Modernising Business with T&A Systems

Author: Eugenija Steponkute
Published: 16/01/2023
t&A systems

As innovation became the synonym of our day and age, businesses across all industries are in need of swift modernisation. This article is for business managers who scratch their heads about where to begin the process. Our suggested route begins with researching T&A systems.

Technical advancement means many things. From improved life quality to new experiences, it’s filled with benefits. However, they come at the cost of growing demands. While this side remains invisible to the public, businesses are forced to look for quick yet effective solutions. Growth in demand as well as increased expectations for quality bring a lot of nuances and may at times seem unrealistic. Thankfully, the cause of the issue also offers an answer to it.

In recent years, the market of software dedicated to managing and scaling businesses hasn’t stopped growing once. It means there’s a plethora of tools available for your disposal. However, with its huge volumes, it may be difficult to pick out what software would bring the most benefit to your business. Although there is no one-for-all solution, we firmly believe every company’s most valuable assets are time and workers. This is why we recommend prioritising getting a T&A system.

What Are T&A systems?

T&A stands for Time and Attendance systems. They usually include the following features:

  1. Clocking in and out facilities

  2. Time off work management

  3. Time tracking

  4. Pay rate calculation

  5. Reporting

  6. Easy accessibility

      7.   Payroll integrations

Whether your business utilises hourly workers or focuses on deliverables, T&A systems are a valuable asset to your strategy. They give a holistic view of your team’s performance and time distribution across the tasks. This allows you to identify and address potential gaps, as well as forecast more accurately. Leave management also makes it easier to manage your available resources and identify potential cases of absenteeism.

A Solution Shaped by Your Needs

Gone are the days when you would need to change your business for it to work with the latest piece of software. T&A systems of today are built to adapt to your business instead. The best solutions on the market are highly customisable and can therefore be adjusted in accordance with your existing procedures. But let us explain it in greater detail. 

Irregular Pay Rates & Shift Patterns

In theory, paying workers for the time they spend executing their duties is plain and simple. In practice, however, it is riddled with nuances. The most common one is the case of differentiating rates. For example, your morning workers and evening workers may be offered a different rate. It can get very complicated very easily as often the same worker isn’t bound to just one shift pattern. The same applies to tasks. For example, you may have several different deliverables for one project but based on how tasking they are, they may come at a different rate. Even with a system in place to calculate these rates manually, the process is time-consuming and prone to human error. 

A highly customisable time and attendance system solves this issue. Instead of subjecting either yourself or your accounting team to tedious admin, it will do it for you. Most high-end solutions are designed to accommodate this specific challenge, allowing you to build unique timesheets to match your needs. At Timesheet Portal, we offer a system of timesheet rules. They range from setting a limit to hours worked through the day/week to linking specific rates to specific days or hours. To simplify the process further, when you onboard Timesheet Portal, you don’t need to set any of these configurations up yourself. Our skilled implementation team will do it for you, so you can log into the system and get going right away.

Multiple Access Points 

One of the dilemmas when it comes to time tracking is that a lot of industries relying on it simply can’t have a clock in/out terminal on the site. Think of workplaces such as construction or hospitality. Often this is the reason why they utilise the most ancient and most unreliable method of time tracking - paper timesheets. Simply put, they are easily tampered with, get lost easily and people simply forget to fill them in. Another issue would be the chore itself of filling timesheets in. Let’s be honest - no one likes doing it, especially when it means staying a couple of minutes after work. 

T&A systems are normally cloud-based, meaning they are easily accessible across any device as long as it has internet access. Some come in a form of an app, others can be accessed via an internet browser only. The point is that they can be reached virtually from anywhere. Although if you rely on a clock-in/out system, you might want to get one that comes with geo-tracking to ensure the workers are truly on site. Since each team member has their own unique access, the use of this method eliminates buddy punching. The attendance data collected this way is also quicker to approve and analyse. What’s more, it comes with an approval system which saves you time correcting timesheets by simply sending them back if they are not filled correctly. 

Benefits of T&A Systems

Time and attendance systems entail more than what the name suggests. While this is the key purpose, the right piece of software will add value to multiple processes across the business. Its use stretches beyond the direct users who log their time in. In fact, almost every department in your company will see the benefit of the fitting software in action. 

Less Room for Error and Malpractice

Human error is a thing. Even with the best intentions, it’s easy to accidentally mistype one number and cause complete havoc in your data. The use of time and attendance software minimises such risk. Simply put, there won’t be much human involvement when handling calculations. And even if there are errors in the submitted timesheets, the approver can easily amend them. The changes will automatically reflect on the rest of the existing documentation such as reports.

We’ve already touched upon the topic of T&A systems being immune to malicious manipulations of timesheets. Namely buddy-punching and logging in the hours the worker hasn’t been present on site. There is another layer of defence to add. Sometimes, you might find that the workers will purposely drag their feet when completing tasks, especially when their overtime is compensated. Even with geo-tracking intact, they can choose to spend additional time around the work site doing nothing, yet claim their after-work hours there were spent working towards deliverables. Of course, such cases are rare, but since they exist you should consider protecting yourself. Some systems, like Timesheet Portal, allow you to enforce timesheet rules. When applied, they will prevent your workers from adding more than the allocated hours on a daily or weekly basis.

Accurate and Quick Reporting 

Data collection is one of the key advantages you expect when you onboard any type of software. However, it is a little counter-effective if it is then spread across the entire tool and you have to fish it out manually. Not to mention you then need to segment the bits you need and put them in a centralised document to start the analysis. Needless to say, the entire process is long and eats up a lot of time. On top of that, there are countless possibilities for things to go wrong at every step. From accidentally misreading the data to mistyping it. The smallest error leads to the rest of the report being skewed. And bad reports lead to bad decisions. 

Nowadays, most T&A systems fall into the SaaS category, thus they’re cloud-based and easily accessible via browsers. One of the main selling points of this technology is quick, effortless and accurate reporting. Not only does the tool collect information, but it only spends a couple of seconds to put it in a visual format that’s easy for you to study and draw insights from. There is usually a variety of filters that will allow you to choose the exact bits of data you want to analyse. Such can be data ranges, specific tasks or locations, or even something as granular as an hour-by-hour overview of an individual worker. At Timesheet Portal, we supply our users with 40+ in-built report templates, as well as an option to create an unlimited number of custom-made reports. Not to mention, we keep their creation very easy: a simple drag-and-drop menu will help you create your perfect template in minutes. 

Choosing the Right Platform

As we’ve concluded, the right tool can truly transform your business. However, there comes another challenge - how to find the said tool in a densely saturated market? The usual answer would be focusing on core features as opposed to extensive lists of functionality. We’ve covered it here. But there are also other factors to influence your decision. 

Non-technical Criteria to Consider

Although the main thing to care about when adopting the software is whether its features suit you, you should rush with a purchase based on that alone. The second most important consideration point should be pricing. Some companies still avoid listing their pricing, so you will need to do the footwork yourself. Others offer different tiers; that’s where you need to compare the suggested packages to identify the one that suits you best. And then there’s the model we use at Timesheet Portal - we charge per feature, allowing our users to only pay for what they use. Additionally, dig for information on how will you be paying for the software. Is it a one-time off licence or a monthly subscription? Can you upgrade, downgrade or cancel the service and will there be additional charges?

Also, think ahead of what will your experience be once you commit to the software. For example, will you be entitled to live customer support, or will you be needing to wait for assistance? Check if there are any courses or guides available on how to get the most out of the tool. These resources will save you time and effort when training your team on the new tool as well as when onboarding new members. In other words, the overall software must fit your business and how it operates. When choosing the tool that suits your company holistically, you avoid the threat of signing up for services you won’t be able to utilise fully. 


Despite the business landscape changing, the most valuable assets of every company remain the same: people and time. The era of technical advancement brings a lot of challenges, but it also delivers innovative solutions. Despite the wide range of tools available, your best bet would be to focus on T&A systems. These solutions, in their essence, are designed to help you manage both, your workers and your time, in more productive ways. This is definitely the easiest and most intuitive way for businesses to meet the increase in demand and expectations.

What’s more, SaaS software isn’t a fad you will be needing to replace in a couple of years. It is designed to grow and scale alongside your business, therefore guaranteeing longevity. Additionally, the more you use it, the more beneficial it becomes. The caveat is that there are many factors to consider when choosing your ‘forever’ tool. It is not limited to features, but also how the software is priced and managed by the vendor. All in all, it needs to suit your business like a glove. Given how many options are out there, there is certainly something for everyone.

Could Timesheet Portal be your right fit? Find out today.

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Timesheet Portal online software provided by Anfold Software Ltd, a registered company in the UK.