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Healthcare: Montgomery Hospital

Biometric system eliminates buddy punching, enhances accountability and productivity

“The biometric system has eliminated overtime in departments where groups of people would cover for each other.” - Janet Tharp, Payroll Manager, Montgomery General Hospital


Over 350 employees at Montgomery General Hospital in West Virginia are using Schlage biometric HandPunch readers to clock in and out for their shifts, enabling the hospital to control overtime costs and eliminate the practice of buddy punching, in which one employee clocks in or out for another.

Business need

Using the hospital’s previous card system, some employees would photocopy their badges, laminate them and give them to fellow employees who could swipe them in and out on the time clock, a practice called “buddy punching.” One department of six people had one person who swiped everyone in and out.


It was very important that the system be very easy to use. For instance, Montgomery General Hospital needs to maximize the time and use of their RNs who go from one department to the other. Other systems had many more steps to take to record the transfer. Schlage Biometrics’ HandReaders had just one additional step to change the department. RNs simply enter in their function, job code and department.


Montgomery General Hospital uses seven of the biometric HandReaders, which are located on each floor of the hospital, the nursing home (a long-term care facility) and the physician’s group. Commercial Technology Group implemented the hospital’s time and attendance solution. The HandPunch terminals interface with Genesis Pro time and attendance software from Time America.


The hospital has saved thousands of dollars as a result of using biometric technology since employees can no longer practice fraudulent payroll procedures.

The HandPunch calculates pay differentials through the function keys. For example, nursing or Baylor pay is different on weekends and this is accounted for by the system. “The system has cut costs by increasing productivity,” Tharp explains.

“If an employee is gone an extra hour for lunch, they’re not getting much done. Because of this, they would require overtime. The biometric system has eliminated overtime in departments where groups of people would cover for each other. They are now doing the job they are supposed to do in the area they are in, cutting out unnecessary overtime.”

Montgomery General Hospital (PDF DOWNLOAD)