It appears at first glance that using a time clock software package like Time Clock MTS with magnetic swipe cards or using it with a biometric finger scanner similar to the one shown above are two very different methods to tracking employee attendance. But, In my opinion, they are remarkably similar and really only differ in one key area. Swipe card time clock systems (or for that matter PIN based systems or barcode based systems) rely on each employee having a unique token to identify themselves. Obviously in the case of swipe card and barcode systems the unique employee identifier is encoded on the card or in the barcode. When employees use a PIN the PIN itself identifies the employee. A biometric time clock system has a unique identifier too, some biometric feature of the employee themselves. This could be a voice, a facial pattern or feature, an iris pattern, or most commonly a fingerprint.
It seems to me that the fundamental difference between a time clock system that uses a PIN, swipe card, or barcode to identify an employee and one that uses a biometric feature to identify an employee is the assurance that the actual employee is presenting the unique identifier or someone else is. Obviously magnetic cards and barcodes can be shared between employees and employee PINs can be passed on by word of mouth. Conversely, properly selected biometric identifiers are much, much harder to share between employees. The obvious conclusion is that a biometric time clock system gives employers a much greater assurance that the time clock data they are collecting is a true and valid reflection of actual employee attendance.
Time Clock MTS supported Digital Persona 4500 USB finger scanners are available from Amazon at under $100 and a single computer license of Time Clock MTS is just $99 (US). This affordable combination allows any small business to setup a biometric time clock solution for minimal cost, a price you’d probably recoup in just a few weeks of payroll savings.