Track Time with the Best Time Tracking Software
In a time where self-help books and YouTube are on the rise, everyone has heard the word ‘productivity’. You are supposed to be productive but the means to achieve that are often so complicated that you just carry on with your life. While this may have low stakes for an individual, business owners don’t have that liberty. If you run a business, you know very well that productivity is the key to success, and the drawer that holds that key is time tracking software.
Once you start to track time, you know how long each employee is spending per client or project, and that crucial piece of information improves the efficiency of your workspace in multiple ways. Since it will assess the progress on multiple tasks and offer insights into your employee management, future estimates, client billing, among other variables, you don’t only need to get a time tracking software, but you need to use the best one.
How Does Time Tracking Software Improve Workplace Efficiency?
Time tracking software optimize and improve the workflow in many ways, such as identifying all gaps in the workings of your organization, tracking progress on assignments, helping you make better decisions, and improving overall employee satisfaction.
If the a team usually takes one day to complete a certain kind of task, but has lately been requiring three days, you know something is wrong. They could be burned out, the task may require additional manpower, or this task is too complex for them, warranting the need for extra training.
Similarly, if the operations department is logging in extra time on administrative duties or if it is always a certain activity that ends up taking the most time, you know what needs to be optimized. The data from time tracking software is what led you to identify that such a problem even exists, and it needs to be rectified to raise the productivity of the entire team.
To track time is to have an omniscient view of the projects your employees have undertaken. Without interrupting them, time tracking software tells you how much more time a task may require, which employees are now free to be allocated to another assignment, and which employees have shown tremendous improvement that they can now do their duties faster.
Making Better Decisions
When you track time, it can help you conduct a performance analysis of each employee and identify their strengths and weaknesses. If person A takes one day to a specific kind of task and person B takes two, it is in the best interest of everyone that person A does it. As long as it’s done properly of course.
The analytics and trends not only help you assign staff to each assignment, but an understanding of how much time each task realistically ends up taking, you can use this data to ask your client for more realistic deadlines. If a particular department needs a helping hand, it is the ability to track time that made you aware of your renewed recruitment needs.
Improving Employee Satisfaction
When you are an empathetic leader who now realizes the effort that goes into each task and is willing to back your employees up for realistic deadlines, you will have a satisfied employee base. Additionally, if you start to track time, you can determine which employees are overworked and that there is an equitable distribution of workload.
If your employees are to apply for a promotion, the data from a time tracking software will be there to vouch for them, and this presence of tracked time is a great push for anyone battling procrastination. Increased ownership over their own time, among other ways mentioned, significantly raises employee satisfaction, which translates into improved productivity.
What Is The Best Time Tracking Software?
The best tool to track time is the one that makes your job the easiest for you. Paper-based time trackers no longer do that, owing to their time-consuming, expensive, inaccurate, and error-ridden nature. Therefore, all leading businesses have unanimously moved towards electronic time tracking software.
However, that still does not narrow it down. Since everyone has now realized the potential of this state-of-the-art time management tool, the market is saturated with time tracking software, and finding the one that works for you can be a challenging task. While some are third-party applications, others integrate with pre-existing software such as Outlook, and the latter are usually more streamlined in terms of what is required from your end.
Outlook Integration When You Want To Track Time
Most businesses, be it new or experienced, use Outlook for their calendar and email needs. It is the go-to platform to schedule new appointments, get reminders, and communicate with anyone, which is why building onto this infrastructure is one of the most efficient ways to track time.
The appointments in Outlook already house all the information you need for a time entry. It just needs minor tweaks, such as assigning the client, task, or project to each new entry and your job is done. The software will do everything else for you, and an additional level of accuracy is provided when managers review entries upon submission.
Not only is Outlook integrated time tracking software extremely straightforward, it is also usually more affordable as you are not spending money on a new server that will store your time entries. It does not alter the way Outlook worked prior, and since everyone is already familiar with its working, you save a lot of time and money that training usually comes with. Your employees can start to track time as early as today.
Features of the Best Time Tracking Software
While it has already been established that easy-to-use tools are often the best ones, many other features help time tracking software stand out from its competition. These include:
- Compatibility with multiple operating systems, devices, and languages;
- Assistance in financial tracking, via the ability to add hourly rates and information such as hotel and mileage costs;
- Security, so that confidential and sensitive information such as employee records and client billing is not compromised;
- Flexibility to export the timesheet from the time tracking software to other software such as for example Excel, ERP and CRM;
- Ease of data analysis by the option to view different variables (project type, time spent, etc) in various modes such as graphs and tables;
- Option to customize time entries by adding notes to provide proof of work or reasons for a particular change in the work or additional time spent;
- Simple flextime solution that places a cap on the number of hours that should be reported by different designations of employees, such as to discourage overworking to the point of burnout.
These features give time tracking software a competitive edge. The best tool varies from business to business, depending on needs and personal preferences.
Maintaining a meticulous record of workloads, costs, billable time, time off, resource availability, employee performances, and other variables is the key to smoother and less bumpy management.
Deciding to track time is the first step towards raising your operational productivity, and in a market of so many tools, it is the best time tracking software that will improve the quality of your work, accomplish more in less time, and raise your revenues.
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