What Access Control Systems Can Be Used As A Time Clock For Payroll Purposes?

I was asked to spec out a access control system that be used as a time clock for payrol purposes. Any suggestions?


If I were you I would be very careful about using access control platforms for true time-and-attendance.

If your customer is simply looking for an electronic punchclock (punch in-punch out; make a report on the time spent onsite), then an access control system with a time-and-attendance module will be fine.

but if your customer has more complex requirements then they would need a full time-and-attendance package from a company that specializes in such products.

some "complex requirements" you need to be wary of:

-calculating total pay and not just time (time x hourly rate)

- overtime pay (when is time-and-a-half or double time calculated)?

- integrating to payroll system

- producing the pay

- integrating to HR system

-union rules

- rotating shifts, overnight shifts, split shifts, minimum shifts

- early entry, late leaving (do you pay the extra 5 minutes worked at the end of a shift or the 10 minutes early at the beginning of a shift?)

- different rules for different departments (union , non union, management, etc...)

- and many many more...

there's a reason why some payroll software packages are $25,000 when the T&A module in an access control system is only $2,000... You can get into big trouble with the customer if the needs are not clearly defined up front and a package that clearly meets those needs is not chosen. I haven't seen many access control T&A modules that match a true T&A stand-alome software

Mark brings up interesting points!

With his warnings considered, I have found T&A a popular feature for many small/medium users. In many cases, access reports can be integrated with payroll management systems with a text file import. Pretty straightforward.

Also, keeping the access clock system synced with the 'official' clock used by company becomes critical. Even a few seconds of drift between systems can be a big problem.

For best results, the access system clock should become the 'official' clock. There are PoE powered clocks that aren't really clocks, but are 'time displays' that sync up with an NTP server or access server clock.

I'm a Paxton employee: Paxton has a fully integrated, no-cost, pretty complete, Time & Attendance package built into the access control system, with exporting to payroll processing. There is also a simple, graphical snap-shot sister program, called Timeline. You can use any card readers for clocking in & out, connecting to the existing controller ports. You'll need to provide a separate, real-time clock.

Caution is a good statement ..... just read this small blog on one case and see how picky it can be. In this instance the company won, but it cost them a lot to litigate. Make sure you meet the local labor requirements. It's more than just providing the start and end time in some localities.


GeoVision has a very nice Time & Attendance Software Module - and Its included with the AS-Manager Software (Which is also free). We've successfully gotten it to integrate with quickbooks, sage, and other accounting platforms.

The short answer is: All of them. The long answer is: The question makes it difficult to provide an adequate answer.

A creative systems engineer on the manufacturer side or integrator SE/tech can figure out how to make just about anything work together.

The question would be more helpful to someone trying to think of solutions if it was asked like this: What would you your advice for a cost-effective solution that integrates our time and attendance with access control? Our requirements are that the time and attendance be able to (xyz) in conjunction with the access control system. We currently have (brand/model/version or no) access control and (brand/model/version or no) time and attendance systems.

The reason the question is difficult to answer is because most industry professionals will want to look at the whole situation, because it's really hard to blindly offer advice without knowing what existing infrastructure exists. Someone could say, "Oh you should do (whatever).." and it's the completely wrong advice based on your requirements and infrastructure.

I went to grad school for IT ninjary, and one thing that became very important in case studies and in real life after, was a requirements and capabilities study (known by many different names and done by many different techniques). For any of us to provide a valid answer we really need to understand both requirements and capabilities.

If you need further advice, my billable consulting rate is... just kidding. Happy to help. Just... define your question a little more.