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Share a Project’s Budget Progress with Your Team

One of Harvest’s most useful features is the Project Analysis page. Here, you can see reports on your project’s progress–how much time was tracked and how much of your budget remains. In the past, only Administrators and Project Managers could see this page. Over the next few days, we’ll be releasing a change that’ll allow you to open up this report to the rest of the team on a project by project basis.

Why the change? In a nutshell, transparency! You can give non-project managers a read-only view into project progress so that everyone can be more proactive about keeping the project on track. Project Managers will no longer need to update the team on how they’re doing against the budget–the whole team can see it for themselves in Harvest in a few clicks.

All you have to do is select Show project report to everyone on the project in the Permissions section of the project form and the project team will have access to the Project Analysis report.

ProjectPermissionsEdit2

What can your team see with this permission?

  • Total time for the project, broken down by billable and non-billable hours
  • Their own hours, broken down by task
  • Hourly budget progress (for the project as a whole, or their own)

What can’t they see?

  • Breakdown of each team member’s hours
  • Fee-based budget progress
  • Expenses
  • Billable rates and amounts
  • Costs

Here’s an example of what the team will see:
Project Analysis for Regular User

And if you don’t turn this new permission on for a project? Regular users won’t be able to see the Project Analysis page at all. They’ll just see their own timesheets and expenses (same as they do now).

You’ll see this new permission on your projects within the next few days. If you have any thoughts or questions, let us know!

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This was posted in New Features, Product News.
  • Lewis Phillips on October 27, 2015

    Fantastic feature! Definitely a good one for morale

  • Nice, but what we really *really* would like to see is a report that can be send to our customers. Very much how Toggl.com are doing it with their Bookmarked Reports: https://support.toggl.com/bookmark-reports/

    This way we would have a really nice reporting feature for our customers. That will beat Excel exports in almost all cases, which is what we are doing now.

    • Katie Rose on October 29, 2015

      @Rasmus Thanks for this feedback! It’d be helpful to learn more about the report you share with your clients and what data it contains. If easier, feel free to drop us a line at support@harvestapp.com so we can get more in depth. Thanks!

  • @Rasmus We’ve the solution to your need please checkout out product http://pastel.io . It allows you to share a harvest report with your client.

  • Thank you, been needing this for a long time. Not every agency has fancy project managers to share daily budget progress. I need my people to be more autonomous and this will help.

    What about budget by task though? I need people to see how much budget is left in a task, not just overall project.

    • Katie Rose on November 2, 2015

      @Chris Thanks for writing in! For this initial release, if you turn on this setting, your team won’t be able to see budgets by task. Since non-Administrators/Project Managers can only see their own hours, we thought it would be confusing (and deceiving) to display the total task budget next to their hours.

      If we opened it up so that a team member could see total hours for the task, then this would make sense. But unfortunately, a number of customers expressed concern over team members being able to see other people’s hours. I’m curious to hear if you have any additional thoughts on this, thanks!

  • You guys recently added the ability to budget per task rather than just by overall project. This allowed the ability to keep a project with multiple phases under a single project rather than breaking it into a bunch of separate small projects just so they can each have budgets.

    Now you have addressed what has been for me a major shortfall of Harvest, the ability for teammates to see hour budget status. But if they can’t see the individual task/phase budgets then your budget-by-task functionality is pointless.

    In instances such as mine where multiple team members might be working on a particular task/phase, this ability to see task budget seems more necessary than seeing the overall project budget.

    Perhaps you can create a toggle for whether or not you want to display individual task budgets so that we can choose what works best for our situations.

    Even more useful would be if I could divide up task/project budgets amongst individual team members. Then each could see their own time assignments without divulging anything beyond their own info.

    • Katie Rose on November 2, 2015

      Thanks for these additional details @Chris – helpful! One point of clarification, are you budgeting by task hours or fees? From your last comment it sounds like you may want to set your budget by person. This way, you can setup an hourly budget for each person, and they can see how they’re doing against their own individual budget.

      I realize that may not be what you’re looking for, but I wanted to pass it along just in case. Either way, noted on giving your team the ability to see budgets by tasks. I’m curious if those are hourly or fee-based budgets though. Thanks!

  • Hi Katie,
    I am referring to hourly budgets. For projects where we do not have task budgets I use per-person budgets sometimes.

    It is in the instances where I have overall hourly budgets per task I would like to be able to either show those task hourly budgets to people or assign individuals hourly task budgets per person.

  • I share Chris Fasan’s sentiment about showing budgets per task. If the newly-released feature doesn’t support it I’m afraid I’m stuck continuing to make everyone a project manager on every project so they can see hourly budget information.

    Since Katie mentioned customers concerned about team members seeing each others’ hours, it sounds like a configuration option is ideal, where folks like Chris and I can enable showing budget-by-task, and others can disable.

    After some back and forth with Harvest support a while ago I settled on using budget-by-task for every project we run and I haven’t looked back since. There aren’t a lot of ways to segment/categorize tasks, so budget-by-task has become our catch-all approach to project budgeting. Project has a weekly budget? Make a task for each week for that project. Project has a budget per sprint? Make a task per sprint. Etc, etc.

    Tracking overall project budget is kind of useful at a high level for my team, but it’s not going to help them in their day to day. Are they out of budget right now for the thing they’ve been working on? Do they have wiggle room to do a bit more work? These are the kinds of questions they need to answer as part of their workday.

    • Katie Rose on November 4, 2015

      Thanks for sharing the reasoning behind why sharing budget by tasks with your team is important @Chuck. It sounds like project phases may also be something of interest to you :).

      It’s not in the near-term plan to add a specific configuration to share the budget by task with your team, but it’s something we’ll consider down the road. Thanks for passing along this feedback, it’s very helpful!

  • Thank you for adding this feature.

    Now that we can share project budgets, a feature suggestion for an upcoming release might be to indicate the shared projects that are over their budget alert threshold, or total budget, on the time entry screen so people know right away when they are over.

    Thanks ahead of time for considering it.

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