Time Clocks/Stampers Buyer's Guide

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Time Clocks/Stampers Buyer's Guide

What is the Difference Between Time Clocks and Time Stamps?
picture of standard time punch

Time clocks are used for payroll purposes to track hours worked by employees. Typically, the time clock is mounted on the wall and employees sign into the machine at the beginning of their shift. At the end of the day before the employee leaves, they must punch into the clock again and you instantly have the exact hours worked. Many of the machines will even compute total hours worked by each employee.

Time clocks are great for any medium size business to large corporations. They help streamline the payroll process and ensure accurate payroll counts.

picture of standard time stamp

Time Stamps are typically used for document tracking, numbering forms and/or time validation. They come with a variety of features including the ability to print the date, a message, company logos, numbers, etc. All the Widmer Time Stamps that we carry are fully customizable to fit your needs. Simply call for options and inquiries.

First off, you have to decide whether you want a time clock or a time stamp based on the information provided above.

If you are looking for a time clock, you need to ask yourself the following questions:

  • What are your security needs?
  • If you need very high security, you might want to go with a fingerprint time clock. These are the most difficult to forge or tamper. If security is not an issue, a punch card time clock will probably suffice.

  • How many employees will be in the system?

    The machines have various employee capacities. Make sure that the machine can hold records for all your employees. This is in reference to the electronic and fingerprint time clocks.

  • Do you want your time clock to do more than just record the time?
  • Many of the electronic time clocks have the ability to print out reports with everything from clock rules to employee profiles to hours worked. For ultimate control and monitoring there are time clocks that connect to a PC and provide more options and even summarizing reports.

If you are looking for a time stamp, you need to ask yourself the following question:

  • What information would you like your stamper to print?
  • The most common printing options are date, day, number, and time. Customized message plates can be attached to the stampers to print out anything from text to company logos. Also, be sure to take note of how they print. Some of the stampers print the information vertically, others horizontally. In some models, the only difference is the order in which they print the information. For example, the Widmer DN-3 prints the date first and then the number. The ND-3 prints the number first and then the date. Since those are very subtle differences, pay close attention to make sure you are getting what you want. Call us if you are confused or need help finding the right machine for you.

Electronic Time Clock picture of timeclock
These are the most versatile clocks because they record the time, but many also do calculations for you like total hours worked, who???s in, who???s out, and employee profiles. Most of the electronic time clocks have similar features such as LED display for easy reading of the time by all employees and battery backup in case of power failure.


Fingerprint Time Clock
picture of fingerprint time clock
These are the highest security time clocks. They scan the employee???s fingerprint so that someone else cannot punch in for them.

Punch card Time Clock picture of time punch

These are basic time clocks. You slip the punch card into the slot and the time is recorded on the card. They provide perfect records of attendance at an affordable price.

Time/Date Stamper

As mentioned above, time/date stampers are mainly used for document tracking, numbering forms and/or time validation. They come with a variety of features including the ability to print the date, a message, company logos, numbers, etc.


  • Adjustable Platform: The platform right under the stamper can be raised and lowered to accommodate differences in document thickness
  • Atomic Clock: When there are several terminal/stations involved in a time management system, the ???atomic clock??? is the head clock that all other stations are synchronized to
  • Die: An engraved stamp used in embossing a design or letter on paper
  • Employee Badges: an ID card with a magnetic strip that is slid through the time clock to replace the function of a punch card. These are more valuable than time cards because they are more durable and the information gets stored to a computer backup immediately. A punch card can always be stolen or misplaced. Badges are also harder to forge than punch cards
  • Employee Capacity: This is the number of employee records that the machine can store
  • Message plates: These are engraved brass templates that are customized with whatever you want (signature, message, company logo, seal, etc.) to print
  • Stamp blow: Another term for stamp pressure. Increasing the stamp blow will allow you to penetrate thicker materials such as multi-page carbonized forms
 
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