There’s nothing worse than buying boxed software and getting back to your office and realizing your computers don’t have the right version of Windows, or are too old, too slow, or need more memory to run what you’ve bought. You might even find that you need a permanent Internet connection to use some software and in the case of employee timeclock software that’s not something that’s always desirable. Being able to try a prospective time clock system BEFORE you buy it will help you determine if the software will run on the old PC you’ve earmarked as a clock in computer. You’ll find out quickly if it’s compatible with the version of Windows, and if your PC hardware will cope with the software. And you’ll find all of this out before you have to spend a cent.
1. To ensure your employees can use the software
It’s important to take advantage of a free time clock software trial to ensure that the employees who use it every day will be able to understand how to clock in and out. Not all software is the same and some is most definitely harder to use than others. With this being the case if your employees don’t know one end of a computer mouse from the other it’s important that they be given the opportunity to see the software that they need to clock in and out of every day. If you’ve got a lot of employees and they are wasting time every day because the software is hard to use then you are just needlessly wasting time and money. Being able to trial your time clock software before purchasing will allow you to discover important usability issues like these before it’s too late.
2. To test the fit through an entire payroll cycle
Reading a glossy software brochure is one thing and watching an online video demonstration of a prospective time clock system is something else. But both are like a picture of a beautiful meal. They give you an appetite but it’s not until you taste that you really know whether a meal (or an employee timeclock) is what you really want. Free time clock trials should give you the opportunity to try (taste) the software through an entire payroll cycle to see if it really does meet your needs. For example, can it cope with employees who forget to clock in or out. Can it generate reports quickly and easily as payroll deadlines approach. And can it save you money while it’s doing all of this for you. Only a time clock trial that runs for at least one full payroll period will tell you if it’s going to meet your needs or not.
3. To see how you live with the time clock software day to day
We’ll indulge in another metaphor here. Downloading any old time clock software, clocking in and out a few times and making a decision in a few minutes is akin to buying a suit by pulling it off of the rack looking at the size and saying to your self that will fit! You don’t know whether it’s a GREAT suit until you get it home, wear it to work, see how it sits on your shoulders and understand what needs adjusting. Sadly you don’t get this chance with a suit, you have to buy it and get it adjusted and then live with it. If your time clock software comes with a free trial you don’t need to buy it to understand how it fits. Your company can live with it day to day and understand how it will fit in your day to day operations and decide if that fit is a good one or a poor one. Given that a good time clock program will become an integral part of your staff management processes it’s essential to ensure that the fit is a GREAT one. So take full advantage of a free time clock trial before you purchase anything.
4. To ensure ongoing reliability and data security
It’s a sad fact of life that a lot of software is shiny and beautiful on the surface but under a thin veneer doesn’t really work too well at all. Often it’s not possible to find usability problems, bugs, or data calculation issues until you’ve used the software for a while. If your prospective employee time clock program offers a free trial then this will allow you find out if any such hidden nasties are lurking just below the surface.
5. To ensure a good fit with your payroll rules and overtime requirements
Our experience suggests that the two most complex parts of any employee time clock system are coping with overtime and dealing with vacation and sick time accruals. Often a workplace has several different sets of accrual and overtime rules that are applied to different employees. It’s not until you get into the guts of a time clock trial that you’ll understand whether it will be able to cope with the way your company accrues leave or pays for vacation. You can imagine the trouble you’d be in if you purchase some software and don’t find out until later that it won’t do proper seventh day California overtime!