If you’ve never tracked your time before, you might be amazed to learn that many experienced entrepreneurs consider it the lifeblood of their business. It’s one of the important things they do, as indispensable as accounting or project management or payroll.
Why is it so? Typically, time tracking software touches on some of the most vital areas in your company. Therefore, not only does it help you get paid on time, but it acts like an X-ray vision for your projects. Time tracking software lets you know if things are going to hit their deadlines and budgets, and if your staff is working at a regular peace.
Time tracking is vital for understanding how you spend your time both personally and in business. It’s a valid key to a healthy workflow, insight and productivity. Once you know which task necessitates the most of your time, you can reflect on whether that time was well spent.
1. Improve your team’s productivity
Is your staff indecisive with what task they need completing, or having no sense of urgency when it comes to major projects and deadlines?
That doesn’t actually mean they are trying to overlook their job duties. Most probably, your staff can’t see how pressing the time frames is, or are completely unaware of the amount of work that they need to complete on today’s to-do list.
How much time do you really spend in meetings? Are you spending more time delving through your inbox than tackling your main tasks? Without strong data, it’s almost impossible to make sense of how productive you actually are.
Some people are actually amazed by what their timesheets report them regarding their working habits and those of their colleagues. Naturally, many teams reveal strong inefficiencies. In contrast, when you have the data, you can start improving how your staff works. If those meetings are eating up a lot of your staff or team time, then cut it down on the number of people or number of meetings in each one.
Time tracking doesn’t just help you gain a considerable amount of time from internal processes, but it also empowers valuable employers to improve their workstream.
2. Make your bills and quotes more accurate
Customers often appreciate it when their quotes are precise. When you know precisely how long it will take you to complete a certain task, your quotes will get more spot-on every time. With time tracking software, you can create reports and find out the time it takes to complete a particular task. Doing so, you can combine the times of each job to produce precise quotes.
The same goes for billing. When you know exactly how long it will take you to complete a task, you know precisely how much to bill your clients. A real estimate is just that. Even an extra 20 minutes counts. Every second, every little bit adds up. If you don’t keep track and account for your time, your risk on missing out a considerable deal of income that could have been yours if you had just tracked your time.
3. Managing your staff better
Time tracking software provides a window into how much your team is working. You can see how the entire team or individuals are regularly exceeding their capacity. When that happens, you can lift some weight off their shoulders before they burn out.
That said, when your staff knows that you’re relying upon on-time tracking to maintain a smoother work-life balance, they’re more likely to view Portal for Timesheets as something extremely positive and handy.
Not only that, but you’ll certainly enjoy other advantages of having a happy, inspired and motivated team.
Even if you don’t work at an agency or other client services company, timesheet data can be useful. Oftentimes, individual departments within a larger enterprise keep track of their time in order to push back when work becomes too overwhelming or make the scenario for a new hire. Time tracking software extends the conversation to a more productive space. With unbiased timesheet data to back you up, your team will likely be more receptive to your concerns.
4. Prepare realistic project schedules
That same project list comes in handy when you can estimate how long a project will need to complete. No customers appreciate it when you miss and over-promise your deadline. Setting realistic plans upfront is crucial for maintaining a healthy relationship with your customers.
If you know exactly how long a project will last, you can also do a better job at staffing employees across various projects and planning your team time. Therefore, you’re likely to overbook an important customer just because a project ran over surprisingly. But with a more in place schedule, you can be sure you’re only tackling the work that your staff can handle.
5. Records your work and progress
Timesheet data also creates a record of precisely what your staff worked on which, believe or not, comes in handy in various situations.
Sometimes customers will want a detailed explanation of why a specific project took as long as it did. Normally, customers want to make sure the time they’re paying for is properly used.
With a suitable time tracking software, all you need to do is to create a report, and all the information is there. It will make it easier to have challenging discussions with customers as you can show them specifically how long it takes to do a great job. Moreover, when you work in a field where you could be audited, timesheet data create a significant record of what you did.
Many companies aren’t thinking of all these advantages when they’re seeking a time tracking solution. Typically, there is one tenacious need they’re looking to address, such as billing a new customer. But what they don’t understand is that they aren’t just solving one single issue– they’re actually opening a new window into how their business should really perform.