Every so often, we get questions about customers using payphones to clock into the Chronotek system. Some industries only have access to payphones at their job sites, and ask us about using them with Chronotek. While we are always looking to help our customers make Chronotek as efficient and convenient to use as possible, unfortunately, a relic of telecommunications legislation makes using payphones extremely difficult.
In 1996, Congress passed the Telecommunications Act. Part of this law allowed payphone providers to charge 1-800 numbers a “market rate” for calls made from their payphones. What this means is that anytime Chronotek received a call from a payphone, the phone company charged us $0.62. Because we only charge $0.12 a call from our customers, these phone company charges meant that we would lose $0.50 every time someone calls to clock in using a payphone.
The Telecommunications Act did allow the operators of 1-800 numbers to block all calls from payphones, to protect themselves from these $0.62 charges. This means that we pay a small monthly fee to prevent all incoming payphone calls.
As you can imagine, this has been the source of some frustration for us. We have confirmed an alternative method for customers who only have access to payphones at their job sites. If you think this might describe your company, please contact us and our Support Team will be happy to assist you with your specific needs.