Date icon01 October 2020

There was a time when having workers working remotely or in the field meant being unaware of their movements. The only means for a management team to check in would be to contact the worker directly, which was never the best way to foster trust or encourage productivity.

Thankfully, now technology offers another solution. Where staff would swipe through an access control barrier or clock in via a fingerprint or ID card reader at the office to confirm their attendance and start a shift, mobile time and attendance uses geolocation to facilitate the same process. Touchstar’s mobile time and attendance application – GeoConnectMe – does exactly this.

Designed to help organisations manage fieldworkers such as engineers, cleaning staff and maintenance teams, GeoConnectMe can be programmed with the GPS of an agreed working location – such as an offsite building, for example – and stored . If locations are not known, then the user can select a generic term and share their location with the system. Workers can use their iOS or Android smartphones or mobile devices to clock in remotely at the start of each shift, but only once the app has detected them at their set working location.

The GeoConnectMe app enables one-touch clock in across a range of useful statuses, such as ‘clock in’, ‘taking lunch’, ‘travel’ and so on, so it’s easy to track time usage in real time and ensure compliance and employee wellbeing even from afar. 

The latter is a particularly important point, since remote working, especially over prolonged periods of time, can leave some workers feeling isolated. It can help to maintain as much working normality as possible, and the ability to clock in and out remotely ‘as usual’ can play a vital role in helping remote workers to continue to feel part of a wider, valued workforce.    

Why mobile time and attendance? 

Any business that makes use of a time and attendance system within its premises will understand the need to maintain its capabilities even when staff are working remotely.

Integrated with payroll and other HR processes, a time and attendance solution dramatically cuts the amount of time and admin needed to manage a team and their working hours, which may vary across individual employee agreements, contracted hours and rates of pay. Hours can be recorded accurately and logged instantly, for simple and convenient calculation of payroll and overtime.

Any persistent problems with absenteeism or lateness can be digitally highlighted and addressed with the relevant team members, and stored data records provide proof of compliance with employment and workplace legislation for auditing purposes. It’s no wonder managers are keen to keep these processes in place even when staff are working offsite.

Fortunately, through cloud and GPS technology, a mobile time and attendance application like GeoConnectMe enables workers to ‘clock in and out’ for work wherever they’re based.

All the benefits of time and attendance, wherever staff are working

GeoConnectMe works as part of our scalable time and attendance solution, which makes the overall system truly flexible. As well as enabling time management for field and remote workers, there’s also potential for businesses whose workforces are now based at home to streamline their time and attendance processes.

At the time of writing, workers in the UK have once again been asked by the government to work from home where possible, yet many businesses have taken steps to make remote working a permanent part of their operations, even beyond the pandemic. Before the latest guideline update, a YouGov survey found that, of firms whose premises were closed but have since reopened, 77per cent said staff could continue to work from home if they prefer to. GeoConnectMe could offer such organisations the benefits of mobile time and attendance, regardless of whether they decide to stick to remote working permanently, mix remote and on-site working or eventually head back to the office full time. 

Remote and field work will continue to take up a large part of the working landscape, so there’s no better time to ensure your business has the tools it needs to integrate into your operations successfully. Find out more about GeoConnectMe and our time and attendance solutions by getting in touch today. 

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR – LYNDEN JONES

Lynden joined Touchstar ATC (formally Feedback Data) in a sales role for Access Control in 2010.  Prior to joining the company, Lynden held both Production and Account Manager roles, gaining wide technical and commercial experience within the electronics market.  

In 2013 Lynden was promoted to Sales Director and in 2017 he took overall responsibility of the business as Managing Director. As well as running Touchstar ATC, Lynden still remains extremely active in the sales and key account management aspects of the business. When not involved in the business, Lynden is a keen performance car enthusiast.