Introducing Harvest Projects

We used to have an official slogan here at Harvest: “Time is money, track it wisely.”

We no longer use that slogan, but I still love it—because it’s true. We understand that your time is your product, and we built Harvest to help you keep track of that time and get paid for it.

But that’s just the basics. You hire more people, take on more projects, and your business grows and becomes more complex. Revenue is just one part of the puzzle. You need more data and more intelligence to make better decisions. You might ask yourself: What are our most profitable projects? Who are my best clients? How’s the team doing, and should we hire for our upcoming jobs?

Over the coming months, we’re making several significant upgrades to Harvest to help you answer just these kinds of questions.

Early Access: Harvest Projects

We’ve been hard at work on a new section: Projects.

Our goal with this section is to make better sense of all the data you put into Harvest. You’ll have a better grasp of budget, profit, costs, and trend.

We still have a ways to go, at least a few months till completion. But instead of a waiting for a big splashy launch of a fully completed section, we’re trying something unprecedented for us: we’re opening our new Projects section for early access. You can start taking advantage of our new features as soon as they’re ready.

First New Feature: Tracking Project Costs

Harvest is great at figuring out each project’s billable amount—the key piece of data that you need to get paid and that you use to measure against your budget. To get your project’s full picture, however, you need the flip side of that equation: the project’s costs. What does your project cost you as a business?

Our first new early-access feature allows you to keep track of project costs. Here’s how it will work:

  • Under Manage > People, you’ll be able to enter a cost rate for each person.
  • In the new Projects section, each project will display the project’s total cost, as well as costs broken down by team and by task.
  • All exported reports will have two additional columns—cost rate and cost amount—so you can quickly and easily access this data for your records.

A New Beginning

Over the past seven years, Harvest has steadily grown with you, our customers. When I look at the past—and I literally did that by going back forty-something pages on this very blog—I can see a very clear arc of progression based on customer feedback. We’re listening, and because of you, we’re improving. Our new Projects section is a significant leap forward for Harvest, and we believe it will help you to gain new and different insight into your business.

Sign up for early access today, and you can start using our new features next week.

As always, thank you for your support! We’re looking forward to hearing your thoughts on this new chapter for us here at Harvest.

Update (March 24th, 2014): thanks to everyone who expressed interest in the new Projects section! We received over a thousand sign-ups within the first three days, and we are slowly letting customers in for early access. We are currently working on a crucial feature for the new section. Once it’s ready (we hope by next week), we will invite more early access customers in.

29 Comments so far
  • Sounds like a great idea. Will have to wait to see in action to be able to give better feedback. Thanks ladies and gents.

  • Brilliant. Noticed the cost rate item in the API response for people and wondered why I couldn’t find it in the UI. Great stuff.

  • Excited to see this feature being added to Harvest and look forward to the additional project enhancements coming soon.

  • Landor March 7, 2014

    Awesome. I have a client that refuses to let me just bill hourly and I’ve been looking for a way to easily see if I’m “ahead” or “behind”. I think this will do that.

  • We live by Harvest daily and this will [hopefully] go a long ways toward tracking true profitability.

  • YUSSSS!

    <3 Harvest

  • We will definitely go with this! Thx for listening.
    Michael

  • Sascha-Matthias Kulawik March 8, 2014

    Hi, I am still missing a monthly budget on a project, that would be really helpful for monthly based services

  • My workflow has increased exponentially since I subscribed your services!

    Satisfaction is very high!

    Do you have any future updates regarding the reports? I’d like very much to have the ability to know in a report who has seen the invoices sent.

    Being an Apple Mac user, I’d like also a way to have those reports on the notification center.

    Keep up the excellent work.

    Ribeiro Avelar

  • heather March 8, 2014

    Will this feature extend to expenses? That’s the one I’m really missing….

  • Patric Svensson March 8, 2014

    Hi, when is the early access available?

  • Boston March 8, 2014

    “Under Manage > People, you’ll be able to enter a cost rate for each person.” Sounds good but I am still not sure this would address my challenge. For me the cost is a matrix of person and client/project. Each resource, for a given task, for a given client/project can be different. If I can assign a cost rate per person per project that will get me 80% there. Right now I have to manage this off line in Quick Books which is why I cannot directly import Harvest data into QB. If I am misunderstanding how this feature works I’d like to hear back!

  • Super super! Harvest rocks!

  • There seems to be a lot of updates coming out of the Harvest camp at the moment. Impressive!

  • I agree with Kirk, the recent updates are giving me confidence in Harvest that pushes back any feeling that I should look elsewhere for not just time tracking, but for so much of my profit/loss information. Keep up the good work!

  • Kat Matfield March 10, 2014

    Great news. If you let me assign a fixed cost to a project (which is how we bill at my company), then this would replace a really onerous process with a simple Harvest report.

  • In your roadmap, do you have tracking fixed priced projects? About half of the projects we do are fixed price and we bill by milestone. We’d love to be able to track the profitability on these types of projects.

  • +1 for person cost rate per project (or client)

  • This makes me very happy. I’ve asked for this several times. It’s going to keep me using harvest. thanks!

  • +1 for Scott Gingrich’s suggestion. Sometimes we do flat rate projects and I’d like to know what the hourly rate ends up being. Or be able to set budgets in terms of hours of work in those situations.

  • This is a great new addition and something I’ve been missing for a long time, nice work.

    What would also be helpful is the ability to mark hours paid out to contractors. Currently, we can mark hours invoiced to the client, and invoices paid, but I would love the ability to mark a contactors hours invoiced (by them) and paid (by me).

    thanks.

  • Who will have access to view costs?
    That is something that we would only want admins to see – not PMs or any other user.

    Cost can be a sensitive subject.

  • +1 for Scott’s suggestion as well. We do fixed-rate projects as well, so the forescasting and alerting functions don’t serve our needs currently. But by having a per-employee “cost” variable, that should now be a reality.

  • This sounds great! Keep up the good work!

  • Nancy Mather March 13, 2014

    +1 for Scott’s comment too. We’d like to see a way to have Harvest recognize fixed price projects.

  • +1 for Scott Gingrich’s suggestion.

  • Maria Joseph March 24, 2014

    Great job Shawn Liu!

    Time is the most precious thing one can ask for. So we must spend each minute wisely. I really enjoyed reading your blog.

    Keep it up :)

  • Thanks for the feedback and questions, guys! (And sorry for the late response here, we have been fielding questions from the early acccess sign-ups…)

    Some answers:

    * Yes, we will include expenses as part of project costs.
    * To start with, cost rate will be per person, and you cannot specify it on a project leve.
    * Only admins can see costs-related information.
    * Yes, we will introduce a feature to track fixed-fee projects later this year.

    We are slowly rolling out early access, and we have lots new features lined up for the new Projects section. Stay tuned!

  • Maria Joseph March 31, 2014

    Thanks for sharing the insights!

    We are looking forward for it.

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