How to Make It Easier for Employees to Track Time

Time tracking is a great way for companies to get control over how the employees and managers are spending their time. It can help the companies to become more profitable by improving efficiency across the board. The right software for time tracking can work with payroll as well, providing an accurate system for payments and accounting, and it can ensure that everyone at the company is honest and accurate with their time. However, one of the big problems that companies have had when it comes to implementing the software is actually getting people to use it.

Some people have trouble with getting used to using the software. Those who are in creative fields may find this especially problematic, because the way they work is not always regimented into concrete tasks. However, they can still track what they are doing and working on; they just need to start. Other people may think that you are using the software to spy on them. That’s not the case either, and you need to be sure they are aware that you are using the software for their benefit as well as yours.

It’s all in the way that you approach the implementation of time tracking. When you do it right, it is easy to get the employees on board with it. Let’s look at some of the things that you will need to consider when you introduce this system to your own company. These should help to make it easier for your employees to adopt.

Keep the System Simple

One reason that many companies fail when they try to add a time tracking system is that they choose a system that’s far more complex than they really need. Simplicity should be one of the top priorities when choosing a system. Neither you nor your employees want to have to fill out long and complicated forms each day when tracking time. You need to make it as simple as possible to access the program. Having a lot of features is nice, but this should never get in the way of ease of use. If the program is too complex, it generally means it will take the employees a long time to fill out. You do not want them to waste even more of the day just filling out their time!

Be a Good Example

You expect your employees to track their time. It is a good idea to show them that you are accountable as well. Fill out the time sheet yourself, and try to convince other managers to do the same. When you do this, you show solidarity with the employees. Even better, you will probably find some time in your day that you are wasting as well. This could end up helping you just as much as your employees.

Use It Daily

Get the employees into the habit of tracking their time expenditure each day, or even at several points during the day for the highest accuracy. You don’t want to let them wait until the end of the week. They may not remember the breakdown of each day, and there’s a chance it will be inaccurate. Some employees might have a few hours, or even a full day out of work for illness, for example. They need to fill in this information at the first opportunity, so that payroll has the correct information.

Additionally, accurate tracking will ensure proper billing, as well as proper estimates for the amount of time it takes to do certain types of projects. This information can help you later when you are trying to come up with estimates for clients.

Understand It Takes Time

When you implement a system such as this within any company, you can expect that it will take some time before it grabs hold and becomes second nature for the employees. They are not accustomed to filling out their time right now, and they might have a few instances where they forget. Don’t punish them for this, but reiterate how important it is to the company.

Also, consider tying in use of the system with a reward or bonus. For example, those who keep accurate time records for the quarter can receive a gift certificate or something similar, such as an hour or two paid time off from work. A good way to get entire teams to remind one another and work together is to have a reward for team wide participation. Consider taking the team that does the best with tracking, and improving their efficiency, out to lunch. This can create some friendly competition amongst different teams at work.

Using positive rather than negative reinforcement generally procures better results for the company.

Talk About the Results

After you add this system, your employees will likely be curious about how it benefited the company, if it did at all. A couple of months after starting the program, you should have enough data to provide them with the results it proffered. Try to keep them up to date with the results every quarter. It gives the employees a better sense of how they are doing and how much more they can improve. Again, this is not a time to be negative. Rather, focus on how well it is working and encourage them to keep it up so they and the company can be even more successful.

The Benefits of Time Tracking

One of the best benefits is that it will help to promote honesty with hours used for work. While most employees are working hard and trying their best, others are not so industrious. They spend time on the web, try to lengthen the time of their lunch and breaks, and ultimately, they try to take advantage of the company and clients. These are not the types of employees you want working with you. Tracking their time forces them to be honest.

Time tracking really will improve the efficiency and the profitability of your company. Your employees just need to be willing to give it a chance. The tips mentioned here should help you.


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Yast is a software company that builds easy-to-use, but powerful software. It's easy to make things complex; it’s incredibly hard to make things easy.

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Yast has to be the easiest to use time tracker, period. Keep up the great work! Glenn Murray - Divine Write

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