It’s no secret that staff don’t see the benefits of timesheets and they certainly don’t want to spend the time completing them. The secret to success, is to introduce it as the norm and set team habits early on, addressing issues as they crop up. We've compiled a list of steps we help our clients with through their onboarding process, to ensure that from day one timesheets are recorded accurately week on week.
Be transparent with your staff
Generally, timesheet systems will allow you to quickly monitor where productive and chargeable time is attributed. Being open with your employees, letting them know it's not a way of spying on them, but rather a way to ensure a business stays profitable is the approach to take. This in turn leads to you being able to check the following:
- Which clients or projects require a fee negotiation.
- If you’re working a fixed-fee arrangement you can see your hourly revenue.
- Check which types of work are frequently going over budgeted resources
- Identify roadblocks in projects, so that in the future you can ensure the correct resources are assigned.
- Being able to increase efficiency, by being able to see which areas have over resources and which ones have under. If all staff are constantly requiring overtime to complete a project but another has no time being assigned, then you can make quick comparisons.
Set habits, save money and time
Many manual processes can be automated within a timesheet system. From absence requests and approval to timesheet chasing. Here are a few examples of processes that can be set and how to create new habits:
- Automate reports that show you a burndown of available staff, enabling you to see which resources are available. Automating holiday booking processes down to a few clicks at most can save admin time.
- Train employees on the benefits on their own timesheets, they can look back at an impartial overview of their own performance and output. It’s also sometimes really uplifting for staff to be able to see how much effort they put into a successful project or job.
- Enforce timely timesheet completion. Whilst Tempora offers the Tempora PROMPT, this tool may be too extreme for your internal culture. Instead incentives like cakes or fruit smoothies can be offered. Some Tempora clients also offer a staff-wide beer fridge providing an entire month is completed with no late timesheets.
- Lead by example. If staff see managers and/or directors completing timesheets, it becomes less of a you and I culture and shows that it’s something for the benefit of the company.
Configure an environment that works for your team
Whilst having correct, to the minute time recordings has its advantages, the reality is that many employees will be able to remember this if out of office or running back to back pitches. In this case we’d recommend the following considerations before rolling out a timesheet entry application:
- Choose broad time format to begin with, before moving to something more specific. Tempora would always advise that you begin with a 15-minute rounding should be use, so employees could record time in 15/30/45/60-minute blocks.
- Allow staff to use mobile and desktop time entry portals, so they can capture time as it is spent, so there won't become a backlog to catch-up on.
To find out more about how we can help with a timesheet entry rollout, guarantee timesheet completion or just about our training approach,why not drop us a line.