What is timesheet management?
Timesheet management gets a bad rap. Employees often bemoan its existence. No one wants to do a slew of paperwork only to “show” they put in a certain amount of work hours – but they’re an essential and very important part of running most businesses.
The most important thing is to choose the best timesheet management tool for your team, set up procedures you can follow on a regular basis, and keep the lines of communication open at all times. Read on below for why timesheet management is a must and what you can glean from it.
When it comes to timesheet management, what is it all about?
In a nutshell, timesheet management is the activity of tracking and evaluating recorded work hours. Calculating payroll for employees or issuing invoices to clients might also be part of this process.
The term “timesheet” comes from the practise of recording employee hours worked on a piece of paper, but this is rarely how it is managed anymore.
Recording time is notoriously disliked among workers, and when managed poorly can be a major source of dissatisfaction for your workforce. They don’t have to be though!
Timesheet management has traditionally been a tool for demonstrating that employees have truly completed their tasks. Things start to go awry however if certain individuals believe that time tracking is more important than job outcomes. A lot of managers have a ‘bums in seats’ mindset and might, for example, challenge an employee that is ten minutes late. That same employee might be the best performer! Timesheet management should not be about using time as the only measurement of productivity, but rather it should be used as a tool for planning resources and forecasting business needs.
It’s not fun to work in environment where you are being watched intently, or where the quality of your work matters less than whether or not you stayed until past your contracted hours or arrived right on the dot for your shift time.
Bad practice equals poor productivity
A poor culture around time tracking does not encourage employees to improve their productivity at work. For the sake of being paid more, why bother looking for a better solution if you can just put more hours on your timesheet?
It can be inaccurate
Older systems rely on memory and most individuals have a terrible memory for how much time they have spent working on a certain project. For this reason, compiling weekly or even monthly timesheets is very unlikely to be accurate.
Time tracking, in general, has minimal impact unless:
Timesheets are filled out on a regular basis and tracked properly. Start/stop trackers that can be activated and deactivated with a single click are common in modern time monitoring software. Some companies sell beacons that keep track of when employees clock in and exit. This can be a good way to get a more accurate view of time.
As a manager, it’s crucial to have a leave management solution alongside the timesheet software. As a manager, you must be able to track both the amount of time an employee spends at work and the amount of time he or she spends away from the office.
Using a scheduling programme that also acts as your team’s schedule provides you an additional benefit of being able to compare the intended working hours with the recorded hours. You may use this information to see how well your project is progressing and whether or not it needs to be changed.
In these cases, timesheet management can be very beneficial, helping to identify how time is actually being spent.