By Kimberly D. Gray, Senior HR Services Partner

Recent studies conducted by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners found that occupational fraud resulted in organizational losses totaling tens of thousands of dollars. These acts of fraud include embezzlement but also include employee timesheet fraud, which is a more pervasive problem. Employers should not just allow these lost payroll costs to continue. Taking a few simple steps to prevent time theft will help to save on those loses.

When businesses partner with a Professional Employer Organization, such as Resourcing Edge (RE), keeping accurate track of time and attendance gets easier. Resourcing Edge offers a web-based time and attendance software to make tracking easy and user-friendly. In addition, RE’s solution offers robust scheduling, time and labor management, and workforce analytics. It provides peace of mind that timesheet fraud is a thing of the past.

Beyond having a state-of-the-art time and attendance system, there are actions that management can take to lessen the chance that workers are cheating the system.

Communicate About Time Theft

Lack of communication between employees and management about time theft is one of the biggest barriers to taking back control over abuse of time. While employees may realize that spending twenty minutes at the end of the day on Facebook before clocking out or taking an extra fifteen minutes at lunch if frowned upon, they may not realize they are stealing time from the company. Managers should make a point to discuss how time theft affects the business.

Remind Employees of Time Keeping Policies

Employees should be reminded regularly during meetings about company attendance and timekeeping policies to create an open dialogue about time abuse in the workplace. Employees can be a great source of new ways to curb abuse, allowing them to feel like they are a part of the solution. By keeping policies at the forefront of employees’ minds, employers can ensure that the message is clear and consistent.

Set Clear Expectations

Clarity is key when it comes to theft in the workplace, this includes time. Employees should know the boundaries of taking long lunches, staying late to add a few extra minutes to their time at the end of the day, buddy punching or clocking in early before actually starting their work day. Implementing a biometric time and attendance system ensures that the proper employees are reporting to work and their time cards cannot be forged, eliminating “buddy punching.” The HR professionals at Resourcing Edge can assist with the nuances of implementing a biometric time keeping system including assisting with potential accommodations based on religious beliefs or physical limitations.

Review Company’s Overtime Rules

Overtime is another form of time clock abuse. Non-exempt employees working overtime without permission or falsifying timesheets to reflect overtime hours that were not actually worked can be another expensive payroll loss to a business. Reviewing your policy periodically to ensure you cover any changes in patterns you may see develop is an effective way to reducing overtime abuse.

Clearly communicating company policies surrounding time card use and abuse will substantially reduce payroll costs. If your employees know the rules, they are more likely to follow them. This will lead to higher profits for the company and increased employee productivity.

Resourcing Edge offers cost-effective web-based software and time clocks for timekeeping solutions. We can tailor time and attendance systems to meet the needs of almost any industry. Our solution is easy to use, and has customized and personalized setup, geo fencing, and added security features.

Besides having an opportunity to use a top-notch time and attendance system, when you work with Resourcing Edge, our HR professionals can assist in writing a thorough and compliant time reporting policy that will help you manage employee time. Contact us if you are interested in learning more about the Time and Attendance software available through Resourcing Edge.

Kimberly D. Gray is a Senior HR Services Partner at Resourcing Edge, who has 25 years of experience in employee relations, training, and compliance.

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