what is an example of a timesheet

For small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), tracking and making the most of time usage can often feel like a daunting challenge. We get it! So, let’s chat about the timesheet: so simple that it’s commonly overlooked. We at Harvest know, however, that it’s a powerful tool designed to help businesses track and manage employee time. In this blog post, we'll look at the concept of timesheets, their purpose, and real-world examples tailored specifically for SMBs. Whether you're new to the concept or have already adopted it but need to polish up your time tracking practices, this guide is here for you.

What is a standard timesheet?

Standard timesheets for employees are essentially documents used to track the hours worked by employees within a specific period. It serves as a comprehensive record of one's activities over time.

A timesheet typically includes fields for:

  • employee details
  • dates
  • hours worked each day
  • tasks or projects undertaken

At Harvest, we consider timesheets as a tool for both employees and employers, providing insights into productivity levels, project progress, and resource allocation. Leveraging timesheets not only helps accurate payroll processing and compliance with labor regulations (see your company’s guidelines for timesheet compliance meaning) but also facilitates performance evaluation and strategic decision-making for businesses. Gone are the days of timesheets as a mundane admin tool!

What information is included on a timesheet vs. what information is required?

Typically on a timesheet template, (whether it’s for timesheet requirements for salaried employees or time clock rules for hourly employees) the required information typically includes details necessary for accurate time tracking and payroll processing. This often includes:

  1. Employee Name: Identifying the individual responsible for the recorded hours.

  2. Date: Specifying the day(s) on which the work was performed.

  3. Hours Worked: Documenting the number of hours worked by the employee.

  4. Task or Project: Describing the specific activity or project undertaken during the recorded time.

  5. Department or Client: Identifying the department or client associated with the task or project.

  6. Overtime, Breaks, and Leave: Recording any overtime hours worked, breaks taken, or leave hours used.

Meanwhile, the information included on a timesheet may extend beyond the required details to provide additional context, facilitate project management, or support analysis. This may include:

  1. Supervisor Approval: A section for supervisors to review and approve the recorded hours.

  2. Notes or Descriptions: Allowing employees to provide additional context or detail regarding the tasks performed.

  3. Billable Hours: Documenting billable hours for client projects to support accurate client billing.

  4. Project Codes or References: Using codes or references to link time entries to specific projects or tasks for tracking and reporting purposes.

  5. Total Hours: Calculating and displaying the total hours worked for each day or the entire reporting period.

  6. Pay Rate: Specifying the hourly wage or salary rate for the employee to support payroll processing.

What do you write in a timesheet?

Let’s look at this from an employee's perspective. Filling out a timesheet involves accurately documenting the hours worked and tasks completed during a specified period. Here's what an employee typically writes in a timesheet:

  • Date: Record the date(s) corresponding to the days worked within the reporting period.
  • Hours Worked: Specify the number of hours worked each day, including regular hours, overtime, and any breaks taken.
  • Tasks or Projects: Describe the specific tasks or projects worked on during each time block. This could include details such as project names, client names, or task descriptions.
  • Department or Client: Indicate the department or client associated with each task or project, if applicable.
  • Notes or Descriptions: Provide any additional context or details relevant to the work performed. This might include updates on project progress, challenges faced, or accomplishments achieved.
  • Leave Requests: If taking time off or using vacation or sick leave, indicate the hours used for each type of leave.
  • Total Hours: Calculate and sum up the total hours worked for each day and the entire reporting period.
  • Supervisor Approval: Leave space for the supervisor to review and approve the timesheet entries, ensuring accuracy and compliance with company policies.

Timesheet management is not just about filling in blanks regarding timekeeping rules for employees—it's about a culture of accountability, efficiency, and transparency within the workplace. From recording hours worked to providing detailed insights into project progress, timesheets are invaluable tools for employees and employers. Whether it's noting down project milestones or logging overtime hours, each entry in a timesheet plays a vital role in shaping the trajectory of the company. Ready to apply this powerful tool to your org? Let’s get started!