Have you ever found yourself wondering where the time has gone? Feeling like the hours have just flown you by. Perhaps you need a simple solution to keep track of your hours and to see where your time is best spent?
Or maybe, you need a simple solution to record and monitor the time you and your workers spend on different tasks? To keep track of the hours worked, and manage payroll payments accordingly?
If this sounds like you, you have found what you are looking for: A simple timesheet template. Let’s jump in.
Timesheets are widely used amongst businesses, organizations, and in any situation where working hours and activities vary to help control and manage hours worked.
So keep reading if this sounds like the answer you have been looking for…
Benefits of Timesheets
With more than a third of workers feeling they waste ‘1-2 hours a day at work’, time tracking is more important than ever, and in particular as flexible and remote working has become increasingly common.
Reaping multiple benefits including increased productivity, control and transparency, time tracking is a tool we should all use, both personally, and professionally within the workplace.
In many countries around the world, including under federal law in the US, businesses are required to maintain an accurate account of their workers’ hours. As a result, where working times vary, timesheets are often utilized as one of the most effective methods for recording hours, streamlining and providing an accurate record.
What to include in a simple timesheet
The core purpose of a simple timesheet is to record employees’ working hours, overall and potentially against different activity types, and so a timesheet must at least feature a time in and time out section where employees are able to record their hours.
But what else should be included:
- Employee name - It seems obvious but, employee names must be included so that it is clear whose hours are being logged.
- Date - To indicate which day is being recorded.
- Breaks - Any breaks taken, whether that be a lunch break, toilet break, or any other planned/unplanned breaks should be recorded.
- Holiday or sick leave - When an employee is off work should still be included in their timesheet.
- Overtime - Any overtime or extra hours the employee has worked and need to be compensated accordingly for.
- Total hours worked - The total number of hours worked for working out billable hours.
- Activity breakdown - Where applicable, the breakdown of the time worked on different activities.
- Applicable rates of pay - Rates of pay may vary, particularly in shift work and during overtime.
Types of simple time sheets
Timesheets do not have to be limited to just one day. There are multiple different types of timesheets that can be used.
- Daily - Most commonly used to track employees activities and tasks.
- Weekly - Most effective when companies calculate billable hours weekly.
- Bi-Weekly - For when companies calculate billable hours every fortnight.
- Monthly - For when companies calculate billable hours every month.
These different time-frame based timesheets represent the most common simple timesheets where the aim is monitoring shift hours. However, timesheets may need to be more sophisticated when they are project focussed and specific to individual tasks, and their purpose is to help with time management and productivity.
How to use a simple timesheet template
First create or download a simple timesheet template to work with, and choose the type of timesheet that supports how and what you want to track, whether be that daily, weekly or monthly.
Second, start inputting the data. This includes documenting when the employee starts and finishes work [Surprise, Surprise…], but also any breaks. From this you can calculate billable or payable hours for payroll processing.
Stretch what you do with your timesheet. Don’t just use it to calculate billable hours, examine how you use your time. What do you do well? Where are your most productive hours in the day? How can you use your time more effectively?
This analysis is especially useful with project-based timesheets. After examining how much time is spent on various activities, you can record costs accordingly as well as more accurately plan future projects, and identify areas where more efficient processes
may be applied.
So let’s summarize…
In the most simple form, timesheets provide an accurate and transparent method for recording hours worked. They not only track your hours, but also identify where your time is best spent and help managers better understand cost allocations and efficiency.
To elevate your timesheet, break down hours by task or project. This gives greater detail to the analysis of how your company is spending time, and helps spot specific areas that need attention.
But don’t worry, timesheets don’t need to be complicated or difficult to use. They are simple and easy to manage, making them an excellent tool for both individuals and organizations.