intentional and some because that’s just when the guys remember. Even worse is the common approach of hurry and fill out the time card at the end of the week, even when management has asked for it to be done differently. Trust me, it happens, and when it does, it becomes a headache for everyone involved.
You lose money, you lose trust in your employees, your employees lose trust in the office if someone confronts them and nobody wins. And it gets even worse. Overtime hours being reported and no way to confirm it. What happens in that kind of situation? If you don’t have some sort of data to back it up, in a lot of cases you’re up the creek. Never mind what happens if a worker decides to start a dispute over unpaid hours after you’ve already paid him. If only you had technology that could become the ultimate conflict resolution!
The point of all this is you need something to help you keep better track of what your workers are doing while they’re on the job, when they got there, took breaks and left. That’s where a product like busybusy can save you. busybusy is clean, simple and employees will actually use it because it’s easy and it has the ability to give you real insight into what’s happening, even across multiple job sites. A customer last week said it best when she sent this simple email:
SUBJ: busybusy is awesome
It’s easy to use, the guys like it and the GPS keeps people honest and builds trust for everyone.
Thanks busybusy team!
What Can busybusy Actually Do?
Now, let’s get down to business. busybusy can help eliminate some of your accounting and time-tracking woes. One of the things you should know about busybusy is it allows you to receive productivity data digitally, taking the human error out of the time-tracking process.
You can track labor, gather time cards and even have your employees sign their time cards right from their mobile device. One of the great advantages of this? I’ve found making things convenient for your workers helps get them on board and actually cuts down on a lot of that human error we were talking about.
Additionally, location-based reminders and time based reminders make sure your guys are actually clocking in and out. busybusy’s goal was to make it easy for employees to track time accurately. And after a week or two, you’ll be surprised how many workers would NEVER go back to paper. Employees like feeling productive and good technology definitely helps. In fact, multiple busybusy clients have even referenced that they’ve retained employees longer and gotten more hiring referrals after implementing busybusy at their company. The owners have all said similar things, that their people appreciate knowing they work for a company that’s staying on the cutting edge of technology.
If you want to learn how busybusy time-tracking software can take the terror out of tracking time for your construction business, contact us today. You can also click HERE to schedule a quick 20 min appt to have a discussion to see how straightforward and easy the app is to use.