The Payroll Solutions Blog

Time Theft 101: Limiting Time Theft Though Time Keeping Software

Posted by Greg Laubacher on Thu, May 16, 2013 @ 02:10 PM

time theft, time keeping

Time theft is an often overlooked problem that many businesses face and it is costly.

Time theft is when an employee gets paid for more hours than they worked.

Time theft occurs at many times during the day. The main places time theft occurs is when employees falsify time sheets by changing start time and end time as well as breaks. Tardiness also affects time theft as the employee is not actually working at the time that they are supposed to. This means that you are paying for your employees to be late! Extended breaks and unauthorized overtime are also considerations that must be looked at for time theft. If you give your employees a 30-minute paid lunch and they take a 45-minute break you are losing more money. Buddy clocking is also one of the major ways that time theft occurs. Let's think of this scenario:

Mechanic Martin is supposed to be at work by 8am. It is 8am and he hasn't left home yet. Martin calls fellow employee Doug and explains that he will be late. Doug then finds Martin's timecard and clocks him in to work so Martin doesn't get into trouble. Martin finally shows up at 8:45 and begins working. The problem? You just paid Martin for 45 minutes of work. Lets say that Martin makes $16/hour and he is late once a week: That $12 x 52 weeks a year, that's $624 just for Martin, and he isn't the only one.

Time keeping software can solve this problem. Timekeeping requires the individual to login, and it is all electronic and documented. An employee has many options for timekeeping including; mobile phone login, swipe card login, online login, as well as a variety of biometric login capabilities. If your employee is required to swipe a card to clock in as well as provide his fingerprint, he cannot be paid while still at home.

Time keeping software is affordable, especially considering how much money companies lose due to time theft.

 

How can FlexChecks help? We offer the most up-to-date time keeping software with a variety of options. Check out our website or call us today! 

 

Get A Free 30 Day Timekeeping Trial

www.flexchecks.com

 

Tags: paycard, paycards, automated time and attendance, time and attendance software, timekeeping

Preparing For ObamaCare: Accurate Timekeeping is Critical

Posted by Diane Pelak on Mon, Mar 04, 2013 @ 03:20 PM

Obamacare

By now we’re all familiar with the Affordable Care Act, a.k.a. ObamaCare. ObamaCare poses some potentially serious concerns for employers, who will now shoulder much more responsibility for employee benefits programs. If your company employs at least 50 fulltime workers, the following advice should be considered:

When will the ACA regulations be enforced?

January 1, 2014 is the start date. Large employers that don’t offer employees affordable, minimum essential coverage will face significant penalties. Your company should start preparing for these changes now.

Which employers should take notice?

A business is considered a large employer if it staffs at least 50 fulltime workers.

What happens to employers who ignore ACA guidelines?

Large employers that don’t provide affordable health coverage will be fined. The annual penalty will be $2,000 per fulltime employee in excess of 30 workers. For example, if an employer has 53 fulltime employees and they do not offer essential coverage, the penalty would be $46,000 (23 × $2,000) per year. Not exactly something to sneeze at.

Which employees will qualify?

This is where things get tricky. For ACA compliance, a fulltime employee is an individual who works 130 hours or more per month. Because the IRS recognizes that month-to-month determinations could become burdensome on employers and could be disruptive to employees, they have proposed a “safe harbor” to measure if an employee is “fulltime”. This safe harbor will allow employers to establish a Standard Measurement Period in which they will determine if an employee has worked an average of 130 hours per month, then be allowed to “lock employees out” if they don’t meet the minimum during this period.

Is there an easier way to track qualifying employees?

Yes—with better timekeeping. Now more than ever, your company needs an accurate, reliable clocking system. Web-based timekeeping is a simple and affordable solution to ensure compliance with The Affordable Care Act and to avoid huge fines.

But better timekeeping makes good business sense on its own, too.

How can my company improve its timekeeping system?

Your timekeeping solution should be simple to set up, and offer easy daily management of employee timecards. Look for systems with a variety of data collection options—including fingerprint scan, web, phone, pin/badge swipe, or proximity badge.

Besides meeting ACA guidelines, what are the advantages of improved timekeeping?

  • Reduced labor costs through higher efficiency and more accurately tracked employee hours.
  • Increased productivity by eliminating payment for late arrivals and early departures.
  • Easy reporting for data analysis to help you comply with the ACA provisions.
  • Easily imports to payroll. 
  • Prevention of employee time theft by eliminating “buddy punching.”
  • Easy management of data from any online workstation.
  • Simple hardware set up.

Get A Free 30 Day Timekeeping Trial

Tags: timekeeping, Obamacare

Direct Deposit Saves Money & The Environment

Posted by Diane Pelak on Thu, Dec 20, 2012 @ 11:51 AM

direct depositProviding direct deposit to your employees saves your company money and protects the environment.  With companies closely watching their bottom line, and the effort to reduce carbon footprints on permanent to-do lists, converting to direct deposit makes perfect sense.

Direct Deposit Saves Money

Providing hard copy checks is expensive. It's estimated the cost is on average $4.00 per check.  Bank service charges, postage and delivery all add up to significant and unnecessary costs to your business. 

Direct Deposit Saves Time

With Direct Deposit, payroll reconciliation is minimized to one debit for the entire net pay. There is also no need to reissue lost checks or for employees to spend their work time going to the bank to deposit their check. These time efficiencies should add up to increased productivity for your company. 

Direct Deposit Provides Ancillary Benefits to Your Employees

Most banks will provide a free checking account if you participate in direct deposit. This gives your employees an added employment benefit that is saving both of you money.

Direct Deposit Is Good for the Environment

Environmental costs for paper checks can be very high.  It is estimated that paper checks use over 674 million gallons of fuel and add 3.6 million tons of CO2 to the environment.  Imagine the collective difference we could make if everyone used direct deposit and viewed their pay stub online!

Direct Deposit Lessens Payroll Fraud & Identity Theft

Payroll check fraud and identity theft are growing business, personal and financial issues that can be negatively impacted with Direct Deposit. Advancements in the sophistication of computer technology has aided in the growth of these problems.  Without hard copy checks, it is much more difficult for these crimes to occur.

How Can You Begin Direct Deposit?

It's easier than you think!  Download our guide and you'll be on your way!

  7 steps to implement direct deposit

Tags: paperless payroll, Direct Deposit

Increase Your Business’s Efficiency With Time and Attendance Software

Posted by Diane Pelak on Wed, Sep 12, 2012 @ 02:11 PM

Verifone 330/380If your business is looking for ways to remain profitable and drive revenue time and attendance software could be a solution for you. Many companies don’t realize that they can reduce labor costs significantly by implementing an automated time and attendance software.

Automated time keeping using time and attendance software has been proven to increase business efficiency as well as save money. Businesses who do not implement such technology could be negatively impacting their bottom line and their workplace. Here are some things to consider about manual timekeeping:

Human error accounts for approximately 1 to 8 percent of gross labor costs in time keeping. This can account for $6,240 to $49,920 annually, depending on the complexity of the data totaled.

Time and Attendance Software can:

  • Reduce or eliminate disputes regarding paid or unpaid time. 
  • Allows both employee and employer access to the electronic record of time.
  • Eliminate human error, which can be a very time-consuming and unprofitable problem.
  • Reduce wasted (non-worked) minutes

Did you know that if 15 employees have just 4 extra minutes for which they are paid when they were not actually working, your business may be paying an additional 1,380 minutes, or 24 hours of extra pay per month. At $10.00 per hour average, that’s $240 or $2,880 per year.

While most large companies use automated timekeeping to track employee hours and pay, many small businesses often do not realize how time and attendance software would benefit them.

3 Ways  Timekeeping Can  Save You Money!

 

Tags: automated time and attendance, time and attendance software

The REAL Savings of Paperless Payroll

Posted by Diane Pelak on Sun, Sep 09, 2012 @ 12:30 AM

Paperless Payroll

Providing paperless payroll to your employees saves money...and lots of it. Just ask City of Grand Rapids, Michigan Comptroller, Donijo DeJonge who estimates going paperless will save the City approximately $114,000 per year.  She estimates the costs of buying check stock and printing and delivering checks costs about $4 per payroll check.  And that doesn't include some of the hidden costs to both employers and employees.  
Consider the following additional costs when contemplating providing paperless payroll to your employees:   
  • Payroll check fraud is one of the largest challenges facing businesses and financial institutions today.  Advancing computer technology is increasingly easy for criminals to access and enables them to easily duplicate a paper check with a simple printer.  Blank check stock is easy to obtain and even fonts, like those found on the bottom of paper checks is easily downloadable.  
  • Bank service charges on one extra business account can be as high as $1000 per year.  Because of check fraud, businesses often operate a separate checking account so only payroll related expenses clear.  This limits exposure to just one payroll period when a business transfers the total payroll expense each pay period. 
  • Reconciliation of payroll checks against the bank statement takes time.  With paperless payroll, one debit for all net pay is the only item on the bank statement each payroll.
  • Reissuance of lost checks takes time.  Employee's often misplace or damage checks, requiring paper checks to be reprinted.
  • Postage and delivery of checks is expensive.  With first-class postage now at $0.45 per envelope, a business with just 50 employees can add expense of $1,170 per year in postage alone.  If a business uses a payroll service provider who ships UPS or other ground shipping, the cost of delivery of the payroll package is approximately $520 annually.
  • Decreased productivity can be experienced by business who do not offer paperless payroll when employees are required to leave the business to cash payroll checks.
  • Environmental costs for paper checks can be very high.  It is estimated that paper checks use over 674 million gallons of fuel and add 3.6 million tons of CO2 to the environment.
Employees also incur significant costs when they are not offered paperless payroll, including:  
  • Free Checking:  Most financial institutions offer free checking to customers who participate in direct deposit.  The savings add up quickly when you consider the average monthly fee to maintain an interest bearing checking account is $10.56/month or $126.72 per year.
  • Identity theft:  Payroll checks left in mailboxes can result in the identity theft because paystubs generally include personal information.  The costs associated with identity theft can be be devestating.

What Exactly is Paperless Payroll?  

Paperless payroll is any system that combines the following features and allows employees to be paid directly, without issuing paper checks that need to be printed, deposited or cashed:
  • Direct Deposit:  depositing funds directly to an employee's account via the Automated Clearing House (ACH).  Generally, direct deposit requires a minimum of three steps to process, including:  1.) Sending a computer generated file to a bank or ACH processor; 2.) The receiving bank then sends a file to the Federal Reserve; and 3.) The Federal Reserve sends files to the receiving banks who post debits and credits to employer and employee accounts.    
  • PayCards:  A payroll card that allows an employee to access their paycheck by using a debit card at a point of purchase or withdrawing funds at an ATM.  There is usually a Mastercard or Visa logo on the card which makes the card very versatile.  Funds are deposited to a Paycard in the same manner that direct deposit is processed.  PayCards are generally FREE to employers and can be free to employees depending on how they use the card.
  • Online Paystubs:  A system in which employees can securely sign in to an internet website to view paystubs.    

How Can I Begin Paperless Payroll?

Paperless payroll may be a great solution for your business and your employees.  But, the first step is to determine if your state allows you to mandate direct deposit or electronic payment of payroll.  To find out your state laws, download our State Direct Deposit Law Fact Sheet
Stay Compliant With Our Direct Deposit Laws  Fact Sheet

Tags: paperless payroll, paycard, paycards, payroll savings