As business becomes more competitive, finding solutions that provide you with an edge is crucial. To find your advantage, you need to gain better insights into your team's operations and workflows to see where they’re most successful — and where they could use some assistance.
Time tracking is a great way to gain insight into what operations are at peak performance and what areas need improvement to boost productivity and increase your profits.
Using a time tracking solution allows you to monitor how much time is spent on each task, so you can better manage resources and allocate them more efficiently.
For both individual freelancers and small business owners, time tracking is an easy way to stay organized and on top of your tasks. Let’s look at how.
1.Task management flexibility
When you’re working on projects, road blockers will inevitably get in the way — meaning having some flexibility is crucial. That’s why it’s essential to identify areas where you can be more flexible without causing a delay in your project outcomes.
A significant benefit of time tracking is that it allows you to identify these areas and include that critical flexibility in your project timelines. By understanding how much time is being spent on each task, you can prioritize and adjust your team members’ workflow accordingly, helping keep your projects on track — and maybe even shorten the timeline.
Plus, the insights you gain from tracking and analyzing time spent on tasks will help you identify other areas where you can delegate or outsource tasks to free up your time for other essential duties.
Time tracking software also allows you to assign tasks in a way that makes sense for your organization, ensuring everyone is working on the same page and completing the right jobs at the correct times. It will also let you keep track of how long each task takes so you can better plan future projects.
These kinds of data insights will provide you with all the information you need to become more adaptable and flexible to continue increasing output and efficiency.
2. Improved productivity
When you improve productivity, you can finish more projects in less time and increase profitability. Using time tracking software will help you boost productivity by providing an understanding of where your employees excel and how they spend their time.
Gaining insights into how your team members are utilizing their time will help identify those areas where they can improve efficiency and make changes that will help them get more done in less time.
Additionally, by tracking the amount of time spent on each task, you are able to estimate how long it will take to complete future projects. This will help you plan ahead and set realistic deadlines for your teams.
As you get a clearer picture of how your team operates, you can create detailed reports to share with team members and clients alike, which allows you to create realistic timelines and estimates.
3. Better collaboration
Creating better ways to communicate with your teams is a challenge for any size organization, especially if you’re hiring independent contractors and freelancers. By implementing time tracking software, you can keep your team organized and collaborate more effectively with other project members.
By seeing how your team is allocating their time, you’re able to identify which individuals may need help to complete their tasks and which team members can work independently. This understanding helps you assign tasks in a way that makes sense for your organization and encourages better communication between team members.
4. Improved focus
Time tracking can also be a great way to help your team focus easier. When you are running multiple projects simultaneously, understanding how to utilize your resources and manage your team’s workload is crucial. Time tracking software can help identify where these gaps are so you can alleviate these challenges upfront allowing your team to focus more intently on the project at hand.
When employees track their time, they become more likely to concentrate on one task at a time instead of multitasking, helping them stay focused and get work done faster. In addition, eliminating multitasking reduces the room for mistakes to be made. Instead, by focusing on one task at a time, your team can better understand what needs to be done and how long it will take to complete it. This allows them to plan their day more effectively and ensure they get the most out of their work hours.
5. Increased accountability
When you implement a time tracking solution, your team can pinpoint areas to improve, helping them become more organized and accountable for their time and their projects. And when you have accurate records of how much time is spent on each task, you can easily identify areas where employees may need additional training or support.
Creating a performance roadmap that identifies areas for improvement helps hold each team member accountable for their areas of focus. Showcasing these roadmaps across your team provides transparency and accountability. This also encourages your team members to take ownership of their work, further increasing workplace focus and productivity.
Time tracking systems provide a way to make it easier for managers or team leads to giving credit to those who completed a specific task or surpassed a project goal. It also helps track the amount of time that was put into each project, providing your team with insight to see exactly how much time they have spent on each task.
6. Better decision making
By tracking time, identifying areas of improvement, and providing more accurate estimates of costs and timelines, you’re equipped to make better decisions for future projects.
Identifying areas where your team can make changes to increase their productivity levels can be done through time tracking software like Harvest. When you understand the amount of time that is spent on each task, you can better estimate how long it will take to complete future projects. This will help you plan ahead and set realistic deadlines that will lead to more informed decision-making.
Managing projects the right way can be challenging, but doing it effectively is critical to the success of your business. Knowing if you’re overspending in certain areas will allow you to avoid costly overruns and give you a more accurate read on the amount of time it takes your team to complete similar tasks so that you can produce better estimates for future projects.
7. Increased accuracy
Accurately forecasting is vital when estimating the amount of time and resources you may need for client projects. Time tracking allows you to increase your accuracy by collecting the correct type of information with customizable detailed reports on how your employees are spending their time. This will help you identify areas where changes can be made to workflows, therefore, leading to reduced errors.
Additionally, understanding how time is spent lets you understand where resources are needed most, providing valuable insights into where resource demand is the highest. This information is crucial for you and your team and can help you make more accurate decisions about how you should allocate your resources. Knowing where to spend your time and resources will increase your ability to assess the timelines and budget for future projects accurately.
It’s also important to consider ways to redistribute or share responsibilities to bring everybody up to the same level. This could mean providing additional training or support for those who need it, or even changing roles within the team so that everyone has an equal chance to contribute and highlight their specific skill sets.
As a result, you have a better understanding of where resource demand is highest so that you can ensure that your teams have access to all the necessary resources needed to succeed.
8. Better client relationships
Business is about relationships, and any tool that helps you create and grow your relationships with your clients is essential for you to include within your operations.
When you include time tracking software in your business, you can show your clients real-time reports about how your team is achieving success by offering them detailed progress reports. These reports also allow you to identify areas where you can make changes that will help better serve your clients.
Additionally, by tracking the amount of time spent on each task, you can more accurately estimate how long it will take to complete future projects. This helps you plan ahead and set realistic deadlines for your clients.
And the software will allow you to quickly check the status of a job without having to manually search through paperwork or emails, saving time and energy, letting you report back to your clients about the status of active projects, and improving your communication and relationships.
9. Reduced overhead costs
For your projects to be successful, you need to be able to deliver results on time and within budget. However, avoiding issues that prevent profitability can be challenging when you’re working with multiple projects and teams. Using time tracking software, you can produce detailed reports and analyze the material costs that your team needs for their success.
Time tracking lets you identify areas where they can make changes that will help provide the right amount of resources to aid your teams and, in turn, save money by not allocating too many different unnecessary resources.
Additionally, by tracking the amount of time spent on each task, you can better estimate how long it will take to complete future projects. This helps you plan ahead and set realistic deadlines to reduce overhead costs.
10. Increased profitability
Understanding how your team utilizes its time on a project will do two things for you.
First, it will provide essential insights into how your team can be more efficient in their tasks. Second, it lets you create better estimates for future projects. Understanding these areas clearly will increase efficiency and help prepare more realistic forecasts for your clients.
To understand how your team operates at work, you can try to track it manually — but that can be glitchy. In addition, manual data entry can create a slew of mistakes and underreported items that will skew your data analysis.
Instead, time tracking software can automate many of the tasks of manual recording and eliminate human error in the process, making your reports more accurate and detailed. With detailed, accurate reporting, you are better equipped to make precise project cost optimization, helping you make informed decisions that boost profitability.
Additionally, by monitoring your employees’ performance over time, you can ensure that everyone is working to their full potential and that resources are being allocated appropriately, increasing your profit per project.
Time tracking benefits
From the ability to capture all your time spent, create detailed reports and analyses, turn those insights into accurate estimates, and produce convenient invoices, Harvest’s time tracking tools make it easy to boost your business overall. Get started with your free trial today.