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Best Practices for Creating Time Punches

With the ExakTime system, you and your employees can be flexible with how they can track their time with any of our offerings (Connect Clock, ExakTime Mobile, and JobClocks), but we have some best practices to maximize success for everyone, from the employee out in the field to the administrators in the office, to accurately track time.

For an employee to track their time, they will create a "time punch" when they clock in with a location (where they are working) and cost code (activity/what they are doing) and/or when they clock out. With an "in punch" and an "out punch", we can create a "time record" to represent how long an employee was working at a location and performing a cost code. How detailed an employee's time card can be will ultimately be up to you with the creation of locations and/or cost codes and how often your have your employees clock in.

It is best to set a standard practice early for your employees when clocking in/out to teach and help ensure your employees can create their time records for their time cards. 

Table of Contents

Tracking Methods for Employees

With ExakTime Mobile/Connect Clock

When employees clock in, either on their own or by a supervisor, they will press GO on ExakTime Mobile/Connect Clock to create their "in punch" with their current location and cost code.

If an employee needs to change their location or cost code, due to either working at another location or needing to change their cost code, the employee will press GO to clock in again and select their new current location and/or cost code. As the employee has a new "in punch", ExakTime will stop their previous "in punch" at the same time as their new "in punch" and create a time record for what they were last doing. The employee would repeat this process of clocking in to change their location and/or cost code.

When the employee is no longer tracking their time, either for a break or at the end of their work, the employee will press STOP to create their "out punch" and complete their time record.

As the employee creates and sends their "in" and "out" punches to ExakTime Connect, all of the punches are consolidated to create time records for their time card. 

With Keytabs & JobClocks

Keytabs are set up by being assigned to an employee with a cost code so the keytab can indicate who it is and what they are going to be doing. The JobClock that the employee clocks in to with a keytab will indicate their location.

The employee would create their "in punch" by tapping their keytab to the touchplate of the JobClock. If they were to perform other actions or move to a different location, they would use the appropriate keytab and tap the touchplate again to create a new "in punch" on a JobClock. 

If the employee is no longer tracking their time, such as for a break or for the end of their day, they would use the appropriate keytab, generally a red keytab, to create an "out punch".

After the records are collected from the JobClock and sent to ExakTime Connect, either through a FastTrakker Pro, JobClock Reader, or cellular data (JobClock Hornet), all of an employee's "in" and "out" punches are consolidated to create their time records for their time card. 

Example of a Work Day

In our example below, we have an employee who is working at a couple of locations and performing various cost codes throughout the day. We have provided examples done through ExakTime Mobile, Keytabs & JobClocks, and manually on ExakTime Connect to show that all of them will look and function similarly with the following work day.

  1. Clock In at 8 AM to Location A and Cost Code A to start their day.
  2. Clock In at 11 AM to Location A and Cost Code B to change their cost code. 
  3. Clock In at 12 PM to Location B and Cost Code B to change their location.
  4. Clock In at 3 PM to Location B and Cost Code C to change their location and cost code.
  5. Clock Out at 3:30 PM to end their day.

With ExakTime Mobile/Connect Clock

ETC_-_BP_-_Clocking_In_-_Mobile_-_00.png

With Keytabs & JobClocks

ETC_-_BP_-_Clocking_In_-_Keytabs_-_00.png

With Time Card Details

  1. Add time for 8 AM to Location A and Cost Code A to start their day.
  2. Add time for 11 AM to Location A and Cost Code B to change their cost code. 
  3. Add time for 12 PM to Location B and Cost Code B to change their location.
  4. Add time for 3 PM to Location B and Cost Code C to their cost code again and enable "Clock Out" for 3:30 PM to end their day.

ETC_-_BP_-_Clocking_In_-_Manual_-_00.png

Time Card Result

No matter what method was used to create an employee's time card, the end result should look similar.

Employees do not need to clock out before changing their location or cost code. The employee only needs to clock in and choose the appropriate locations/cost codes or use the appropriate keytab on a JobClock. When adding time records manually, only the clock in is needed as the clock out will automatically use the clock in of the succeeding time record.

By not needing to clock out with ExakTime Mobile or Keytabs and then immediately clocking back in to change their location and/or cost code, the employee has one less button to press which also helps prevent situations where an employee forgets to clock back in after clocking out. 

ETC_-_BP_-_Clocking_In_-_00.png

Special Considerations

Beyond the typical clock in and out for an employee to track their workday, you may need to track unique actions/situations.

Travel Time

Depending on your needs, you may need to associate an employee's travel time with the location they are leaving from or headed to. To help accommodate this, you can use our "Travel" policy that will automatically adjust the location of a time record if it has a "Travel" cost code. This allows your employees to clock in by selecting their current location as normal and ExakTime will automatically adjust the location for you.

For more information about setting up Travel time, please refer to the following dedicated article.

Tracking Meal Breaks

When tracking meals, there are three ways that this can currently be handled with ExakTime:

  • Manually Clock Out
  • Manual Meal Breaks
  • Automatic Lunch Deduction

If your employees have various lengths of breaks your employees can clock out by pressing STOP or using their keytab, taking their meal break, and clocking back in when finished with their meal break.

You can also use the manual meal break option that adds a "Meal Break" button on ExakTime Mobile/Connect Clock to start and end their meal break. You can also enable a reminder to remind the employee of when they should start and end their meal break. 

Alternatively, if your employees have a set meal break duration and do not want your employees to manage it themselves, you can enable our "auto lunch" option to automatically deduct the same amount of time if the employee were to work over a specified number of hours.

For more information about manual meal breaks, refer to the following dedicated article.

For more information about automatic lunch deductions, refer to the following dedicated article.

Tracking Clients instead of Locations

While we advise an employee to clock in to the location that they are currently standing at, there may be circumstances where this would not be best depending on your company's needs.

For example, If you are fabricating/manufacturing products for a client at your shop, you may not want the employee to select a location called "Shop" as you would lose the detail of the time going towards the client.

Another example would be if an employee is picking up materials/equipment from a supplier, you may not want to use the supplier's location to track time against.

In short, we advise selecting the location that an employee is standing at as it covers the majority of situations, the use of locations is ultimately to put time towards a client/location and can be dependent on the needs of your company. 

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