If you’re looking for a time and attendance software, this post is here to help you make an informed decision which software you can choose.
The industry is led by Kronos and Replicon, with Time Doctor (that’s us) offering a third option for you to consider. We have done a thorough job of describing each of these options for you so you can make an informed decision when you choose your time and attendance software. We have also laid out a comparison of each tool’s feature set in the table at the end of the article.
The first tool we’re going to discuss is Kronos. Founded in 1977 by two MIT grads, this company began by inventing the very first microprocessor-powered time clock, and has evolved into one of the leading players in human capital management. Pricing can be difficult to tack down, so you’ll need to reach out to them directly for a quote. Depending on your company’s size, goals and needs, be prepared to invest anywhere from $5,000 to $1,000,000. I know that’s quite a spread, but with these prices comes an intense support network, as well as a multitude of specialized products.
Lets start off with the aesthetics. Because you’re going to view this software throughout the day, it’s important you like it.
You can see that the layout is very professional, clean, and bright. You can easily add and track employees. Below is a clear view of your scheduler, which allows you to view the work progress of your team throughout the day.
As you can see, Kronos emphasizes a classic and intuitive approach to personnel management.
One of the greatest benefits to choosing Kronos is their multitude of products that span the workforce management spectrum. They provide software that will handle hiring, scheduling, labor analytics along with their time and attendance tool.
Their sales team will help you choose a product, or a bundle of products, that will help move your organization forward. They also have a mobile application which allows you and your employees to track and monitor progress when out of the office and on the road. Production reporting happens real time and your HR professional can preset company holidays and events to facilitate scheduling. Finally, Kronos works seamlessly with your existing payroll service. For small businesses, this is a huge help. It could save valuable man hours which otherwise could be used for product development.
There are a few downsides, however. Kronos is a Microsoft based program. For you Mac lovers out there, this might be a problem. This also means that browser support would only come through Internet Explorer. These would be things to consider if you’re operating a tech company which favors different platforms.
There is no screenshot tracking feature, meaning you can’t actually verify the productivity of your employees. While this might not be an issue for companies with deep pockets, those of us who are forced to count every penny to pay the bills may want to see exactly how their employees are spending their time.
The biggest downside I found was the lack of a manual time entry system, or any offline operations. Kronos doesn’t allow an employee to go back and actively manage their time if the system was not operating while they were working. This could be a problem with some companies that value that flexibility.
Replicon is the second product that we will review today. This is another international company that has taken the lead in employee management, bridging traditional time tracking, and cloud based services. It’s important to be comfortable with their cloud based approach, as there is no software that you’ll download, and you’ll be totally untethered. Priced at $9 a month per user, this might be the goldilocks service you’re looking for.
Voted as one of the best places to work in Canada in 2009, the company has put an emphasis on customer service and employee happiness since their founding in 1996. They’ve developed a suite of products that act as a plug and play service for companies of all sizes. These products range from basic attendance, to discerning the value of each employee’s time, to tracking bills and expenses. You can choose to use their Replicon TimeAttend feature which simply monitors attendance, and can be used on a tablet like any normal time clock. Or you can use some of their other more advanced services, like Promax, which allows clients to monitor and manage contractors or other non-traditional employees.
The layout is softer than Kronos. Each product stands alone, and can be accessed through the cloud, generating independent reports.
Replicon’s customer service track record is also great for their size. They are known to resolving 95% of all customer concerns within the same day. This could be a major plus for owners concerned about reliability and support.
Another cool feature that Replicon offers is their ability to customize your workforce needs to incorporate overtime, local legal requirements, independent contractors, etc. Replicon comes with the ability to manually set your payroll requirements as defined by your local municipality. This would take away any legal guess work and ensure that you are in compliance with the law.
This cloud based program might be a good fit for companies that are well integrated into the web. However, it could be a problem if your business conducts operations offline. It’s definitely something to consider, especially since there isn’t a way for employees to manually enter their hours without doing so in real time. Another drawback is that there is no screenshot option, again leaving the question as to whether work was actually completed or not.
Time Doctor is the new kid on the block.
While Time Doctor lacks the history and infrastructure that Kronos has, Time Doctor makes up for it by dedicating its mission to make time management as easy as possible for small businesses.
Even with a small staff of about 50 employees, Time Doctor is able to provide support to every client.
Pricing is standardized at $9.99 a month per user or $5 a month for the solo plan. There is no large group sales plan like with Kronos, but if you’re a small company looking for a reasonable price, this could work for you.
When it comes to aesthetics, Time Doctor differs from the likes of Kronos by moving away from the classic look to a more modern interface.
Reports are easy to see and generate. Plus, it comes with a white label feature. This means that if you’re contracting your services to another company, you can remove any mention of the Time Doctor brand from your reports. You can send data to your clients with your own branding making you look like a superhero.
You can track your employees pretty easily with the software, and it has some cool little tricks that Kronos and Replicon don’t have.
For example, there is an optional feature that allows you to take screenshots of your employees’ workstations to ensure that they are being productive. This could be helpful if you’ve noticed a drop in productivity or responsiveness.
Another cool feature occurs if the software recognizes a period of inactivity. It will prompt you to indicate whether you’re still working. If there’s no response, Time Doctor will assume you’re on break and will leave a note for you until you come back.
By far one of the coolest options that the other two platforms don’t offer is the ability for the employees to manage their own time.
Using the two examples above, we can see ways a worker can maintain their ownership of their workstation. For example, if a time stamped screenshot is taken while an employee was not being productive, it can be deleted by the employee. However, the time spent on that page will be deducted from their overall time worked.
Another feature that Time Doctor offers is the manual entry of time spent on projects. Employees can manually insert their hours into Time Doctor, however this is represented in the report. Both of these options give autonomy to your staff, while still ensuring maximum productivity.
Well there you have it. Three great products for the time and attendance needs of your company. Depending on your size, company infrastructure, and goals, one tool will probably be better than the other two.
Will you take the tried and true Kronos but be forced to part with a large portion of your budget?
Perhaps you like the adaptable capabilities of Replicon and are able to rely on cloud based systems 100% of the time.
Or will you rely in the nimble and mobile Time Doctor and accept the risk of working with a smaller company?
These are questions that only you can answer. We’ve put in a nifty graph below indicating the pros and cons of each software to help you get a better understanding of which tool will work best for you.
Enjoy and good luck!
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