The UK economy is edging back to pre-pandemic levels and it is challenging the construction industry to keep pace.

Self-employed labour costs have jumped 20% since the first lockdown, according to Hudson Contract. It is great news and shows we are moving in the right direction. But it puts pressure on the supply chain.

We’re on the way out of the pandemics grasp but reducing costs and a steady cash flow are critical. Companies that make the most technology to capture time and attendance data can get ahead of competitors and set themselves up for success.

If they want to achieve this, then biometric time and attendance software is necessary.

In this article we look at the reasons why.

Get control with a central database

A growing number of projects requires more employees, subcontractors and self-employed workers. Companies using paper timesheets to manage the related data will struggle.

The tracking of subcontractors between projects for job costing can be messy.

That’s without considering employee absences, lateness, and conflict.

Biometric time and attendance systems provide a central database with anytime access.

You can track labour movements across sites and assign them to jobs – in real-time. It prevents absence, lateness and helps to settle disputes. Detect trends of tardiness and act before it becomes a  problem.

Eliminate bookkeeping errors

Payroll errors hurt the business and almost all manual entry tasks cause them. Even expert typists make one mistake for every 300 keystrokes. Minor slip-ups can seem trivial but have a devastating effect when combined.

You will spend less time correcting these errors by automating the source to payroll process. Workers scan their fingers or faces to sign in and out. It gets sent straight to payroll, preventing human errors. HR gets more time for value-add jobs and the business has a mistake-free picture of the actual costs.

Reduce time theft (and buddy punching)

Your workforce will grow in line with the number of projects on your books. The risks of time theft and buddy punching will increase too. Firms often overlook the damage this fraud causes. One study showed the average employee steals 4.5 hours a week. That’s six workweeks - per person - every year.

Electronic time and attendance software tracks working hours in real-time. The system logs each minute, storing the data in a central database. It leaves no room for error and biometrics will thwart buddy-punching. The business savings are immediate and impressive.

Get cash moving through the supply chain

Cash flow is crucial to all companies. For construction, it is especially critical. The rising labour costs and thin profit margins dictate that. Money needs to travel fast enough to cover the supply chain without getting tied up in the business. But manual processes and the lack of real-time data forms a bottleneck.

With this real-time data, you know the exact hours worked by everyone. It is easy to produce reports and sign off labour payments. The business can trust the output because the data is sent from the source into a central system, where payroll can process instantly.

Workers get paid the right amount. Clients have confidence in the figures.

Cash flows smoothly through the business and down the supply chain.

Reduce labour costs

The rise of labour costs increases the need to reduce them by improving processes. A chance to cut costs is by reconciling the actual hours worked against the scheduled hours. The difference can be alarming. With paper timesheets, workers can round up or outright lie, and it hurts the bottom line.

You can correct this with a biometric time and attendance system. Access to accurate data that gives you the ‘to-the-minute’ hours worked will offer immediate savings. It is one of the easiest ways to reduce labour costs. Only pay for the exact time worked.

Stay ahead of the demand

As the economy continues to recover to pre-pandemic levels, an exciting challenge is unfolding.

The industry needs to keep pace with the demand and contend with rising costs.

Companies that make the most of time and attendance data have the potential to thrive in this period. The immediate ROI is enormous, and the long-term benefits can transform the business.

If you're one of the 60% of construction companies that still rely on paper timesheets, it's essential to understand the cost of doing nothing because, as you can see, it’s costing you big. We have shown how medium-sized construction companies could save at least £175,500 annually with biometric technology.

Use our interactive online calculator to see how much you could save by switching from paper timesheets.

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