Managing Workplace Time and Attendance
Open Options Time and Attendance captures information relating to employee attendance in real time. It has been proved to considerably reduce the administrative burden involved in managing attendance time and absence. With an increase in flexible working employers need to manage the use of resources more carefully than ever whilst conforming to health and safety standards such as Working Time Regulations.
Open Options Time and Attendance ensures employers manage their workforce more effectively by being in control of absence, budgets and resource planning.
- A reduced administration burden
- Data entered once and used to populate other systems – no re-keying of data
- Simplified payroll and employee record administration
- Payroll accuracy
- Effective holiday planning
- Improved absence management
- Control of Flexible Working arrangements
- Conformance to Working Time Regulations
Attendance data is captured automatically through a variety of input devices (such as time clocks, telephony systems, finger print, or iris recognition scanners, Radio Frequency(RFID) tags or web browsers) to suit the needs and cultures of all businesses. Even remote workers can record work start and stop times to enable managers to gain a full and true picture of the whole workforce.
By capturing information automatically, organisations can eliminate the need for duplicate data input. In addition, by integrating with other systems such as HR and Payroll, the data can be captured once and automatically populate these systems to simplify payroll and employee record administration hence reducing the administrative burden and associated costs.
Large employers have to manage large quantities of data relating to each employee and, at the same time, need to have an overall view of the workforce to help in the planning and management of them as a group and individually. Open Options houses and provides this vital personal information including skills, training records and health records for HR professionals and line managers. With biometric time and attendance the finger print scanner is extremely accurate so can be used as methods of access control in areas of the workplace that require authorised entry.
Unauthorised or unexpected absences cause major problems in terms of planning, scheduling and management and in the ability of a company to satisfy productivity and customer service. Open Options has been designed to take the pain out of absence management by quickly identifying authorised and unauthorised absence for each employee either in real-time or historically. According to the CBI, absence rates fall when senior managers are involved in managing absence. Open Options provides the ideal tool to help senior managers understand absence levels and trends at departmental, divisional and individual levels which in turn can be used to enforce policies.
Absence Entitlement Rules
Open Options fully supports multiple calendars so that an organisation can define the year by working periods and allow different divisions or departments to operate on different calendars to match their disparate requirements. For example, a company may operate in several countries where there are different public holidays. Absence entitlement rules can then be set against the calendar for holidays, maternity and paternity leave and other authorised leave. In addition, the system can hold rules for unauthorised absences and allow the automatic flow of processes to help managers pro actively manage issues such as disciplinary procedures.
Authorised absences such as holidays, doctors’ appointments,maternity and paternity leave can be pre-booked into the system. The input screens can be set up to reflect each organisation’s absence definitions for quick and simple processing. Absences can be booked for time slots and periods as defined by your own rules. When booking each period of absence, the system will compare against the entitlements and either accept the request or warn that it has exceeded them if appropriate.
Absence management is an issue for all organisations and in most it can prove to be administratively burdensome. Open Options has been designed to eliminate unnecessary administration. As the data is captured automatically, any unauthorised absences will be flagged as exceptions on the system screens for management intervention.
All absence exceptions can then be viewed and the correct absence code allocated and processed. The information then can be passed through to the HR, payroll and other systems to provide a full record of each individual’s absence history and also streamline administration processes.
This simple process ensures accurate information for effective management of absence so that processes, procedures and specific actions can be taken to reduce the absence levels.
According to the CBI report 20% of organisations are still not recording the reason for absence and so therefore they can’t identify and manage any underlying problems. Open Options allows managers to capture the reasons for absences easily so that potential issues can be monitored.
Return to Work Interviews
The CBI, in their annual absence and labour turnover survey, identifies return to work interviews as the most effective way of reducing unauthorised absence. Open Options allows rules to be applied that will automatically notify line managers via E-mail the moment an employee returns to work following a period of absence. The return to work interview can then be scheduled.
The Bradford Factor
One popular measure of absence is the Bradford Factor,which uses an algorithm based on the Number of Incidences and the Duration of each incidence to compute an absence score for each employee. This Bradford score can also be used to invoke disciplinary procedures if absence exceeds a defined level.
Open Options allows organisations to manage disciplinary procedures based on definable work rules and processes and the procedures may define an escalation process if the absence violations persist.
For example, rules can be set for periods of lateness;once an individual exceeds the acceptable number (set by each organisation based on their own work rules) the system will invoke disciplinary procedures notifying the relative parties via E-mail.
The system can also be set to de-escalate disciplinary procedures if no offences have been recorded within a subsequent time period.
The system will also allow managers to record other disciplinary offences, such as speeding on site or smoking where it is banned. These details are held on the individual’s record and can be actioned automatically in the same way as illustrated above.
With an increase in the requirement for flexible working and the government encouraging family friendly working policies,there is a need for organisations to offer more varied work arrangements. These can take many forms, part-time working, job shares, flexi-time and home working for example.
Legislation will now allow parents with children to make a request for flexible working and suggest how it will work in their organisation. With this added flexibility there will be an increased requirement for managers to have tools to help plan and manage their teams.
Open Options Time and Attendance fully supports various types of flexible work arrangements as it allows you to define the work rules appropriate to your organisation. With the information available at your fingertips, you will be able to plan and manage your people and other business processes more effectively and drive efficiencies and costs savings.
Flexi-time enables employees to attend work at times that suit their personal circumstances whilst ensuring company commitments are met.
Within Open Options, all people eligible to work on a flexi-time basis are linked to an organisation definable Flexi Scheme that indicates the rules controlling the operation of flexi-time. Open Options maintains a balance of all hours worked and therefore credited to the scheme.
This will then be automatically cross matched against the rules to provide an immediate picture for individuals and managers of the hours actually worked compared to the hours each person has contracted to work. This information is then available either as a report or can be viewed by each individual via their web browser.
Annualised hours schemes allow employers to offer additional flexibility to match the attendance of employees against variable workloads. Many organisations have seasonal fluctuations in demand and production requirements and need resources to match.
Open Options supports these schemes by automatically calculating the difference between the hours scheduled and the annualised contract hours and hold it as Reserve Hours which are then compared to the actual attendance of each employee. Where changes are made to the staff schedules, the reserve hours will be altered by Open Options automatically.
Health and Safety
Open Options fully supports all aspects of the Working Time Regulations and other legislative frameworks in accordance with Health & Safety. It supports Working Time Limit, In Work Breaks, and Rest Periods. Agreements can be set up at three levels; Statutory, Collective and Employee with each individual being linked to a specific agreement.
Overtime and Payments
As Open Options Time and Attendance captures actual worked time and compares it to an expected work pattern the system easily identifies people that have worked overtime. User defined rules can be applied to the system that will automatically calculate and authorise overtime payments if appropriate.
Where overtime is unexpected, employees will be flagged on the system ready for authorisation. Payments will only be made once the overtime has been approved. By integrating into payroll system this whole process can be seamlessly operated reducing the need for duplicated data entry, eliminating errors and fraudulent claims. Built in control procedures also enable future overtime to be costed and capped.
Enquiries and Reports
Enquiries can be run for a large variety of data held within the system either at an employee or management level. Predefined reports are also available for all standard functions and additional reporting functionality can be provided by utilising third party report writing tools such as Seagate® Crystal Reports and Cognos® Impromptu.
Open Options is based on a true client/server architecture and the database resides in a single database sitting on a central file server. Open Options is fully ODBC compliant and runs on a variety of database management systems including Microsoft® SQL Server and Oracle®.