On call business can be tricky business. But, if you’re in the service industry, you may not be able to avoid having on-call employees. The laws vary depending on your business type and location, so you may or may not have to compensate your employees for “sleeper time” (or, their non-working on-call time). Usually, you would only have to pay for this off time if an employee has to sleep on site (as is the case with a hotel manager). Most employees don’t get paid for sleeper time, so you just have to worry about tracking the time they are actually on the job (which will vary).
There are a few reasons you would want to keep a close watch on this time. The first is obvious: so you know how much to pay each employee. Another reason you might want to track on-call time is to know how to manage your staff. If for example you have two people on call, but you only get one or two calls on a given day of the week, you might consider cutting back.
With a good attendance system, you can easily track your on-call employees’ time in order to run your business more smoothly.
Here is a step-by-step guide for doing just that:
- Choose the right attendance system. Seem obvious? Okay, maybe a little. It’s just too important to leave off the list. Your attendance system must allow employees to check in from their on-call location via phone or web. It should have measures in place to avoid having them check in at home (unless you’ve agreed to pay for their travel time). This time and attendance system should track in real time, so you know right away if you’re employees are at the job. It should also allow you to enter job codes and run reports, so you can keep track of their weekly work.
- Have your on-call employees check in from the physical location. If your employees are always needed at the same place, you can require that they always check in from specific number (or one of a few specific numbers). If this isn’t possible, you can rely on voice authentication. This way, you’ll know that your employees are actually checking in themselves.
- Use job codes to track on-call work. If you ever want to be able to evaluate how much time your employees actually spend working while on call (which is something you’ll probably want to do), job codes are an easy way to do this. If your attendance system allows employees to enter job codes, you can assign a specific job code to on-call work, and then run a simple report at the end of the week (or month, or year).
Managing on-call employees doesn’t have to be a chore. With the right attendance system, your employees enter the information and technology does the rest. You don’t have to worry about manual time tracking, and you can run your business more efficiently.