Why is a Facial Recognition Time Clock Essential for Small Businesses?

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A facial recognition time clock is no longer a luxury. Advanced biometric clocks are a must-have for today’s workplaces. A facial recognition time clock is both a health and safety device and the best technology for tracking employee time. It solves a multitude of problems employers are facing as they bring employees back to the office – and try to keep them safe.

What is a facial recognition time clock?

facial recognition timeclocks A facial recognition time clock is a hardware clock that tracks employee time. The employee stands in front of the clock and faces the scanner. The time clock identifies the employee by scanning their face and measuring key landmarks between facial features.

When the employee’s identity is authenticated, the time clock records their clock-in for the shift. The timestamp is then sent to the time and attendance software where time worked is tracked on digital timecards, along with PTO accruals.

The Advantages of Facial Recognition Time Clocks

Quick: Touchless identification prevents bottlenecks at shift changes because the clock identifies the employee in less than a second. Slow clock-in lines reduce productivity. If each employee in a 20-person crew takes 30 seconds to punch in, that’s 50 minutes of wasted work time per week, or over three hours every month.

Accurate. A facial recognition clock identifies faces with near 100% accuracy.

Works across the broadest range of environments and conditions. Modern face recognition technology can match an employee’s face in low light conditions or if the employee is wearing a mask. With touchless authentication, employees don’t have to remove gloves and the clock isn’t affected by dusty or dirty conditions. This versatility makes it ideal for industrial, hospitality, health care, construction and manufacturing workspaces.

Works for a wide range of skin tones, facial features, and heights. Facial characteristics are a unique and reliable identifier, regardless of age, complexion or ethnicity.

No lost key cards, fobs or passwords. Employees forget passwords and lose prox cards. To state the obvious, they can’t forget to bring their face to work.

Prevents buddy punching as it is virtually impossible to fool. When a Los Angeles restaurant adopted a face recognition clock, their total labor costs dropped the following pay period. As it turns out, two employees had been buddy punching for each other to pad their paychecks. With the new biometric clock, the jig was up.

Controls access in secure environments. A biometric time clock is essential for highly secure workspaces.

Common Questions About Facial Recognition Time Clocks

Is it better than a finger scan time clock? biometric fingerprint reader

Although finger scanning time clocks are notably more secure than many other options on the market, there are still some drawbacks that a time clock with facial recognition can mitigate. If employees are wearing gloves, they have to take them off which slows down the clock-in process. Additionally, there is a possibility finger scanners could prove unreliable in dusty and dirty environments. Like all things in business, assessing your work environment is key to making a decision on what technology suits your business best.

Is it better than an iris scanner?

Iris scanners are slow and tedious. Employees must stand within a few inches, almost touching the device. Thus, they are less hygienic than facial recognition clocks.

Bonus: Employee Health and Safety With Temperature Monitoring

One of the newest additions to biometric clocks is a thermal scanner for temperature checks. An employee time clock with a thermal scanner detects their temperature while they are clocking in. This has been helpful in protecting workplaces from the spread of illness. If a time clock detects an elevated temperature, before the employee enters the workspace, it lowers the risk of an outbreak.

When does a facial recognition time clock make the most sense?

Employers in many industries are using facial recognition biometrics to better manage their workforces. Let’s look at the most common:

Food and Beverage. These businesses often have multiple shifts of varying lengths. In addition, the employee clock-in area is often a small space that gets crowded quickly if there’s a hold-up during shift changes. A facial recognition clock can promote order and efficiency for multiple teams and job roles.

Manufacturing. With a facial recognition clock, manufacturing employees don’t need to remove gloves or carry a prox card or fob. Split-second identify verification allows employees to get to their work stations without delay.

Health Care. Facial recognition is quick and sanitary. Advanced timekeeping software synced to a face recognition clock can track multiple job roles, shift differentials and multiple pay rates.

Industrial. Facial identification works better than finger or iris scans in dirty, dusty or wet work environments – and employees don’t need to remove their gloves.

Hospitality. Did you know that making beds, and working with cleaning solutions can alter the skin on the fingertips? Many hotel employers have struggled with finger-based scanning clocks due to this reason. A facial recognition clock solves the problem of worn fingertips while providing a secure clocking method for largely unsupervised teams.

Construction. This is another industry with job tasks that can cause changes to the fingertip skin. Think brick laying, cement work and framing. Worksites can also be dirty, dusty and wet. With facial recognition, employees don’t need to remove gloves or dig in their pocket for a fob or prox card.


thermal and facial recognition time clock


Introducing Vision Employee Time Clock!

We are excited to announce that our new Vision facial recognition clock is now available for our direct customers and reseller partners!

The newest of our scanning time clocks, Vision, clocks employees in/out with facial authentication and minimal touch. Vision integrates with WorkforceHub, our best-in-class small business HR solution.


Swipeclock Vision+ Biometric Employee Time Clock


Vision+ With Thermal Temperature Scanner

The second clock in our Vision series is the Vision+. Vision+ has all the features of Vision with the addition of a thermal scanner to screen employees for elevated temperature. And did we mention that it tracks time? Vision+ records punches, calculates time for payroll, tracks meals, breaks and PTO, and enforces schedules. Pair Vision+ with WorkforceHub workforce management software.

Vision & Vision+

The Vision series provides comprehensive time tracking, security, and safety features:

  • Minimal-touch and easily sanitized
  • Rapid employee verification with near 100% accuracy
  • Can’t be fooled by a photo like some clocks
  • Adapts to low light environments
  • Vision+ has a multi-point Infrared Body Temperature Scanner accurate within 0.3 degrees

Because employee safety is paramount, businesses need a time clock that is easy to use and provides the security and reliability of authentication for clocking employees in and out. Vision with facial detection has raised the bar on workplace hygiene by offering operation that’s faster than any other method. With this clock, companies will be able to keep their workforces safe without losing the reliability of previous clocks. Coleman Barney, CEO of Swipeclock.

Learn more about facial recognition time clocks

Would you like more information about the ideal facial recognition time clock and time clock software for small businesses? Visit WorkforceHub.

Updated October 13, 2022. Originally published May 10, 2021.

Simplify HR management today.

Simplify HR management today.

Photo by Jason Goodman

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