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7 Proven Strategies for Encouraging Employees to Complete Timesheets

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14 February, 2024

Due to low timesheet adoption rates, businesses have a significant challenge when attempting to assess staff productivity, project expenses, and profitability effectively. Incomplete data, incorrect invoicing, and lost income can result when employees neglect to submit timesheets. On the other hand, it can make it harder to assess workers’ output and find places for growth.

Efficiently forecasting project schedules and deliverables is simplified with time tracking, which also aids in gauging and anticipating the progress of tasks and projects. Overall, it assists with managing expenses, comprehending resource costs, conducting quick reconciliations, and facilitating billing and chargebacks. You can effectively manage your resources by monitoring their tasks, portfolios, or administrative responsibilities. For an automated time-tracking platform to function effectively, it is essential for users to input accurate information and for approvers to thoroughly review, modify, or approve.

Why is it essential to implement timesheets?

Let us begin by defining what constitutes a robust timesheet adoption. There are three main components:

  1. All employees should ensure that their timesheet is completed.
  2. The data entered is correct, with a modest but respectable margin of error.
  3. Timesheets are current, nobody is chronically behind.‍

Why is this significant? Now, let us address each of them individually.

If all employees submit their timesheets, project financials will be accurately reported. Failure to record time entries accurately can lead to inaccurate cost reporting and inflated profit figures. This can create a misleading perception that certain groups of projects are more successful than they are.

Any crucial strategic decision are greatly influenced by how reliable information available in the report. A report based out of authentic and reliable data helps anyone take an informed decision which is more likely to be successful be it for small business or for an enterprise.

Timesheet entries that are up to date increase the likelihood that they are accurate and provide the organization with an accurate picture of the current situation. This enables project managers to forecast and also in the identification of projects showing indications of concern/risks, facilitating timely corrective measures.

Friday around five o’clock. Just an hour from now, timesheets are due. Meanwhile, PRQ Tech is frantically attempting to locate any time entries that may have gone missing.

While managers gnaw on their nails trying to figure out who has not turned in their hours, employees are having a tough time remembering all they delivered in the previous three weeks. The air is thick with tension as the timesheet submission deadline draws near.

No proactive measures are being taken to modify the process, resulting in a calamitous situation.

The Challenges of Poor Timekeeping Practices

A multitude of issues may arise from an unhealthy culture of timesheet adoption, as our fictional example of PRQ Tech is aware. Your company will feel the effects of lousy timesheet practices, from heightened anxiety to diminished earnings.

  • Substantial impact on revenue: Errors in timesheets can have a significant monetary impact on businesses. The US Bureau of Labour Statistics has reported a significant decline in labour productivity in the nonfarm business sector since 2005. This decline has resulted in a staggering loss of $10.9 trillion in output, equivalent to $95,000 per worker.
  • Time Squandered: Improper timekeeping practices can lead to managers and finance personnel wasting valuable time searching for missing entries, which can drain resources.
  • Client Billing Delayed: Delays in payment and even erosion of customer confidence might result from late timesheets.
  • Unclear Outlook on Project Status: Without accurate and timely timesheets, managers may find it challenging to track project progress and make well-informed decisions. This concealment could potentially harm the overall success of the enterprise.
  • Excessive burden on finance teams: Timely submission of timesheets is crucial for finance teams working under tight deadlines for payroll and invoicing, reducing unnecessary stress. The issue becomes more complicated when the time data seems unreliable, leaving finance managers to investigate and verify the entries.

Here is a compilation of various challenges that our clients have faced while implementing time tracking, along with practical & feasible solutions which has been implemented.

Feel free to email us at pkumar@accountsight.com if you have any further examples not included here that you would be happy to share.

The barrier to Implement Timesheet

  • The organization has not previously been required to disclose time, and adapting to change is always challenging.
  • Users encountered a subpar experience with a previous timesheet reporting system.
  • Employees often forget the submission of timesheets.

Proven ideas that made it easier to adopt Timesheet culture:

By adhering to the seven steps in this article, teams utilizing AccountSight enhance timesheet adoption, ensuring precise time data for their whole organization.

1. Discuss the impending time-tracking initiative:

  • Craft messages tailored to specific groups and individuals, emphasizing the significance of their contributions to the process (emphasizing people, not just time reporting) and providing clear information about the advantages and disadvantages.
  • Posters that convey the significance of what is to come and why.
  • Messages and videos from leadership reiterating the significance (and, preferably, their participation!)
  • A well-thought-out email campaign that includes training materials in its pre, during and post-rollout phases
  • Outline the expectations and advantages for the organization, the department, and the users, stressing the importance of their feedback.
  • Streamlines resource timekeeping, enhancing accuracy and efficiency while reducing manual effort.
  • Facilitates the comparison between the budgeted and actual expenses, allowing for the identification of discrepancies and necessary modifications.
  • Enables efficient reporting on project hours, including tracking the distinction between capitalized and operational work.
  • Facilitates invoicing for hours performed for internal employees’ billable tasks and contract resources.

2. Engage your employees in the ongoing process and implementation:

  • Engage in a conversation with users to address the current negative perceptions and worries around time reporting. Utilize logical reasoning to alleviate these fears. It is important to emphasize that the objective is not to control or monitor employees excessively but rather to assist the firm in comprehending the workload.
  • Highlight the significance of the user’s input, emphasizing its importance for achieving success.
  • Offering live or video-based training along with succinct reference and how-to materials, make sure to highlight time-saving features like Auto Timer, Reference comments column for each task, Copying timesheet for the forthcoming week, and more.

3. Ensure that timesheets are only entered by those whose reporting is absolutely necessary

  • Employees whose job directly influences project financials and adherence to regulations.
  • Effective administration of such persons ensures their active participation in bearing the burdens and demonstrates their commitment to the company’s best interests.

4. Streamline timesheet input criteria.

  • Make sure to include only essential information in the timesheet input. Avoid optional elements irrelevant to the user and not contributing to essential data analysis.
  • Reduce the number of billable tasks.

5. Acknowledge and incentivize.

  • Communication on adoption and compliance achievements and improvements.
  • Expressing genuine gratitude through emails and letters for achievements.
  • Tangible rewards to motivate and enhance performance include displaying timesheet approvals, promoting friendly competitions, and incentivizing error-free time approvals.

6. Ensure that resources remember to submit timesheets, use timesheet reminders.

  • For all resources with outstanding timesheets, set up daily, bi-weekly, or weekly reminders.
  • Create a daily notification for all resources whose timesheets are past due.
  • When a resource’s timesheet is overdue, set up a daily alert to notify their immediate supervisor.
  • Ensure that employees are promptly notified when their timesheets are rejected so they know they need to make corrections and resubmit.

7. Give your employees a convenient alternative to punching in and out by making mobile timesheet access available to your company.

  • Consider time-tracking platforms that provide mobile applications to clock time entries.

Erroneous time monitoring can substantially decrease efficiency and impede corporate activities. Mitigate such issues, it is crucial to cultivate a culture that consistently adheres to the usage of timesheets. AccountSight is specifically designed to enhance the precision of timesheets and avoid lateness.

Feel free to email us at demo@accountsight.com if you have any further examples not included here that you would be happy to share.

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