Mobile Time Clock System

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by Rex Mann, Dec 23, 2005.

  1. Rex Mann

    Rex Mann LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 621

    Happiest of Holidays to All.

    Our company has all its employees drive to the various job sites every day.
    Currently they record their own time on a blank time clock card. They hand write it in when they start, took lunch and ended, and when they finished.

    Of course they do not do this every day. They all do it the 5-minutes before the cards are due. So they all read the same. They do all ride together, but some of them drive to a fast food for lunch and some stay on site.

    As any employer, I feel I may be paying for more time than they actually are working.

    I have looked into a mobile time keeping system called "Job Clock".
    The clock is the size of a combination lock. The clock can be locked to something on the jobsite, like a knack box or a structure. Employees have an in and out tab. They swipe the appropriate tab over the clock and it keeps track. Then a palm pilot is used to retrieve the data and download into the computer back at the office.

    Any one use this any device similar? If so, pros and cons, or any other things to look for or watch out for.



  2. Az Gardener

    Az Gardener LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,899

    Hey, a fellow Phonecian. I don't know a thing about the device you are describing. I do however have some info I was surprised to find out and may be of some interest. Apparently if you have Sprint phone service and you own/pay for the service on your crews phones you can track them through Gps on your computer as long as the phone is turned on. So at the end of the day look at the time sheet and enter the time clocked in or out and see where they were at that time. A friend of mine locally in the industry has this feature and says it has saved him a bundle, freaks his guys out and they have straightened up. He ended up firing one supervisor who was only in his service areas about 1.5-3 hrs. per day.
  3. nephilim0167

    nephilim0167 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 144

    The only real problem that I could see with the system RM is describing is what will let you know if the employees were to leave the site? Clock in, do 10min of work and then go hang out at Arbys for an hour? Come back clock out and call it a day? The good thing about the Spring idea is that you are actually tracking the crew all day. May be pricey but what about installing an onstar type service in the vehicle? Just an idea to ponder.

    Cheers, man..
  4. hoyboy

    hoyboy LawnSite Senior Member
    from Chicago
    Messages: 346

    I looked into the job clock system. Great idea, but pretty costly. I think if you had some real large customers it might be ok, but for way. I was considering it for a couple commercial snow plow customers that are billed hourly.

  5. AintNoFun

    AintNoFun LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,807

    its a little different from your needs but at our shop we just put in the timeclock where they use there hand to punch in, i can't wait to see how much money its gonna save...
  6. RHayden

    RHayden LawnSite Member
    Messages: 123

    I checked into the job clock system and found it just wouldn't tell us everything we needed to know. At the price quoted I was expecting something that could help separate out load time, travel time, lunches, errands etc. With our set up every employee would basically need their own clock with a couple of handfuls of the colored key tabs and would spend more time swiping these thru than was feasible.

    I could see the benefits of this system if you done a lot of large commercial projects where the crews where on site for a week or more, but unless they remember to swipe the appropriate key tab at the right time I think it would wind up being an expensive version of a regular time clock. There still would be know way to tell if they left for coffee and donuts or whatever.

    Now the Sprint deal mentioned above sounds pretty intriguing. I will check into that next.
  7. mtdman

    mtdman LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,143

    I would think the foreman on the job should be responsible for making everyone's timecard correct and accurate. I would make it policy that every card is filled out daily. Maybe make the time card a computer entry that must be made each day. I always fill out the timesheets every day, and make the employee sign off at the end of the week.
  8. hoyboy

    hoyboy LawnSite Senior Member
    from Chicago
    Messages: 346

    The value is in the proof to the customer that you were there at a certain time. You have to be there to clock in or out. It's not a matter of keeping timecards elsewhere.
  9. Rex Mann

    Rex Mann LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 621

    I trust my employees to clock in and work, not leave the site.
    My reason for getting the job clock system or something similar is to
    prevent the guys from getting there at 7:05 and putting in 7:00 or leaving at 4:36 and putting 4:45. 5 or 10 minutes multiplied by 14 employees is 1-hour and 10-minutes, best case scenario, times twice a day at an average wage rate of $12.15 per hour would save me at least $28.00 per day plus burden or $140.00 per week or $7,000.00 per year. That's not even figuring in any overtime.

    Our jobs average about 3000 square feet. So we are sometimes on the same site for a week or more. I like the fact it can track different tasks. We do not have that many. I am budgeting for it to be put into place 2006. We will start one crew off and see how it works.


  10. stumper1620

    stumper1620 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,889

    I think the key is to have a very responsible crew leader.
    Back when I did Irrigation The whole crew maintained their own card but the crew leader was the card that counted, If his did'nt match the others the Questions started. the only time that was not accurate was if someone left early and even then the crew leader wrote it down as a note on his daily trip sheet.
    Thing is that was several years ago and maybe we were more honest than you are dealing with. we really never had problems because 3 guys were watching each other and we didn't think about cheating anyway.

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