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2017 Year in Review: A Look Back on Time and Attendance Trends Affecting Your Business

Time and Attendance Trends Affecting Your Business

As 2017 comes to a close, TrackSmart takes a look back at the time and attendance changes that occurred and changes that may continue to impact your business in 2018.

Online Timekeeping on the Rise

The trend toward online scheduling continues to grow, as outdated systems such as paper time sheets, spreadsheets and punch cards prove too inefficient and slow down productivity.

Reasons Why Online Timekeeping Is Continually Growing:

  • Accuracy
    Online software can help prevent errors and simplify the process of storing detailed employee information.
  • Convenience
    Cloud-based software allows employers to easily track and manage employee time and attendance.
  • Less Risk, More Reward
    Time and attendance tracking software such as TrackSmart minimizes the time spent inputting and correcting information. Additionally, it makes communicating with employees easier for busy small business owners and managers.

The Uncertainty of the FLSA Overtime Rule

In December 2017, the once-blocked Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) overtime rule was back on the table before Congress. If the rule would have gone into effect as originally proposed, it would have more than doubled the salary threshold for exempt (i.e., “salaried”) employees, which would make them ineligible for overtime — from $455/week ($23,660 a year) to $913/week ($47,476 a year).

However, last year, a federal judge in Texas granted a nationwide injunction blocking the FLSA overtime rule, just 10 days before the rule was expected to take effect on December 1.

The new bill pending before Congress will again review overtime requirements. But since the FLSA overtime bill has had such a chaotic past, it’s impossible to know what the end result will be.

Predictive Scheduling Laws Make Headlines

In 2017, some states adopted “predictive scheduling” laws to improve job stability, but many believe these laws are more of a burden than a benefit.

Predictive scheduling ensures employees are guaranteed a certain amount of work hours and pay should their hours be shifted. These laws currently affect certain cities such as Seattle, WA, New York, NY, Emeryville, CA, and San Francisco, CA, but are expected to expand in other states.

Under this initiative, employers must provide employees’ work schedules a few weeks in advance and guarantee them a certain base pay should their hours be reduced unexpectedly. This is thought to benefit employees because it provides some stability to jobs that can be unpredictable. However, it can be costly for small businesses that struggle with schedule changes or gaps when an employee calls in sick or they have slow periods at their business.

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