Paychex adds iris scanning time clock to HCM system

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HR managers can now keep an eye on employees’ hours with a new iris scanning feature from Paychex, in what the company claims is the fastest and most accurate time product on the market.

The InVision Iris Time Clock, which uses biometric iris screening to clock employees in and out of work, is the latest addition to the Paychex Flex HCM system.

In a fraction of a second, the iris scanning device records 240 unique features in an employee’s eye and creates a binary code to confirm that an employee — not their coworker — is clocking in or out. The string of numbers, rather than an image, makes sure that no personal identifiable information is running through the time clock – an important security feature. If companies use Paychex Flex as its HCM system, the time clock will automate with payroll.

“We wanted something that was more secure and reliable with less of a failure rate,” says Josh Mazza, product manager for time and attendance at Paychex. “It’s virtually impossible to game the system.”

The module, which can be purchased independently or as one of the stacks within the HCM system, costs $4 per employee per month, Mazza says. There also is a $150 monthly fee for the iris scanning device, and companies tend to require one or two devices per location, he says.

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Paychex claims that iris recognition technology, prior to its product, was quite expensive.

“We’re opening it up to a set of customers where this really fits in an affordable way,” Mazza says.

It supports up to 50,000 employees, Mazza says, noting that few of their clients are bigger than that.

For industries like construction and healthcare, where employees are likely to have dirty hands or wear gloves, the iris scanning is more effective than a fingerprint scan, says Tom Walsh, founder and managing partner of healthcare information security firm tw-Security.

“It’s one of the most reliable biometrics,” he says. “When you talk about biometrics with a fingerprint, your issue there is infection control. Infection control people don’t want people swiping fingerprints.”

However, Walsh notes that regardless of which time clock system an employer uses, it still serves as an audit; a nurse will need to fill out patient notes and a janitor will still be responsible to clean an area.

“If someone [in the system] has shown they were there on a particular day, but they were absent, I would see that as fraud,” he says.

Paychex declined to name how many employers have signed on to use the product.

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