In its essence, it is quite an old phenomenon. Time tracking means keeping a record of the time your employees or you spend at work. In today’s digital age, it is modernized and instead of ld-age stop-watches, people now prefer using digital tools. New digital time trackers are mostly created by big agencies.
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What Is a Time Tracker?
A time tracker is a useful tool to keep a record of your time at work. It is used by both independent professionals and employees of large organizations to record their work hours.
There are manual time tracker tools that enable you to click on the ‘play button,’ to start tracking, and there are automatic time tracker tools that enable you to track every activity on your computer without having to click on that ‘play button’. Organizations use the latter to track the work hours of their employees in their organization or remotely. It is also preferred for habit tracking and is recommended by personal development experts.
The idea behind time trackers is more about the elements that guide your success at work. It helps you bill your time more effectively as an employee, or complete your projects well on time as an employer. It ensures both timely delivery and proper management of billable hours. Project managers also get a lot of help from these tools because these tools help them project future timelines more accurately.
Your teammates may waste a ton of time scrolling through social media or on any other activity, but these tools will make them act more professionally because they know they’re being monitored.
Benefits of Time Tracking for Projects and Employees
Using time tracker tools for projects and for employees has numerous benefits. As we have discussed, these tools will help you keep your projects and employees on track. It provides you with a proper framework of productivity measurements and control. This at large, helps your organization achieve its desired results on time. Here’s the list of benefits that using time tracking for projects and employees brings to your organization:
1. Increase Profitability
The first advantage or benefit of using the time tracking software in your organization for your employees, or projects as an employer/freelancer is the increase of profitability. If you look at this from the point of view of a freelancer, you get the opportunity to accurately present your billable hours to your partner. This helps you get what you deserve and saves you from getting underpaid. If you look at this from an organizational perspective or an employer’s perspective, it helps you keep your employees on track and prevent the wasting of time; ultimately, increasing your overall profitability and productivity in your organization.
2. Tracking How the Budget Gets Burned
Another benefit that these tools bring to your business is the accurate measurement of your budget. These tools not only help you track how much time you spent but how much budget you’re burning on your employees/contractors.
3. Transparency in Work Processes
Transparency might be the biggest benefit of using time trackers for your projects and employees. For freelancers, the biggest problem is convincing a client about the required time for a task. For employers, the biggest problem is to stop their employees from wasting time and staying motivated. Using a time tracker solves both of these problems. If you use such tools as a freelancer, you can share your work history with your clients and they will have no reason to object to the billable hours. If you use such tools as an employer for employees, you get to know where and how they spend their time. This will also push them not to waste their time on any leisure activity.
4. Manage Projects Better
Since you’re tracking your time, you can manage multiple projects at once quite easily. Allot time and weights to each task or each project, then just start working. The time tracker will provide you with analytics regarding the time you spent on each project. Everything remains on track.
5. Review Team Performance
If you’re leading a team or managing one, you’re also responsible for leading them to success. Increasing the productivity of your team is only possible when you accurately and regularly review their performance. Using time tracker software provides you with the ability to measure and review your team’s performance.
6. Accurately Report Hours for Compliance
Last but not least, time tracker software helps you stay compliant with the regulations of your employer – both as a freelancer and an employee. Some organizations have a certain requirement for work hours, and you need to meet that requirement each week or each month. Using a time tracker helps you report the hours to the compliance team as accurately as possible.
How to Make Employees Understand the Importance of Time Tracking
Time tracking, with all its benefits, has one flaw for organizations. When you’re leading a team or you’re an employer, using time tracking tools will cause you a problem. Employees will assume that you’re spying on them. And, their privacy concerns are for real. The challenge for you in this situation is to convince your employees that these time tracking tools are good for both parties.
To convince your employees, you can state that it will help them form a more trustworthy and transparent relationship with you, the employer. Not only that but using time tracking software will also enable your employees to manage their time more efficiently. You can easily convince your employees to use time trackers if you communicate their benefits to them.
5 Reasons Why Freelancers Need Time Tracking
If you are a freelancer, time tracking might solve a ton of problems you face daily. And, if you opt for it, it will be as crucial for your future success as your business itself is. As a freelancer, your biggest asset is your time. You get paid by the amount of time you spend on the projects, and using these tools will help you track that time and bill your clients more accurately. Here are the 5 reasons why freelancers need time tracking:
1. Understand Your Limits
The first reason why you need time tracking as a freelancer is that it helps you understand your limits. When working independently, understanding your limits is essential. When you’re getting successful as a freelancer, you overestimate your capabilities and take on tens of projects at once. Yes, it is good that your business is growing, but you need to understand your limits and provide quality work. Using a time tracking tool will help you gauge your capabilities more effectively. It will help you learn how much time you take for a certain task. If you learn that, you’ll be able to better decide which projects to work for and which projects you should not work for.
2. Avoid Multitasking
As a freelancer, you have multiple projects going on at the same time. If you do not take care, you may get stuck multitasking and would spoil the quality of all the deliverables. This is hazardous for an independent professional. Therefore, we recommend time tracking software to help you keep on track with the projects on hand. When you use a time tracker, you use it to bill individual clients at one time, so you only work on their specific project – avoiding all the multitasking stuff you do otherwise.
3. Increase Work Productivity
When you avoid multitasking and understand your limits accurately, you become more productive. Increasing your productivity using project management software for freelancers means increasing your income and earnings. If you are a developer, and it takes you 50-60 hours to develop a simple website, using time trackers and optimizing your projects’ tasks will help you decrease the time and achieve results faster. This way, using time tracker tools also help you increase your work productivity.
4. Track and Manage Projects
As we have discussed that as a freelancer, you’re always involved in more than one project. Keeping track of your projects and managing them becomes difficult as their number increases. If you use time tracking and track how much time each project is taking, you can further optimize your work schedule to manage all the projects at once.
5. Bill Clients More Accurately
Some clients get overbilled, and some clients get underbilled. For the first type of clients, you overbill them due to the technical specifications of the project. But, in the long run, you lose on such clients who think you’ve charged more money than you worked. For the second type of client, you continue getting exploited because you’re charging less than what you should. To solve this problem, you should opt for using time tracker tools to ensure the transparent billing of each client and improve your revenue operations.
How Can You Benefit From Time Tracking?
Using time tracker software as a freelancer has become a necessity in today’s age. Clients want to pay you by the hour, and if you don’t use the time tracking tools, you will either underbill or overbill them. It will spoil your long-term relationships with the clients. Time tracking ensures transparency into your billable hours and also helps you solve your productivity problems. We can say that time tracking tools are the best solution to your budget and productivity problems.
6 Benefits of Time Tracking:
- Increase Profitability
As a freelancer, you get the opportunity to accurately present your billable hours to your partner, which keeps you from getting underpaid. From an organizational perspective or an employer’s perspective, it helps you keep your employees on track and prevent the wasting of time; ultimately, increasing your overall profitability and productivity in your organization.
- Tracking How the Budget Gets Burned:
Accurately measure your budget. These tools not only help you track how much time is getting spent but how much budget you’re burning on your employees/contractors.
- Transparency in Work Processes:
As a freelancer, you can share your work history with your clients and they will have no reason to object to the billable hours. If you use such tools as an employer for employees, you get to know where and how their time is being spent.
- Manage Projects Better:
The time tracker will provide you with analytics regarding the time you spent on each project, which will help you manage multiple projects at once quite easily.
- Review Team Performance:
Using time tracker software provides you with the ability to measure and review your team’s performance.
- Accurately Report Hours for Compliance:
Time tracker software helps you stay compliant with the regulations of your employer – both as a freelancer and an employee. Using a time tracker helps you report the hours to the compliance team as accurately as possible.