Using Time Tracking Apps in a Remote Work Setting

Whether you employ full-time or freelance workers, you will find that they are most productive when given the freedom to choose where to work for the day. Industry leaders like Amazon, Apple, and Facebook have introduced a hybrid work setting to address this need.  

One of the biggest challenges in this work environment is overseeing tasks. After all, how can you check on team members who work in different locations? The answer lies in using a time tracker.

In today’s modern world, a time tracking app is essential in running seamless operations. Read on to discover how the right one can simplify your processes.

What Is Time Tracking?

Contrary to popular belief, a timing app can do so much more than generate an invoice template. Having one on your side helps you understand workflows, productivity, and other success metrics better.

At its core, timer software lets you log employee work hours. You can use this record for payroll purposes. There are two types of time tracking — personal and project. Check out their differences below.

Personal Time Tracking

Some time trackers aim to discover how individuals spend their time digitally. For example, you can find software that tracks websites you frequent and how much time you spend on each one. Later on, your timer can categorize your activities and turn the data into easily digestible insights.

When you view your team’s productivity score, you can compare workdays, find improvement opportunities, and adjust workflows accordingly.

You can use such tools for personal goals or even for small groups. However, they won’t help you much if you have a team of over ten members.

Project Time Tracking

If you have a team of tens or even thousands of hybrid or remote workers, it’s best to use a project time tracking app. They will perform the tedious task of overseeing tasks daily, so you don’t have to.

Connecting the technology to your project management software leads to various benefits like enhanced insights, collaborations, and resource allocations. These apps can help everyone on the team make the most out of every minute, no matter where they decide to work.

Benefits of Time Tracking

There are many advantages to using time trackers, especially if you connect them to a project management app. Check out some of the benefits of integrating these technologies.

Keep Teams on Track

Without a timing app, your team members might find themselves wandering about, unsure of the next step in completing a project.

In most cases, they don’t mean to slack off. They just don’t have a clear vision of workflows and deadlines, making it difficult to see beyond what’s on their plate at the moment.

However, with a time tracking app, you encourage maximum productivity. When team members have access to individual and group tasks, they can manage their time better.

Enhance Collaborations

One of the most effective ways to encourage teamwork is to align teams. When everybody sees how their work relates to somebody else’s, they will step up their work quality and speed.

Additionally, teams working together will help one another complete tasks on time. The camaraderie might even inspire healthy competition between groups.  

Improve the Billing Process

When you ask freelance employees about how long it takes to complete a project, they can probably give you a rough estimate for each task.

A time tracker can help you improve the billing process and develop an accurate by-the-minute log. It will help team members record hours without the tedious manual filing and enable you to pay for their exact billable hours.

Encourage Accountability

The moment you use a time tracker, all your employees will realize that the clock is ticking and that you are watching. Managers can review weekly productivity with individual team members to determine whether output levels are acceptable or not.

Later, decision-makers can review the duration of each project and ask the crucial questions, such as:

  • Which teams are producing quality output and meeting deadlines?
  • Is the company spending too much time on less critical tasks?
  • Is there a way to lower billable hours?

With a timer on your side, you can adjust your strategies to achieve company objectives.

Allocate Resources Effectively

Knowing how much time a task takes to complete is an essential factor in measuring project resources. If you have by-the-minute figures, you can determine which departments need more members, which ones you can cut budgets from, and which ones offer the most value to the company.

Introduce Time Tracking

Before using a timer for your hybrid and remote teams, it’s best to introduce the idea to them first. Remember that culture is the cornerstone to the success of these work settings, making it essential to enhance your practices instead of intimidating employees. Below are three practical tips for introducing the use of a time tracking app to your company.

1. Clarify the Purpose

To ensure that your employees don’t see time trackers as a threat to their freedom, communicate the intent of using one to your team. Be honest about it.

You can start with your mission, vision, and goals and segue into how a timing app can help you achieve them. Discuss how such technology will benefit the company and employees alike. Here are some of the employee benefits you can share:

  • Log in and out of work effortlessly from anywhere.
  • Allocate tasks fairly.
  • Make sure team members perform tasks on time.
  • Prevent any individual from burning out.
  • Update decision-makers, managers, and employees about a project’s progress.

2. Address Fears

Begin your presentation with empathy — how you understand that time tracking sounds like the ultimate micromanagement tool. After all, full-time employees do much more than being on the computer all day. Sometimes, they have to meet clients and make several phone calls in a day.

Afterward, remind your employees that you don’t want to spy on them or make things more difficult for them. Instead, you want to ensure your setup won’t stop them from completing outputs on time.

3. Listen to Suggestions

As with any software, time trackers require testing and onboarding. During this period, remember that full-time employees and freelancers will use the tool most of the time. For this reason, it’s essential to prepare training resources and allot some time for learning curves.

Before making a company-wide announcement, consider running a pilot with a few team members. Check if they can understand how to use the software with their current workflow and how well they can adjust to it.

After a few weeks, check the team’s progress. Find out what you can improve, and listen to their suggestions.

Track Time Meaningfully

As a modern company, you should be open to the idea of running hybrid or remote operations. It’s one of the most convenient ways to keep teams on track, enhance collaborations, and improve business processes.

If you’re ready to manage projects, boost productivity, and enhance transparency at work, it’s time to use a time tracker. Try Windu for free to connect your multi-location teams with one convenient dashboard.