It is a good practice in many 'single shift' organizations to have all employees (including managers) reporting in time in the morning, so that managers can take stock of available resources, schedule work & allocate tasks. In such a scenario, there is no fixed time for the Managers to call off the day, though their subordinates (at workers level) break off at a fixed timing (unless some are required to work on a paid overtime basis). The point to observe here is that there is no concept of overtime for managers. But if the managers are not punctual in the morning, there is an apparent delay in the commencement of work in that department.
To that extent, your principal office at Singapore seem justified in asking all managers to report in time. And to introduce this culture of punctuality, your Head of Indian operations (and not the HR) has to drive this change.

From India, Delhi
Dear Arlene,

When information keeps coming in dribs and drabs, it is difficult keep track without going back and forth. So, let me try and summarize your problem before trying to find a solution.

You work for a company which has its HQ in Singapore. The normal working hours are 9am till 6pm. There are 5 departmental managers (HR Manager, Purchasing & Logistics Manager, Sales & Marketing Manager, Technical/Operations Manager and Finance Manager) who habitually come late (between 9am and 10am). They stay behind till 10pm. Workers do get paid overtime and they do work late. However, managers are not paid over time money. Your Principal office has asked you to give your proposal to ensure that managers come on time to work, irrespective of whether they work more than 8 hours and stay late.

Let me ask a few more questions to get a clear picture of the problem. What is your role, as you say even the HR Manager comes late? You say that managers give unpredictable traffic as the reason for their late coming? Have you asked them does that not apply to their workers, who come on time? Or do the workers also come late? If so, what actions do you take?

Finally, if managers are staying late every day, they can plan for their following days work and leave instructions and go, so that even if they do not turn up for work (for whatever reason) the work will go on.

From United Kingdom
Hi Simhan,
I'm totally agreed on what you said.
To answer your questions, I'm Executive Assistant, HQ in Singapore ask me to monitor the attendance of all the Managers. Yes, even the HR Manager arrived late in the office. HR already implemented Tardiness Policy for the staff with corresponding penalties, it's all clear and accepted by the whole organization. However, here in the Philippines it's a common practice among some organizations that Managers has flex time -schedule.

From Philippines, Quezon City
Dear Arlene, it's all a question of give and take. If the organization is flexible, it gets more out of managers and staff than if it is rigid. Let me give an example from my knowledge. There are two types of colleges: one college insists that all lectures come on time, irrespective of whether they have classes or not, the other says that staff have to attend all meetings and make sure that students' demands are met. In the former, staff do not bother to keep in touch with students beyond working hours. In the latter, lecturers keep in touch with students by email and other media and respond to their queries even when on holidays. Which sort of an institution would a student get maximum benefit?
That's why may companies have Flexible Working times with core working hours. Please also read Business leaders see benefits of flexible working - May be you can gently prod your Principal Company managers also read and digest the contents.

From United Kingdom

Department Managers are enough educated to know the importance of punctuality and it can not be taught to them but they need to realize its importance.....better if you conduct the meeting and raise this point or a circulate a email from the Senior/ Heads regarding this issue to the managers.
From India, Lucknow

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