For many people, a new year means a new you. Use this January's new year timing as to set the stage all year for better time tracking.
A Familiar Challenge
You have probably encountered less than accurate time sheets. It's a familiar challenge, stemming from a familiar scenario. How many of us work on projects for more or less than the budgeted time? Spending less time on a project than needed sounds great, but when the time comes to enter your timesheet for myriad projects, you just enter the time that had been budgeted. This throws accounting off, and the only way to mitigate the occurrence of wrong time sheets seems to be getting people to record their hours in real time. What's a manager to do?
Three Things Your Time Tracking Should Do
Time tracking doesn't have to be a headache. You don't have to go to the trouble of holding end-of-week meetings or monthly happy hours to get people tracking time regularly. However you track time, you should aim for three best practices:
- Real-time tracking
- Single entry (that ripples through all relevant systems)
- Discrepancy checks between actual and projected time
With these practices in place, your world begins to look different. Your teams track time regularly, ideally daily. Your time entry-system takes their entries and pushes this information seamlessly to other systems, like your accounting system, thanks to integrations. At any point in a project, you should be able to see how much time has been spent on individual tasks. You can avoid over- or under-billing clients on projects. In addition, you can see where your resources are spending most of their time. You may even begin to assess if you can better match skills to tasks. You will