Geo-fencing technology has been all the rage these days. Also known as Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology, this breakthrough creates a virtual geographic boundary, enabling the software to track when a mobile device enters or leaves a "Geo-fence.’ A geofence is a virtual perimeter for a real-world geographic area set by the owner or admin of the technology.
Quite a few companies in a variety of industries (job sites and service locations) have started to employ the use of this technology for tracking employee time and production. Geo-fencing is particularly helpful for businesses with remote employees as they can keep track of everyone, whether they are currently off-site or going between multiple job sites.
Geofencing can seem complicated, but thanks to current technology, location tracking is now easier than ever. Employers can turn to software or applications offering geofencing technology.
Activating the technology and setting a ‘Geo-fence’ is easy. An employee installs the GPS app on their mobile device, and they are set up! When they clock in or out, the technology recognizes whether they are within the borders of their workplace and lets them know. Geofencing can be used to remind employees to clock in or out of work when they arrive or leave the geofenced area or alert employers when the punches happen out of bounds.
Today, businesses are fortunate enough to have technology that can streamline the employee time sheet process at their disposal. However, the use of this robust technology can take a little bit of time to get use too. Both employers and employees need to be acquainted with the use of this technology. Geofencing provides many benefits when carefully implemented. To make the most of your GPS tracking app, you need to be prepared.
Below are five essential geo-fencing factors to consider for successful mobile timekeeping. Keep reading to learn more!
1. Setting Formal Policies in Place
The first thing to do when launching an employee tracking system is to set formal timekeeping policies in place. These policies are essential since employees have to deal with two things: (1) ensure proper employee attendance and (2) implementing the use of the app. Employees can’t successfully use the software unless they have clear expectations.
Timekeeping policies will vary from business to business and even sometimes person to person. However, there are a few standard things to think about as you put the rules in place. Employees should know:
- How to punch in or out
- Where to see the schedule
- When to clock out for breaks and meals
- How to trade a shift
- How to proceed when late or over-break
- What to do when one is absent
2. Conducting Training in Using Geo-fencing for Timekeeping
It isn’t smart to assume that employees will immediately know how to use the employee tracking app you’ve chosen. As with any technology, some training is required for seamless integration. Think about training and hold an orientation about geo-fencing technology. You should include practical training on how to use the GPS app or software. Your training should apply to both the employers or admin and the employees themselves.
Employers, administrators, and supervisors need to know the following:
- How to set a geo-fence
- How to input employee scheduling
- How to track employee attendance and location
- How to properly tag employee status
- How to approve requests
Employee tracking training includes:
- How to install the GPS app or software on mobile devices
- How to clock in and clock out
- How to view schedules and track attendance
- How to inform and tag
- How to request for leave
3. Compliance with Workplace Laws
Although the increasing popularity of employee tracking apps means that they are starting to become accepted in most jurisdictions, it’s best to acquaint yourself with the laws in your state. With location-based tracking software, there are specific legal implications. As much as possible, ensure that your business complies with existing laws and legalities concerning the use of GPS time tracking app in the workplace. Here are some standard legal concerns to be wary of:
- Getting consent from employees for tracking attendance
- Tracking workers on public or private property
- Providing personal or company-provided mobile devices
- Tracking employees attendance outside of regular working hours
- Keeping employee information confidential
- Restricting access to geofencing technology
4. Addressing Employee Misconceptions
It isn’t uncommon for employees to have their doubts and concerns about GPS tracking technology. During training, talk to your employees about the benefits of geofencing technology. Explain how it can be beneficial to them individually as well as to the company as a whole. Make sure that you touch on the following topics:
- Safe arrival on the job site
- Tracking work time for payroll accuracy
- Knowing that employees are at the correct work location
- Recognition of punctuality and overtime so no miss clock punches
- Staff allocation for client billing
- Prevention of time theft
When you clearly explain the benefits of the software, employees will be more comfortable with using it. Geofencing is still a relatively new technology, and as with any new technology, there is often mistrusted. As it becomes more accepted, the mistrusted will dissipate.
5. Other Possible Geofencing Concerns
There are other possible concerns that you may want to touch on when it comes to the use of geofencing technology. Below are a few:
- Some employees may have concerns about the security of geo-fencing. It helps to know that such technology usually requires smartphone users to grant permission for location services.
- Some employees may question the accuracy of the employee attendance tracking app. Assure your employees that geofencing is one of the best technological innovations to transform the modern workplace. Software and app developers ensure they will be working correctly. That is where you can stress the importance of training and the proper use of technology.
- Some employees may be concerned about system glitches or loss of data. It’s smart to have backup data, so all data is available when needed.
Ultimately, the advancement of Geo-fencing technology has made it easy for businesses to create a more efficient workforce. Geofencing is just one of the many features of time attendance tracking and location tracking software. It is crucial to know where your crews are. Service companies schedule calls all over town or many job sites, so these employees are always moving.
There are other benefits that a business can get out of this, such as robust employee time tracking, efficient production timelines, and integration with payroll systems like QuickBooks. For this technology and your business to be successful, it helps to integrate a modern application with your work process. Doing so can make a great deal of difference in payroll accuracy, productivity, profit, and more! Paper time cards or excel timesheets don’t do this.