Time tracking for hybrid work: how to set it up?

5 min Published on 26 January 2023
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The notion of hybrid working time was born out of the Covid-19 health crisis. As employees are expected to work both on-site and remotely, certain changes must be made to successfully manage this new way of working within any organization. Table of contents:
 
 young woman on a phone call in front of her computer
 

2. The benefits of hybrid working time tracking

Time tracking is a requirement that also serves as a measure of performance and productivity for workers, especially when the work is done remotely. M oreover, this system facilitates the management of overtime, absences, and their justification, which is especially beneficial when telework is used in a full-time or hybrid capacity. Setting up an automated tracking system saves the company time in terms of administrative tasks, and it allows focusing on the core of human resources: human capital.

3. Working from home versus workers' rights

The particularity of remote work is that the worker carries out his tasks at home, which is a private place. When it comes to monitoring remote workers, constant video or audio monitoring is prohibited. Continuous monitoring of screens and keyboard recording software are also prohibited. Geolocation is also strictly regulated. If this type of monitoring goes beyond the tracking of working hours, it is nevertheless indicative of the work requirements imposed by the company.
 
 mother with her kids in home office
 

4. How to track hybrid working time?

The tracking of office working time can be done using the following tools :
  • Electronic time clocks installed on site
  • Paper tracking logs
  • Digital spreadsheets
  • Time and attendance software
Not all of these tools are compatible with the home working setup. This is particularly true of electronic time recorders and paper records, which must remain at the company's headquarters. Selecting a hybrid work time tracking system necessitates taking into account the twofold nature of this type of labour: in-person and remote. To ensure an optimal management of hybrid work hours, it is advisable to utilize one tool to monitor the time spent working both in the office, and at home.
 
 group of colleagues working at the office
 

5. Using spreadsheets to record working time

It can be tempting for an employer to use a spreadsheet to set up a time tracking system. Many solutions exist, including the popular Excel software. These customizable tools can record the beginning and end times of each employee. Employees can fill out an online daily or weekly Excel workbook and submit it via email to the organization. This apparent ease of use has a downside when, due in part to the number of employees, it leads to a large volume of data that needs to be managed. It creates a complex administration process for the employer, that increases the risk of making mistakes and incurring fines.

6. The best tools for monitoring hybrid working time

In order to fulfil their legal obligations to monitor working time, employers who have opted for a hybrid system have more effective alternatives than a spreadsheet:
  • Facial recognition
  • Time and attendance software

Facial recognition for time tracking

Facial recognition technology is increasingly being utilized in smartphones and access control systems. It can be used to record working times in the office or remotely. However, there are certain limitations associated with its implementation. The first one is that it is a cumbersome system to set up because a biometric database must be created and then regularly updated. S econdly, there is a substantial investment required for the computer system and facial recognition sensors that must be installed in the workplace and employee residences. This type of system involves a significant initial investment. Both in terms of the physical equipment and the system needed to operate it.

Hybrid time tracking software

Using an online HR software to record hybrid working time is the most effective option. This is because the same tool can manage the time tracking requirements for both face-to-face and work from home cases. It is also easy and cost-effective to set up. It allows the employer to fulfil his legal obligations to monitor working hours at a lower cost without getting lost in paper forms or calculation sheets. In addition, an HR software makes it easier to customize the working hours of individual employees. A good time tracking software includes automatic time management: hours worked, overtime, and holidays. The great advantage of this centralization is transparency: all data is permanently accessible, without the need to compile spreadsheets or paper records. Moreover, for the employee, entering working time is simple: one click on a computer or a smartphone is enough.
 
 hr employees working on a time tracking software
 

7. The benefits of hybrid time tracking with an online software

The Covid-19 pandemic has caused a shift in the way time tracking is conducted. Companies have replaced their badge machines or paper forms with tools that are suitable for hybrid working. Dematerialized solutions, which simplify the monitoring of working time, are becoming increasingly popular due to their efficiency and cost-effectiveness. The reasons behind this success are easily understood.

Reduced investment

The use of online software does not involve any investment in specific hardware. There is no need to install a new software system or a dedicated server, for example. Moreover, digitization avoids the use of paper and speeds up the processing. From the collection of time data to its processing, everything is done online. Faster and at a more controlled cost. On the workers' side, the use of online software eliminates the need for physical installation on their computers or smartphones.

Ease of use

Where spreadsheets require computer and mathematical skills to operate, online software simplifies the working life of users. The interfaces are often easy to learn, which saves time for employees and HR managers. In addition, a time and attendance software is a tool that simplifies the control of working time. All information is centralized and accessible at any time. This facilitates both personnel management and compliance with legislation.

Regulation-compliant system

Like other working time monitoring tools, online HR software is fully compliant with legal requirements, which is a guarantee of security in the event of an audit or intervention by the labour inspectorate. These advantages explain the growing popularity of hybrid online time tracking software. More and more companies are now favouring these online tools, whether for on-site work, w ork from home or hybrid work.
 

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