Time is money, of course, which relates to any project. But time is also the frame on which you stretch the canvas of your project tasks. If you don’t pay attention to the limited time you have, you’re going to make a mess.
Thankfully, there are many software tools that have been developed to keep track of the time you spend on managing a project to a successful end. They offer a wide range of features to help you manage your employees and their time on the job.
But which one is right for you? That’s where things get interesting, because not all timesheet software is created equally. Some do this, but not that, while others do that, but not this. You get the idea. There are many apps that might be great at one thing, but how many apps do you want to use?
There is a timesheet tool out there that will collect all the features you need for project time tracking and have them in one place, giving you a project management timesheet that doesn’t strain your patience. Look for one that can do the following.
Track Time on Tasks
A timesheet isn’t just a way to monitor your employees’ time, so they can get paid at the end of the pay cycle. An employee timesheet is a simplistic way to view what can be a powerful tool in your management of any project.
When your tool is online, and your team updates its tasks, those updates will be reflected on the software, allowing you to track their progress throughout the entire process. Of course, not only is the task being tracked so you can monitor the project’s progress, but their time is being collected by the software.
Now you have a way to see if team members and tasks are moving as per your schedule. And there’s not just one place to view this data. With the right timesheet software, you can track team progress from their task lists, the online Gantt chart or on your real-time dashboard. That’s just one way to improve your time tracking on projects.
Being a cloud-based software is an important distinction that needs a closer look. When your software is locked to your desktop, it’s isolated and lags with the real-time progress of your project. Timesheets must be manually updated and delivered.
That’s a drag, and can slow down you and your team so you’re not working as efficiently as possible. Who has that kind of time to waste on a project?
When your software is online, the updates are instantly reflected on the timesheets, which can then be sent instantly to you for approval. Plus, you can easily see the progress of your team and all the project metrics in one place, on your real-time dashboard.
These easy-to-read graphs and charts are great for a bird’s-eye view of the project, and they can be shared with your team or stakeholders.
Easy Submitting of Timesheets
The online aspect of any robust employee timesheet software impacts all aspects of your project management. With your timesheet software is cloud-based and your team’s tasks are synced with the timesheet tool, the team can easily update their timesheet.
Now the timesheet is a living document that collects all the time a team member has worked on a task. They can preview it simply and submit it for your approval with a click of a button. Then you can look it over and approve, streamlining the process.
That’s what a project management timesheet is all about: making your time work for you. A more efficient process means there is more time to devote to the tasks and any issues that might arise over the life cycle of the project.
Manage Your Team’s Workload
A timesheet tool is a workload management tool. When all your team’s time and tasks are in the software, you have a unique window into the project and the ability to balance the labor across your whole team.
With a color-coded calendar view it just takes a glance to see who is over-allocated and who isn’t. Now you can easily reallocated work easily and reassign without leaving the software. All you need to do is click a dropdown menu and reallocate with a simple click.
Reporting Made Simple
Because you have so much data at your fingertips, it’s easy to create reports. Reports are part of your responsibilities when leading a project. You must keep the stakeholders informed and often need to give specific data to your team when they’re working on a task.
But, of course, the information you want to address your stakeholders with is different than that you would give to a team member. That’s why it’s crucial to have a project time tracking tool that can deliver customized reports.
You can pick only the columns of data that are relevant to the target of your report, whether that is on the project of the progress, workload, availability, task performance and more. These reports can then be generated as print documents or shared online as PDFs, and either as Excel or CSV format.
There’s always a lot to keep track when managing a project, and as the project leader you’re going to find yourself pulled away from one thing to deal with another thing all the time. That can lead to something like your team’s timesheets slipping away through the cracks.
That is not an option, not if you want to have a happy and productive team. Yes, it’s overwhelming, but that’s where a timesheet tool comes to the rescue.
You can automate notifications, so when a task or timesheet is due, you or the team get an email noting the coming deadline. Now you’re not micromanaging, but keeping the schedule in the forefront of everyone’s head.
And There’s More!
There are many ways time management software helps you work smarter. The above are just a few of the ways a powerful time management software can give you the tools to do so much more than just fill in the hours your team has worked on a project.
When you are using the right software, there are benefits that you might not have been aware of. For example, it can help track the billable hours on a project and compare your planned to actual hours worked. Then, on your next project, you have historical data to help you make a better estimate when planning.
Plus, if your timesheet tool is part of a larger project management suite, then you and your team aren’t going to waste time toggling back and forth between apps. That’s not only a time-saver, but it’ll save you undue stress. Projects are stressful enough, why use a tool that doesn’t help alleviate that stress? That’s the right timesheet software.
Is there such a software tool that can handle the management of your timesheets, workload and connect to a larger project management software suite of tools? Yes! ProjectManager.com is a cloud-based program that can do that and so much more. But don’t take our word for it, try it for free with this 30-day trial and see for yourself.