How to Enforce Time and Attendance Policies in Your Workplace

As an employer, you should aim to hire reliable people who arrive on time and work until their shift is officially over. But you may encounter situations where employees violate your time and attendance policies.

Tardy or absentee employees can cost employers money by reducing workplace productivity and causing employers to pay for time in which employees didn’t perform work. In some cases, late employees may even falsify their time sheets.

It can be startling when you understand how much small increments of lost time can add up over the course of the year. Take an example where a non-exempt employee is consistently ten minutes late to work and worked twenty days per month all year. This could add up to 40 hours of pay for time not worked annually. Ultimately, you’re paying that employee for a week of time that wasn’t spent creating value for your business.

Another result in the above example may include a negative impact to office morale. Punctual employees may feel resentment if employees who frequently show up late aren’t reprimanded or penalized for their tardiness.

Given the importance of an effective time and attendance policy to a business, how can you enforce these procedures?

Create concrete attendance rules.

Employers often find that it’s effective to institute a formal attendance policy as part of their overall HR guidelines for employees. Such a policy should address:

  • Disciplinary practices for chronic absenteeism
  • How and whom to notify in advance of not showing up for work
  • Documentation required to give to employer (i.e., a doctor’s note)

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