Is Your Employee Timekeeping System Costing You Too Much?

February 25, 2019

As any savvy small business owner knows, there are two things that a company should always aim to save: time and money. More often than not, the way in which these two resources are used can make or break a company.

Well-managed employee time can mean that your employees are spending more time completing the daily operations that increase profitability and contribute to your business’ growth. While your timekeeping system may efficiently organize some aspects of your business, is it costing you more than it’s worth? Here are a few things to consider.


Using a source outside of your business for time management may seem like one more extraneous expense among many other business expenditures. What you may not realize is that an inefficient or outdated timekeeping system is often more costly than adopting a new one.

As previously mentioned, paper timesheets may be tempting due to their simplicity and availability, but they may also be a breeding ground for inaccuracy.

At best, paper time cards present a lot of room for simple mistakes to be made. At worst, they can leave businesses vulnerable to dishonest employees (according to one survey, upwards of 80 percent of employees admit to “time fraud”). According to Harvard Business Review, improper time tracking can cost the U.S. economy billions of dollars per day in revenue and millions of hours of otherwise profitable time.  

Beyond time lost, imprecise time tracking could also result in a costly legal battle.

Businesses and legislation are constantly evolving and it can be difficult for a small company’s payroll professional to keep up with the mercurial nature of the business world. If your timekeeping system is not able to quickly adapt to any changes in an employee’s position or with new laws, small mistakes could negatively impact individual employees’ pay, resulting in expensive lawsuits and frustrating distribution of backpay.   

On another level, poorly monitored employee time can also result in costly inefficiency. If the ways in which employees spend their time on the clock is not sufficiently measured, a sense of accountability can be lost between employer and employee.

The last thing any small business owner needs is to waste time, so it is paramount that work hours are properly spent completing the business’ necessary daily operations rather than on unrelated tasks that cost you time and money.


At its simplest, an employee timekeeping system is meant to track when your employees clock in and when they clock out. In this case, even a paper timecard could suffice. At this level of measurement, the system is fairly simple to operate and monitor, but your company may not be reaping all possible benefits from the timekeeping system.

Some timekeeping systems offer a variety of other metrics by which you can observe your company’s daily operations. For example, through Commonwealth Payroll & HR’s employee time tracking software iSolved, employers can certainly monitor basic information (such as when employees clock in and out), but the software can also provide a means of managing the more complicated aspects of time management: project-based and travel time, for example. This data is less clear-cut and more susceptible to human error without the support of an appropriate timekeeping system.

iSolved is a time and attendance tracking system that can also account for individual pay differences, holiday pay, and overtime, while also collecting significant data on time use that your business can use to monitor efficiency.

How to Decide

Ultimately, the decision of whether or not to outsource your employee time tracking system depends on the level of growth you seek for your business.

Paper time cards offer simplicity, but they are also quite limiting in the number of metrics an employer can observe regarding their company’s daily operations.

Multifaceted time management systems like iSolved may appear more involved and complex than their analog counterparts, but the expert staff at Commonwealth Payroll & HR are readily available to help your business navigate a range of options tailored for your specific needs. Your new time management system can be as simple or as developed as you choose.
To ensure that your business gets the most from your employee timekeeping system without risking the costs of inefficiency, contact the human resource experts at Commonwealth Payroll & HR today at (978) 599-1500.

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