How to Enhance Your Outlook with a Calendar Timesheet

How to Enhance Your Outlook with a Calendar Timesheet
How to Enhance Your Outlook with a Calendar Timesheet

Outlook has been paving the way for how people manage their businesses and succeed, but do you know how you can make it even more efficient? Introducing the right tools for your Outlook calendar not only makes your life easier but ensures that your business runs smoother than ever. Adding a calendar timesheet solution is an easy way for you and your employees to stay at the top of your game!

By incorporating a time-tracking add-in, you can upgrade your Outlook Calendar to help you monitor activities with clients as well as easily keep track of who is working on what.

With a time-tracking feature added to your calendar, you can 

  • See how much time is spent on different projects and activities
  • Add hourly expenses and rates to your time entries 
  • Easily access it through your smartphone 
  • Share data with other systems like ERP or Excel 

What is Time Tracking and Why Do You Need It?

So now that you are seriously thinking of getting this add-in, you might be wondering how time tracking works. By adding a time tracker to your Microsoft Outlook, you can not only analyze time and manage projects, but also edit past entries, review calendar timesheets, and export reports. 

Basically, timesheet reports are commonly generated while keeping in mind the amount of time-track data that has been collected over a specified time. They summarize your data from that period, along with a grouped time-track data that is submitted by your employees for any work assignment, project, or client. They also help business owners and managers by improving their workflow and providing them with valuable business insights. 

Depending on how your data is grouped and summarized, calendar timesheets reveal different types and variety of figures and dynamics. They also allow any identification of performance issues and show you clearly where your company needs to improve. You can compare identical time reports for a variety of periods to help you see whether the measures you took have been efficient, and then evaluate the outcome. You can then, based on these recurring reports, take decisions and further action to improve the results.

Companies utilize data collected with the help of time reporting for customer billing, and integrate such information in their business decisions and workflows. This can be one of the ways that you use a calendar timesheet, but it is certainly not the only way. Running reports on time-based cost and revenue along with time data can not only help gain insight into what can be improved, but also what needs urgent attention and how you can make your workflow as efficient as possible. 

What Can a Calendar Timesheet Do for You?

For business owners and managers, time-tracking is a source of vital information about work management, business processes, and workflow. They allow you to identify any weaknesses or gaps in your data, help your estimates get better, and optimize your work procedures. Whether you are a self-employed individual or a regular office employee, most people use an Outlook calendar, which means that you can easily incorporate time-tracking into your calendar. It can prove to be an efficient and effective tool for improving time management and productivity at the workplace. Here are some of the ways you can benefit from using time tracking software along with your Outlook:

  • Report time anytime from your Microsoft Outlook: with a time-tracking add-in, you are adding to your calendar extra advantages and thus building on existing infrastructure. The biggest advantage you get is that your users do not have to use a separate application to report their time and there is no hassle for initial training to get them started. It is as simple as adding extra information to your appointment on your existing MS Outlook calendar and voila! You are done! Your appointment can now work as a timesheet, enabling your employees to submit it and for you to approve it.
  • Improve your estimates and quotes for the better: Being able to produce accurate quotes always helps in getting you off on the right foot with clients. A calendar timesheet solution helps you keep accurate records on how long it took you to do a specific job, making it easier for you to adjust schedules, and at the same time improve your quotes. Using a time-tracking software that is integrated into your Outlook allows you to run reports on different tasks and the time taken for your project teams to complete them. This way, the improvement to your quotes can be implemented immediately and will reflect in your records!
  • You will be better able to prioritize projects: With a good calendar timesheet add-in, you can use the calendar, staff allocation, milestones and features to make adjustments to whatever schedule suits your business best. This ensures that you can easily shift deadlines for high-yield projects while also re-allocating resources. Through this, you can have higher level of accountability and visibility, all in one neat system because your team members can see the exact hours spent on each step of a project along with where they need to do the most amount of work. With time tracking integrated with your Outlook calendar, you can make intelligent decisions concerning your company, like how you monitor your employee performance, how you assign resources for your next project and even how you schedule your entire day!
  • Focus on high-yield projects: By using a calendar timesheet, you can utilize the features to report on the data collected. You gain better access to huge data resources detailing information about your partners, clients, staff, profits, and activities. You can then incorporate this data to measure the progress of your goals and focus on strategic directions. Good time-tracking software with calendar timesheet add-in capabilities provides you with the added benefit of being aligned with all of your digital tools that you already use on a daily basis, so you always know what to prioritize first.  
  • You get the upper hand when you decide to sell your business: If you ever decide to sell your business, you can easily impress potential buyers with the data you collected, stored and organized using a calendar timesheet. Doing so will not only prove extremely valuable both for them and you, but it will also show them that you have a professional and systematic business model. Your time tracking data will highlight your reputation for accuracy by presenting at-a-glance information so that potential buyers know exactly what they can expect from the business and the team, thus improving your chances for obtaining a better bargain. 
  • Helps you identify and resolve areas of improvement: When you are running a productivity audit to devise a new improvement strategy, one of the things that you need to identify are tasks and areas which take up the biggest chunk of the company’s time to complete. If you find every member of your team struggling to finish a task within the time assigned, it might be pointing to a process that needs changing. This can only be possible if you use time tracking to point out where to improve. 
  • Get professional: Most clients love to ask questions. Who is working right now on this stage of the project? What is the status of the project? Where in the process are we so far? By providing your client a clear picture of how much time is being spent and how far along in the project you are (which can be obtained via your calendar timesheets), you can easily provide them with the information they need and at the same time show them how professional you are.
  • Reward excellence: Usually, many of the staff members, specifically those not very savvy with time tracking, end up worrying that putting in their hours will make them look like they are slacking off. But that is not the case; it is actually the complete opposite! An accurate log of their hours worked informs you as a business manager when good work is being done and when to reward it accordingly.

You can see at a glance who is performing consistently above their targets, and when to give them a promotion. Similarly, you can incentivize your employees to challenge themselves with friendly competition amongst them. This can make employees more productive and satisfied with the job that they do. 

Optimize Your Business for the Better

Using a time-tracker along with the Outlook Calendar has proven to be an efficient tool for project and team-based management. Because each project and each team works differently to evaluate their possible issues and progress, any timesheet add-in that you use needs to be flexible and configurable enough for it to be adapted to your particular needs. This is especially true for non-trivial work assignments and frequently-shifting environments.

When choosing the right time reporting tool, you have to make sure that it includes flexible reporting modules that allow you to run reports on various metrics. This will help you stay informed in setting realistic goals for your team and future projects, check up on your team’s progress, and deal with changes in estimates and deadlines when necessary. Although some businesses choose not to track their time, stating it as a headache and a deterrent to focus and creativity, nothing can be farther away from the truth. It is a fact that time reporting offers a variety of benefits to your business, and when done correctly, it makes your team more productive and your work more organized – without stifling creative thinking or leading to time-consuming micromanaging. 

Finding the Right Add-In for You

When looking for the perfect time tracking add-in for your Outlook calendar, you should be focusing on how an application can help assist you as a business manager and how easily it can get incorporated with your Microsoft Outlook. Looking for an application that is designed to account for your time spent can make your life a lot easier. A good timesheet application can maximize the value of both your revenue-generating and non-revenue generating tasks! It helps raise your productivity, allowing you to enhance your ability to successfully take on more income-generating activities. A good time tracking tool gives you exceptional benefits for your business:

  • It calculates how long each project takes for each client, which in turn helps give you the most transparent and accurate billing, while at the same time providing you with a way to offer estimates that are not under- or overestimated. This enables you to build a good relationship with your customers and ensure that you are charging adequately for your time. 
  • It helps you determine the accuracy and productivity of time usage by your staff for transparent and accurate time reports.
  • It minimizes the risk of any mistakes or human errors that were rampant when using a manual time tracking system.

These are all some of the benefits when you find a proper calender timesheet solution. So get started now.

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