The introduction of quarantine measures linked to the rapid spread of the COVID-19 virus has placed restrictions on the activities of many companies. Companies are rapidly moving employees to remote work, which helps maintain a balance between self-isolation and getting things done. While before the time monitoring of remote employees was mainly interesting for the IT sector, today it is relevant for all fields of activity.
Jobsora has prepared an overview of the best monitoring services and applications, a set of anti-crisis recommendations, and will also tell you about the impact of weather tracking on the microclimate in the team.
Time tracking: increased control or business benefits?
Employees accustomed to working “call to call” after switching to remote work may experience problems with proper time allocation.
There is no boss, which means you can sleep, watch movies, and do other things unrelated to work processes. It is very difficult to supervise the work of a remote office without using special programs. Time tracking is therefore to the rescue – programs created to record and control working hours, which is especially important for companies that practice hourly wages. The software is installed on employees’ computers and smartphones, after which you can monitor the efficiency of their work.
The accounting and control algorithm depends on the selected program, they can:
• define geolocation, open websites, actions in applications and programs;
• follow the operations of the mouse and the keyboard;
• take screenshots;
• launch a webcam to create a photo – the choice of functions is quite wide.
Of course, the use of these programs and services is beneficial for the business. The employer sees activity, he may not be afraid of missing deadlines or of the fact that the employee will imitate the activity, neglecting his duties.
Benefits of time tracking
The main advantage is the possibility of preventing a decrease in efficiency and losses caused by negligence of the personnel. Consider other advantages.
The correct distribution of financial flows
People working remotely will receive a salary based on the hours worked, as well as the volume of tasks performed. The company will not pay for the employee’s time spent solving personal problems. Some trackers generate reports of working hours, on the basis of which the accountant can calculate the payroll. Such measures are anti-crisis for businesses, especially in the context of a sharp decline in client activity in various fields – from construction services to web auditing.
Team verification and optimization
HR managers and employers will have a unique opportunity to assess the honesty and worth of each specialist. You will be able to see how responsible each member of the team is. After 1.5 to 2 weeks, it will be possible to make decisions related to personnel changes. Maybe a single manager can handle large volumes of tasks better than 3 or 4 people. Isn’t it easier to lay off superfluous workers and increase wages? Answers to these and other questions can be obtained after the introduction of time tracking.
Employees who know their work is controlled by a special program will work instead of rest. The software has the highest simulation efficiency compared to calls, instant messaging or email newsletters.
The ability to continuously monitor and plan is one of the most important benefits of time trackers. Employees or project managers formulate tasks, plan the deadline for their implementation, so the business runs like clockwork. This approach avoids burning deadlines, churning out customers and disrupting the mechanism of other business processes.
Communication with clients
The business client can always see real reports on the implementation stage of their project. This approach builds customer confidence.
What programs can be used for time tracking?
The choice of software is huge, most programs are implemented on a paid basis, some have free demos and access for a limited number of people (average 1-5). Many of them are cross-platform, which means that they can be used without problems on computers, smartphones and
t tablets running on different operating systems. By choosing such software, the employer can pay attention to WorkSmart, Tick, OfficeTime, Harvest, ProofHub. When choosing, you must take into account the number of people or projects, as well as the principle of pricing. For example, the Tick tracker charges for the number of projects, Harvest – for the number of users, OfficeTime offers a perpetual license, a ProofHub subscription can be purchased for a month or a year.
Characteristics of the impact of time tracking on the microclimate in the team
Specialists who have worked in the office for years may have an ambiguous perception of the implementation of the software in question. For some, such actions will seem too harsh, another person will see full control and even oversight, however, under the current conditions, the company should be ready to make unpopular decisions. It should not be forgotten that the employees, having passed the adjustment period, will take a fresh look at the elements of control. The latter will stimulate their development, help to allocate time correctly and assess the volume of tasks. The advisability of setting up time tracking is assessed by the manager taking into account the following factors:
• the volume of staff transferred to remote work. You can control 2-3 people without special software. If 10-20 or more people work at a remote site, you can’t do without outside help;
• the need to reduce wages. If the business owner plans to pay for the actual volume of tasks performed or hours, it is best to opt for tracking;
• business features. In some areas, specialists can work from home without the need for communication. In other niches of the business there are many processes associated with communication, the interaction of specialists – it just does not work to delay time. For example, one employee makes sketches, another – 3D visualization, the third communicates with the client, so that he makes sure that the project is completed on time. It is not that easy to disappear from an interacting team, so mutual control is done without third-party software.
The main factor is the level of corporate ethics and the specialists who work in the company. In some cases, rigorous controls can be ignored. We are talking about teams of responsible people who focus on the result. They don’t consider uddalenka a vacation; working from home is for them a small change from the usual regime, but no more. This result is achieved through coaching, training, business games and other development tools.
In this case, you can use the standard task managers (often they are already built into the time trackers), which will help you distribute responsibilities, set deadlines and smoothly monitor their implementation. They automate all processes, minimize the need for online conferences and constant calls, and keep your finger on the pulse of events 24 hours a day. Using task managers allows you to implement planning, communicate with the team online.
Remote employees are most often monitored using special software. You can use control systems within the team, creating chains of tasks for different specialists. Remember the importance of planning, implementing motivation systems, regularly scheduling meetings and meetings that take place using video conferencing apps. If the business owner decides not to resort to strict measures, he can advise remote employees to install apps that will help them control working hours, which is useful for self-discipline.