Workforce Management - The most commonly asked questions


When switching to an automated workforce management system, a cloud of uncertainty and confusion may arise from what seems to be overwhelming technology. Luckily, there is a strong willingness to learn more about this valuable process. Here are the some frequently asked questions that are vital to anyone seeking to automate their workforce:
1. What is Workforce Management?
Workforce management (WFM) is part of the Greater Human Capital Management (HCM) Model that encompasses all the activities, processes, and tools needed to manage labour. A comprehensive WFM includes planning, forecasting, scheduling, and tracking workers to optimize the balance of customer, employee, labour laws, and organizational needs.
2. Who uses WFM?
Buyers – Originally, is was used by HR, Payroll and IT Departments for human resources functions, but Finance and Operation Departments are beginning to utilize WFM for a more strategic productivity application.
Users – Originally viewed to be for hourly shift workers, but is now moving towards the entire labour force in any industry. Companies with contingent, salaries, and off-site workers are beginning to realize the benefits of implementing a WFM solution.

3. Why do I need a WFM solution?
  • Reduce payroll errors
  • Reduce total payroll processing time
  • Reduce unauthorized absences
  • Improve labour reporting
  • Reduce payroll inflation
  • Eliminate costs associated with paper timecards
  • Eliminate the risks of employee buddy punching or time fraud 

4. What are the different types of WFM solutions available?
The various aspects of WFM solutions include:
Time and Attendance – labour tracking, data collection, time tracking
Absence Planning – managed leaves, unmanaged leaves, productivity
Workforce Planning – long term forecasting, variance management
Scheduling – optimizing, short term forecasting, shift tracking
5. What are biometrics?
Biometrics is a form of technology that identifies a person according to their unique physical characteristics (i.e. fingerprint or hand geometry). This information is then enrolled into the biometric terminal which recognizes the individual by comparing their unique characteristics with the information previously stored in the system.

6. Are there any privacy issues?
Biometrics do not store images of the hand or fingerprint. The stored employee information is simply a template of their hand or fingerprint, created using a series of algorithms. These templates are meaningless to other devices and cannot be used to "reverse-engineer" and replicate a person’s hand shape or a fingerprint.
7. How easy is it to implement biometric time clock?
The implementation of biometric terminals is as simple as implementing traditional badge or PIN terminals. Enrolling employees into the system is fast and easy, so companies of all different sizes can utilize biometrics.
8. What if my organization has multiple locations?
Companies with multiple locations have the option to install a time clock at each location or implement an employee/manager self-service solution. Either way, all information can be gathered into one centralized system that can be easily managed.
9. What happens if employees forget to punch in or out? 

There are web based solutions available for employees who forget to clock in or out that companies can customize to allow employee or manager access.
10. What is Business Intelligence?
Business Intelligence is a method used to identify and analyze company information which include key trends, gaps, and opportunities. The computer-based system allows businesses to make decisions about their operations to ultimately improve business performance.
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