Using the Timeclock (Clocking In and Out)

HR Partner now has a Timeclock module which lets your teams populate the Timesheets module automatically based on their daily actions.

We have an independent, standalone Timeclock screen which can be run on a PC, laptop or iPad at your various work locations to let your staff clock in and out using their Employee or Timeclock codes, or else employees can start and stop their clock timers on their ESS Portal dashboard for maximum convenience.

Turning On The Timeclock

The Timeclock module is intrinsically linked to the Timesheets module (i.e. you have to have Timesheets turned on in order that you can use the clock in/out function).  The clocking actions will basically populate the employee's current timesheet sequence.

To activate the Timeclock module, go to Setup -> Company Info and select the following checkbox under the Timesheets module area (which is under the 'Additional Modules' section):

Once turned on in here, you will have to specify which timesheets will have the clock in/out functionality.  For instance, you may only wish to turn this on for your casual staff who work on the shop floor, and not for your full time staff who may be on a simpler timesheet on a different pay period.

To turn on timeclocks for a particular Timesheet, go to Timesheets -> Configure -> Templates and click the 'Edit' button next to the template you wish to change.  Then, in the middle of the timesheet options, turn on this checkbox:

That is really all you need to do.  The next step is to make sure that your employees are set up to use the timeclocks properly.

Preparing Employees For Timeclocks

Employees will have to be linked to a Timesheet Template that has been set up to use Timeclocking before they can clock in or out in the system.  By default, they will use their Employee Code to clock in/out, however if needed, you can set up a separate Timeclock Code or ID that they can use (if you need to conform with your payroll system, for example).

To check both of these, edit your employees one by one, and go to the ' ESS Portal' tab to make the changes here:

It is preferable that employees be able to edit their timesheets on their ESS Portal, so we highly recommend that (1) is turned on, however if you do not wish to allow your employees to make edits to their timesheets once they have made clocking entries, then you can turn this off.

Ensure that the timesheet template in (2) is a template that has the option turned ON for timeclock tracking as above.

Lastly, you can (3) optionally specify a Timeclock Code or ID that the employee will use on the standalone timeclock portal to clock in or out.  The employee can also clock in/out via their Employee Portal, but they will not need a code there are they will already be logged into the system and the portal will know who they are.

NOTE: The system will always use the Timeclock Code/ID to search first, and if not found, it will search the Employee Code for a match.  Please make sure that the Timeclock IDs you set up are unique within your company.

The Timeclock Portal

Once your turn on Timeclocks, you will notice a new menu option on the left hand menu bar:

Clicking this will open a NEW Browser tab or window with the Timeclock portal in it.  This page can be run completely standalone, so you can set up a laptop or tablet in your workplace which is used by all your staff to clock in or out every day.  

You can also use the manual link to open your portal, which is simply -

https://   <your subdomain>

The portal is very simple, and will look like this:

As you can see, it is a really simple portal, just showing you the current time, and a spot for the employees to enter in their Employee or Timeclock code to start/stop the clocking process.

You can customize the colors on the portal to suit your corporate branding.  To make changes, go to Timesheets -> Configure -> Clock Portal.

The options here are:

  1. Whether you wish to show your company name and/or logo at the top of the Clock Portal.
  2. The colors you wish to use for the clock portal, to suit your corporate branding guidelines.
  3. You can place a standard message at the top of the clock portal - this can be for important company notifications that your staff need to be aware of, or simply seasonal greetings.
  4. You can restrict the timeclock code entry to be alphanumeric, plain numeric or in email address format to reduce keying errors.
  5. The threshold is the minimum number of minutes apart that the clock IN and clock OUT events have to be for each employee.  For example, if you set it to 2 minutes, then if the employee clocks OUT within 2 minutes of clocking IN, then the clocking entries will be ignored.  This is to prevent any accidental clock ins (which are reversed immediately) from cluttering up your timesheet data.
  6. Each time an employee clocks IN or OUT of the system, a confirmation message will be shown to them on screen.  You can have this message auto dismiss after a few seconds so that the system is ready to take the next clock entry.
  7. Because the timeclock portal is accessible on the internet publicly, you may want to increase security a little by adding a password before the clocking portal can be accessed.

Using The Standalone Timeclock Portal

To use the portal, all your employees have to do is to enter in their Employee or Timeclock code.  They enter it once to clock on, then enter it again to clock off.  Simple as that.

The only extra thing is if you have Project/Activity tracking turned on for the Timesheet Template that the employee is linked to.  If this is the case, then the employee will be asked to (optionally) choose the Project and the Activity that they will be working on during this clocking session.

Once they are logged in, they will see this confirmation message for a short while:

They can hit 'Continue' to reset the screen, or it will automatically continue after a few seconds if the employee walks away.

To clock out, they simply enter in their Employee or Timeclock code again, and the system will confirm that they have clocked out, and will show them their total working time this session:

As soon as they clock out, the time entry will be saved to their Timesheet sequence.

IMPORTANT: You must already have generated a timesheet sequence for the date(s) that the employees will be using the clock portal to clock IN and OUT.  If the sequence is (a) not generated, or (b) been locked, or (c) the Employee's timesheet has already been marked 'Accepted', then their clocking information will NOT be saved.

NOTE: If your employee Timesheet Template is set to the 'Multi' entry type, then your employee will be able to clock in and out MULTIPLE times per day.  If however your Timesheet Template is set to 'Simple' or 'Single', then your employee will only be able to clock in ONCE per day and any further clocking attempts will be blocked.

Using The ESS Portal Timeclock

Employees who log into their Employee ESS Portal in HR Partner will also see a new Timeclock widget on their main dashboard.  This makes it super easy for them to clock IN or OUT with literally the press of a button:

Please note that once again, if the employee's Timesheet Template has Project/Activity tracking turned on, the employee will have to specify the Project and/or Activity that this clocking entry belongs to before they start the clock.  They can also enter in Notes pertaining to this clock entry which will show on their timesheet.  (Notes can be edited while the timeclock is running and will be re-submitted when the clock is stopped.

To stop the clock, the employee just clicks the 'Stop Timeclock' button after editing the Notes.  Once stopped, their total time of the last clocking event will be shown, and they can (optionally) change their project/activity and start the clock again.

NOTE: As mentioned above, only employees with 'Multi' entry Timesheet Templates can perform multiple clocking IN and OUT in a single day.  Otherwise they will only be able to clock in ONCE during the day.

Monitoring Employee Clock Activity

As an admin user, you can see what your employee clock status is at any time.  If you go to the employee view screen, you will see this information on the left hand column further down the screen:

Or else, you can open a timesheet sequence, and see the clocking status for all employees using this Timesheet Template:

The green icons specify employees that are currently marked as being clocked IN (and how long ago they clocked in), and the grey icons show employees who are clocked OUT (and when they clocked out).