4 Simple Ways of Working Correctly with Time Tracking

Whilst a lot of designers and developers claim to their clients that they make use of time tracking applications..they don’t. They work on the project and estimate the time it took them to complete it through the browsing, emails, playlist setups and coffee breaks. That isn’t the right way though. Not if integrity is your thing.

You need to be honest with your clients and therefore making notes of your time tracking or giving them a time sheet at the end of a project is important. How do you work correctly with time tracking apps? Well let me give you a few pointers below.

How to be honest with your time tracking

Make notes whilst tracking time
Why would I say you need to make notes? Well to keep your timing accurate of course. Clients don’t want to pay for your coffee breaks or telephone calls. They are paying you for the work you need to do on their project. Keeping time accurately can be done in a lot of ways, but for me note taking helps me check up on people. How do I have them take notes? Well it’s simple really. When the timer starts the time is written on paper with a dash. When something comes up different to the project the time is written down again with a X. Now that was the start and end time. Then the timer can be paused or it can keep running, depending on the situation at hand.

This method is useful when using stopwatches. However, making use of the latest time tracking software they will be able to tell you exactly what you spend your time on, which program you used for how long etc. Just makes everything more accurate, but the old methods are still used in offices today.

Don’t answer emails whilst time tracking
I’m serious about this, you do get lost within your emails sometime and if you weren’t taking notes, clients are billed for things they is actually part of your own time. Set certain times in the day that is eligible for you to answer and read emails. Don’t do it whilst working on projects, it will not only make you loose focus, but steal time from you as well.

Set your prices accurately
Whether just starting out or having been in the industry for numerous years. Make sure your pricing is set accurately, don’t overcharge clients. Meaning that if the budget is X don’t use up the hours because you need the money. Finish the project and show the client your time sheet and how long it took you. I understand that everyone wants to make more money for doing less, but is that really the right way of doing it? I don’t think so. Do you?

Be honest with yourself
This is something that a lot of people struggle with in the beginning. Being honest with yourself will help you overcome a lot of things through life. Don’t make decisions that will impact your future because you are looking for short term gratification. Make the wise decision of being honest with yourself when working on clients projects. Honesty goes a long way when looking for return clients.

So what time tracking software is available out there apart from the stopwatch on my phone? Well to name a few:

  • Harvest – Simple Online Time Tracking Software
  • TimeCamp – Time tracking and productivity software
  • Klok – Free Time Tracking Software
  • Paymo – Track time and bill online
  • Easy Time Tracking – Time tracking software
  • Fanurio – Time tracking software for Freelancers
  • Invoicera – Billing Software + Invoice Software
  • Mavenlink – A better way to manage your projects

Hope you enjoyed the short post.
Remember to be honest and bill your clients accurately.

Featured Image: I’m tracking the book on Shutterstock

Jacques is an Entrepreneur and Founder of the An1ken Group. He recently launched a daily vlog on Youtube — JacquesvhTV. He started Creativeoverflow in 2009 as a hub for creatives. Connect with him: Jacquesvh.com - @Jacquesvh - Facebook - Instagram - Pinterest