How to Track Time in Construction

How to Track Time in Construction?
By Hayley Phillips | 8 minute read | 815 Views

Time is money. It might sound cliche but there’s a reason the phrase has stood the test of time-- it’s true.

Accurate construction time tracking boosts benefits for both employees and business owners.

Accurate time recording means employees are compensated fairly for time spent on the job, and business owners see their bottom lines boost when timekeeping errors are eliminated. 

Learn How to Avoid Delays in Construction Through Instant Progress Reporting

What are the benefits of construction time tracking?

But what if your business doesn’t always have employees in one location? 

Time tracking for construction companies can get tricky when work crews are spread far and wide across various job sites. How can you make sure that your time tracking for construction workers is accurate when the employees are scattered across job sites? 

A good employee time tracker in the construction field will not just track working hours, but also make sure that time is used productively and keeps projects on schedule. Studies show that approximately 61% of construction jobs are behind schedule. The ability to accurately track how time is spent is critical to staying on schedule.

With so many options in the age of automation, how do you know what time tracking method is the right choice? We did the work so that you don’t have to-- here are seven ways to nail it when it comes to construction timekeeping.

How to track employee hours in construction?

Manual Time Tracking

Innovation is everywhere. But before diving into the pool of time tracking software, don’t forget to consider the tried and true methods of manual time tracking-- there’s a reason they’re still around after all this time!

Pen and paper

When all else fails, go back to the basics. Tried and true, using pen and paper to make timesheets is the most basic way to track time. It’s simple and doesn’t require a learning curve. The problem lies in the fact that inaccuracies are pretty much guaranteed.

Whether employees round up their time, try to hide when they’ve arrived late, or just forget to sign in, pen and paper timesheets are destined to be inaccurate. On top of that, they can eat up a lot of management’s time. Fixing timesheet errors and logging employee hours can add up to a lot of work, using time that could be used more productively. 

Time clocks

Time clocks are the electronic answer to pen and paper timesheets. They record when employees arrive and leave, but still, require a manual clocking in. While they’re certainly a step up from using pen and paper, room for error still exists, and management will still find themselves going into the system to manually fix any missed punch-ins or forgotten punch-outs. 

How to Track Time in Construction?

Another issue business owners tend to face with time clocks is buddy punching-- when an employee punches in for a coworker who might be running late, or punches them out when they’ve left early. For businesses with hourly employees, this means employees are getting paid for time not worked. This can impact the productivity of your business as a whole.


Similar to punching in on a timeclock, badges and IDs can be used to swipe into work. This can be useful if you need to know where employees are at what time, and can also help avoid the issue of buddy punching by requiring the employee’s badge or ID to clock in instead of using a punch-in number. 

 This can be useful in construction businesses when employees are spread across various job sites. Having badges to swipe in when employees arrive at work can be a good way to keep track of who is working where.

Manual time tracking is still widely used but can come with drawbacks and disadvantages. Remember, accuracy is key to saving money and making sure your business is following all labor rules and regulations. Manual time tracking can leave plenty of room for error and end up hurting productivity levels when management is left fixing hours and making sure that hours logged are correct.

Automated Software Time Tracking

The whole purpose of efficient time tracking is to have a streamlined payroll process and valuable insight into job costing metrics. The best crews in the construction industry are those that use the latest innovations to rise above their competitors. 

Automation has given us time tracking software designed to close loopholes and reduce the margin of error typically found in manual time tracking methods. With automated software, management can be hands-off and focus on driving the business forward instead of calculating hours and fixing missed punches.

Mobile Time Tracking

Virtually everyone these days has a smartphone. When you have teams working on various job sites, you need a way to keep track of where they are and what they’re doing. Mobile time tracking harnesses the power of the cloud and turns your employees’ mobile phones into tools for clocking in and out of work. 

Construction and field service businesses often have employees scattered far and wide. Cloud-based employee time tracking app means no matter where your employees are scheduled to report, they’ll have the ability to clock in and report their location and access their job site from the cloud. 

 It also allows you to view their location in real-time and monitor what your workers are doing. Knowing what is going on at job sites can help you accurately gauge labor costs and find ways to work more efficiently. 

Mobile time tracking also incorporates GPS and Geofencing to keep track of employees while they’re on the job. 

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Geofencing: It’s an unseen virtual boundary line that defines a specific area. The parameters of the geofence can be set by management. Time tracking software uses geofencing to block employees from clocking in or out when they aren’t inside the boundaries of the geofenced area.

 GPS tracking: Similar to geofence tracking, it is also a great way to keep tabs on employees working on different job sites. Time tracking software that uses GPS tracking keeps track of employees by timestamping their time and location. 

 When an employee clocks in, the stamp shows their exact location at the time they clocked in. If the employee isn’t physically on the job site, the tracker can block them from clocking in until they’ve arrived at the job site. 

Both GPS and Geofencing features are great tools for gauging how time is spent on the job and ensure that time isn’t being wasted. 

Clockshark provides an all in one solution

For field service and construction companies, ClockShark’s top-rated cloud-based mobile time clock app makes efficient time tracking a breeze.

 Everything you need is at your fingertips. The mobile app allows you to track time, schedule your employees, and follow their locations with GPS no matter where they are. It’s also fully customizable, allowing you to categorize your job costs in a user-friendly dashboard.

ClockShark takes the pain out of payroll and invoicing while maintaining accuracy in tracking. It’s cloud-based, so you and your employees have access to schedules and job information anywhere you go.

 ClockShark’s GPSFence™ Time Tracking Technology uses geofences to place boundaries around job sites and service locations. It can detect these boundaries and send notifications when they’re crossed. You can even remind your employees to clock in when they get to a job or notify you if they leave the geofence boundaries. This means management isn’t left manually fixing missed clock-ins. When’s the last time your pen and paper timesheet did that?

How to Track Time in Construction?

Do you have employees still clinging to outdated flip phones? ClockShark has you covered. The CrewClock feature lets a supervisor or foreman punch in for employees without smartphones. 


 When you’re spending less time pushing paper and wrestling with manual time tracking, you’re spending more time on the things that matter. Step into the future and streamline your construction time tracking with software that does the heavy lifting for you.

ClockShark’s time tracking software is the easy solution to streamlining employee time tracking for your construction business. Cost-effective and efficient, it helps save money and increase productivity. See for yourself-- try ClockShark for free today!

Save Time and Money with ClockShark
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