This article covers the benefits and other considerations of time and attendance integration. Whether you are considering an integration with access control, payroll or any other application, this article is designed to help you understand the potential advantages.
Integration is the combination of two or more systems working in conjunction with each other. In terms of software applications, this is essentially when two applications are given the ability to ‘talk’ to each other and pass relevant pieces of information.
Most software applications are driven by a database. A database is a library of where records, information and events are stored. For example, an employee’s contact details in a time and attendance system are stored in the database; a record of ‘John Smith’ going through the front door of an office is stored in an access control database. Modern software applications usually allow a method of secure communication so that one application can ‘talk’ to another application and request information. There are a number of ways that this can be carried out, but in today’s world this is usually achieved by using an API (Application Program Interface). Click here for more information about API’s.
There are a number of key integrations that increase the potential return on investment for any time and attendance system. The two most commonly requested integrations are integration to payroll and integration to access control applications.
Essentially, a time and attendance solution can calculate your payroll based on the rules, policies and procedures of your organisation. It can ensure compliance that employees are working the hours that they are contracted to do, and calculate overtime. Once the calculations are completed, most organisations use a payroll service to manage the processing of payroll. Integrating payroll with time and attendance software automates this process and can save hours of administration time.
Electronic access control systems are designed to monitor the flow of people and allow organisations to control physical access to restricted parts of a building. At a simple level, the system will contain details of every employee and they will be given an ‘access token’. This could be a card/fob, a PIN or a biometric template. This token represents the employee. The system will allow employees to open doors to areas where they have access. For example, everyone may have access to the reception but only a select few will have access to a server room. Whenever someone presents their token to a door reader, the access control system will generate an event in the database. For example, ‘John Smith entered the front door at 08:57:14 on 24/04/20’. An integration between a time and attendance solution and an access control system allows this event to be passed from one system to the other. In this case, it could start John Smith’s payroll process.
An integrated time and attendance solution can save your business money in a number of ways. If the solution is integrated with access control then you may not need to spend money on clocking terminals. The events of when people came and left your building will be converted into clocking in and clocking out events. When payroll is calculated through a time and attendance solution, and is integrated with a payroll system, this will also save a significant amount of time and money on manual processing. An integrated solution will also mitigate the risk of human error which, even if it is realised at some point in the future, can result in significant effort in rectifying the problem.
Thinking Software is considered a world leader in integrated time and attendance solutions. For 25 years, we have been privileged to work alongside and be recognised by some of the most reputable access control and payroll platforms. We have a specialist team of developers, with experience in getting the best results from an integration. We have integrations to over 35 different systems. Click here to see more about our current integrations.
Thinking Software’s solutions can be deployed in an integrated way, but they can also be deployed as a completely standalone solution. We have many different clocking in terminals, from swipe card and RFID to sophisticated fingerprint, face and iris recognition readers that can completely eliminate buddy-punching.
If you are considering adopting a time and attendance solution for your business, then why not give one of our friendly sales team a call? We pride ourselves in being an industry leader. Our professional approach means that we will never try to sell a solution if it is not fit for purpose. Our advice comes from over 25 years of experience working in partnership with some of the most globally recognisable brands. We offer free, no-obligation online demonstrations so that you can see how configurable, intuitive and scalable our solutions are for yourself.
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