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Biometric Time Attendance Systems

Biometric time and attendance systems can include a range of physiological recognition methods to increase security and keep track of your employees. In a matter of seconds, a member of staff can be recognised, clocked in or out, and their on-site whereabouts verified.

There are 2 basic purposes for the use of biometric recognition: verification and identification. In the case of time and attendance software, it is likely that only verification will be required. An employee is matched against the relative record within the HR database, and their presence on-site is recorded by the system.

So what types of biometric recognition are available to businesses in the UK, and how does each type work in the context of time and attendance?

Face recognition

Face recognition software works by identifying individual facial characteristics such as the amount of space between the eyes, position of the nose, cheekbones and jaw line. Widely used for security purposes, its adaptability to clocking in and out processes makes it a good choice for workforce time-keeping and attendance management.

Recognition takes place very quickly, usually within a couple of seconds, and this type of biometric system is more hygienic than fingerprint and hand scanners.

Fingerprint recognition

This is the most common type of biometric system, and fingerprint scanners are now common in many walks of life. A fingerprint scanner will compare the ridges and furrows present on an individual’s fingertip to their record in a database, and verification/identification takes place within a few seconds. Ease of use and fast recognition makes this type of biometric software popular with all sizes of business.

Retina and iris scanning

Blood vessels at the back of the retina are unique to each individual, and a retina or iris scan will take around 15 seconds to complete. Iris recognition is generally considered to be the most accurate method of verifying an individual, although as a concept, it is relatively new. Blind people can use this technology as it is not sight-dependent. Even identical twins do not have the same iris 'pattern'.

Voice recognition

Voice recognition is occasionally used for workforce management, but performance of these systems can be hit and miss, depending on the audio quality. The user listens to a series of words or numbers and then has to repeat it. An individual’s acoustic patterns are unique, and these are picked up by the voice recognition software along with any present dialect or accent.

Hand geometry recognition

This type of biometric recognition is commonly used in industry, where working conditions are unclean or harsh. Features such as the length of fingers and width of the hand are used to identify an individual, and although hand geometry is not as unique as fingerprints, this type of biometric system is a popular choice for time and attendance software in some industries.

Hand scanners work by taking a picture of a hand after it is placed on a flat surface, with fingers aligned correctly. The resolution of each scanner determines the detail picked up, with 100dpi being low resolution and 400 dpi, high resolution. This type of biometric device is commonly used for identity verification, and is popular for time and attendance purposes.

Further Options

If you are looking for a simpler time and attendance solution, there are many other methods to explore, with a range of capabilities and features.

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