Archive for January, 2014

What software can I connect to a Handpunch employee time clock

I get asked this question several times every year, either the customer has just purchased a company or building that had an existing Handpunch employee time clock or they just purchased a Handpunch employee time clock.

Last year I received a call from one company who had just purchased 14 hand punch employee time clock’s from an auction. Each time the question is the same asking if we can assist with software that will work with the hand punch hardware. Over the past 10 years I have assisted many companies with hand punch employee time clock’s across Australia, New Zealand and Fiji (Bula to all my Fiji friends)  over the past 3 to 4 years technology is changing and hand punch employee time clock’s are quickly becoming ancient hardware for employee time collection.

While we have software that works with hand punch employee time clock’s the hardware is becoming dated and today there are better options. One of the biggest issues with hand punch employee time clock’s is there is only one supplier in the world, this item is one of many tens of thousands in the company’s product line catalogue. The company’s focus is just not on employee time and attendance.

Why do people choose hand punch employee time clock’s? The main reason that companies choose hand punch employee time clock’s is to stop time theft by stopping employees from clocking in and out each other. One of the more popular methods over the past 10 years has been biometric or fingerprint technology. We have provided thousands of employee time clock’s over the past 10 years and understand the many issues associated with the implementation of employee time clock’s, connection to the network, IP address, the list goes on. If you have an IT person in your business many of these issues are not issues at all. If you do not have an IT person in your business today I would recommend not getting hardware employee time clock’s ( I did not think I would ever say that)

So back to the original question what software can I connect to a hand punch employee time clock, this week I told another customer that while we can provide software to work with the hand punch employee time clock I recommend that before they purchase any software you should book in for a 30 minute demonstration of our most popular time and attendance software that includes rostering.

Book in a time and attendance rostering demonstration







I cant beleive my hairdresser with 28 salons is using manual time sheets

Posted on: January 31, 2014 | Categories: rostering scheduling StaffRosters Blog

Last week was the last week before school goes back, Jacob my youngest who is 9 had his hair looking like Jeff Thompson one of our famous cricketers. Thommo was well known in his day for his shaggy hair. I was also due for a trim so off we went to our local hairdresser.

My hair is significantly shorter than Jacob’s so the young apprentice who cut my hair cleaned up while I sat down and waited for Jacob. We were the only people in the salon at the time getting our hair cut. The salon had 6 workers at the time, it looked like one apprentice, a manager and the remaining four could have been fully qualified hairdressers.

While waiting for Jacob I observed the apprentice grab a piece of paper and started walking over to the 4 girls in the back corner having a chat waiting for the next customer. I learned later the piece of paper was a weekly time sheet for the salon. It looked like they were filling in for the final day of the pay week as the sheet already had information.

About this time I decided to go to the post office as I had some mail to do, I have been using the same local post office for more than 10 years. I lined up at the post office as it is always very busy. Yong who runs the post office is as efficient entrepreneur as you will ever see. He has an incredible memory and always spends time with his regular customers letting them know he cares they frequent his shop often.

I was called over to Yong to complete my mail and as quick as I was being served by Yong another customer to my right was being served by Chris. Chris has worked for Yong for as long as I can remember, when Chris does not work Yong’s wife comes in to work. When I took a closer look the person to my right was the apprentice  hairdresser who had just cut my hair. I noticed she was handing over a weekly time sheet to be faxed. I assumed at this point it was going to a head office to be processed for payroll.

I asked Yong while being served how much does it cost to fax 1 page and he replied $2.00 or $2.50 I could not quite hear at the time.  I went back to the hairdressers to get Jacob and they were still finishing his hair, getting it just right so he was happy with the length he kept and mum would be happy with the length that he goes back to school with to start year 4.

I had a couple of minutes so opened my iPad and googled the name of the hairdressing salon, I found the company website quickly which was very modern, then I read on the front page of the salons website the company has 28 salons now. I did not know the small salon in my local shopping center was part of a 28 store company.

This got me thinking of course about the time sheet. I have been involved in employee time and attendance for more than 15 years, we have provided solutions over the years to many types of businesses, some that you would not even think would need to have employees clocking in and out. If my hairdresser has 28 locations and each location has on average over a month 10 employees and managers per week we are now talking about 280 employees and 28 time sheets, one for each store.

Where ever the time sheet got faxed to, back to head office where administration is completed we will assume, I am sure a payroll person will be sitting in their office ready to process these 28 time sheets manually every week.

What is wrong with this story I ask myself….

  • Employees filling out manual time sheets can easily put down incorrect times
  • Managers who want to be friends with employees can easily approve employees coming in late by changing a start time of 9:15 back to 9:00am
  • Managers at each store will be manually managing rosters for the staff week in week out
  • Head office has no visibility, Head office can only wait for time sheets to be faxed through to see what is happening out in the stores.
  • 28 stores sending 28 faxes is costing at least 56 dollars every week.

What if you could implement an electronic rostering solution across all 28 stores?
What if the cost of the faxing alone equaled 20% of the cost of an electronic system?

  • Employees could only clock in and out electronically, no more manual time sheet changes
  • Managers can roster staff electronically, workers could easily be shared across multiple locations without the need for multiple phone calls
  • Head office could have live and instant visibility on employees arriving at every one of the 28 locations from their computer or mobile phone
  • Payroll could receive electronic data that can flow directly into payroll

Would you stay with a manual time sheet system today or consider these advantages in your business?

Read more about how you can make your payroll more efficient and reduce costs or book in a demonstration



Benefits of Staff Rosters

Posted on: January 28, 2014 | Categories: rostering scheduling StaffRosters Blog

As any business will know, a staff roster is essential to the running operations of your business, and if the roster does not run efficiently, many disastrous problems can occur. Staff may fail to turn up to their shifts or may not be aware of their hours, and your company can suffer greatly. Effective, simple to use and most of all, cost-effective, the benefits of online rostering is far-reaching for any Australian business.

An electronic roster to make your business operations run smoothly

Using a roster template benefits an organisation in many ways, such as:

  • Cost savings: Better scheduling can reduce overheads associated with not assigning more employees than are required at any time, and avoid staff being overworked by not receiving enough rest between shifts or bad shift combinations. Furthermore, filling unforeseen gaps in schedules by relying on expensive, short notice staff will be removed.
  • Reductions in absenteeism and unpunctuality: Staff arriving late or not at all is sometimes due to lack of efficient rosters in place. Better rostering and providing workers with their requested shifts will ensure they arrive on time – something online rostering can help with.
  • Personal preferences: By providing interactive rosters, staff will be more satisfied when they are able to better plan and use their leisure time. From this, higher levels of productivity and lower staff turnover will occur, resulting in a positive for your business.

The benefits of a roster template from Staff Rosters will provide you with an efficient and simple to use online roster that will satisfy staff and managers, and increase the profitability of your business.

Clever rostering with SMS and email communication with employees

Posted on: January 19, 2014 | Categories: rostering scheduling StaffRosters Blog

Rostering programs with SMS capability mostly consists of create the roster and publish all the rosters out to employees via SMS. This is where most rostering programs stop today, very clever programs will allow the employee or contractor to reply back and accept the shift via SMS or e-mail giving visibility to the person rostering who is accepting and not accepting shifts.

With live visibility of employees accepting and not accepting scheduled shifts sent out by email or SMS operators can see how quickly shifts are being filled, but what happens when an employee or contractor changes their mind after accepting a shift, how does this get communicated back to the company scheduler. What is required in this situation is the ability for the employee or contractor to change their mind and communicate this change of mind back to the database.

The cleverest of rostering systems today now include apps that can be downloaded to employees smart phone. Employees from their own smart phone can view their roster, see approved time sheets, apply for time off or leave.


The best rostering apps now include management tools for managers in the palm of your hand. Anyone who rosters will know how much work is involved when staff call in sick and you must replace them to ensure the production line continues or to keep the patrons at the hotel happy with short lines when ordering drinks. I had my turn at rostering when working for Weston Bakes Foods many years ago, we always needed an exact amount of people to get all the orders out each morning, we were dealing with fresh cakes that just had to go out on the day they were made to preserve shelf life.

I would have 1 or 2 every night not show up out of a group of about 40 employees, some nights I would be out on the factory floor, get the message of a person calling in sick, then going back to my office to start calling phone numbers of casuals to find a replacement, this could take 5 minutes it could take 35 minutes.

Move forward to today, technology has changed, back then iPhones did not even exist. Today a manager can have all the employee information including schedules in the palm of their hand, you can get the message anywhere that a staff member needs replacing and from your smart phone in minutes you can organise the replacement and then get on with your work.

Wouldn’t it be nice if when an employee or contractor changed their mind after accepting a shift that they could communicate this electronically back to the dataset and in turn the dataset automatically went through the next best available employee or contractor with the correct criteria to fill the vacant shifts, sending out a fresh e-mail or SMS to the next best available employee or contractor…….. wouldn’t this save you some time

The future has all sorts of nice tools coming our way, if you are rostering from a spreadsheet, you should look at this. Rostering for the future

Does Weather affect your rostering or scheduling of employees?

Posted on: January 12, 2014 | Categories: rostering scheduling StaffRosters Blog

Does Weather affect your rostering or scheduling of employees?

Talking to hundreds of customers every month over the past few years with all sorts of adverse weather conditions impacting day to day sales I thought it was time to ask “Does Weather affect your rostering or scheduling of employees?”

I remember back when I first started working as a 14-15 year old in my fathers welding business, Speed was dad’s nickname but he was everything but fast, he built sheds and factories for people in the bush with orchards. He also spent a lot of time building silos for flour mills right across the central west of NSW. This was 30 years ago when I got my first experiences of how weather can impact a business. It was simple, if it rained and the job was outdoors then the work was called off for the day.

Often we experienced weather conditions that were to hot, welding back in those days was stick welding only, mig welding did not exist, we would be dressed in heavy blue one piece overalls that may well have been the first ever onesie.

Me with Dad

Hot weather stopped us welding when it went over 40 degrees Celsius or 104 Fahrenheit, but i bet ice cream shops, swimming pools, companies selling air conditioners, companies servicing air conditioners went gangbusters.

 Does Weather affect your rostering or scheduling of employees? maybe it is time to get a rostering or scheduling solution that understands weather impacts the rostering and scheduling of employees in your business

Read more about a rostering or scheduling solution that understands how weather affects the management of employees in your business

Cold Weather or worse snow like the USA is experiencing in early 2014 can cripple businesses even the businesses that are designed to make money while it is cold. the cold snap in USA in January 2014 has stopped entire towns from moving for days, thousands of flights have been impacted, hundreds of thousands of flying customers have been impacted.

Every one of the situations happening in USA especially the Midwestern United States will be impacting hundreds maybe even thousands of businesses including the rostering and scheduling of hundreds of thousands of employees.

One place hot pies and hot dogs will sell well in this cold snap will be when the Green Bay Packers meet the San Francisco 49ers as fans of the NFL’s Green Bay Packers vowed to brave the weather to see a playoff matchup that could stand as one of the coldest ever games in league history. In Green Bay, Wisconsin, football fan Jacquie Tucker Braun, 44, was undaunted by a forecast for temperatures below 0 F (-18 C) when the Packers match up with the San Francisco 49ers.

Read more about a rostering or scheduling solution that understands how weather affects the management of employees in your business


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