The Best Time Tracking Software for 2017

In 2017, let’s make “passive” timekeeping work in your favor. Here are five Chrometa features you can take advantage of to capture 20% or more hours – while actually working less – thanks to the best time tracking software for 2017.
(And if you need to reactivate your Chrometa account to take advantage of these features, you can restart with a free 30-day trial here).
Feature #1: Timeline for Multiple Days
Our Timeline view is a play-by-play recording, down to the minute, of every piece of work you’ve done on every device (computer or smartphone) through the workday. By request, you can now view your Timeline over multiple days:
 
Every Minute of the Day, With Details
best time tracking software 2017
 
Great – but how do we turn this amazing level of detail into something we can put on a Timesheet? 
#2: Select a Block of Time
Here’s a shortcut that will let you sweep multiple minutes of time into one time block quickly. If you were jumping around between applications (such as email and Word) but really working on the same task, this is a good trick to help you group everything.
 
Left-click the first entry you want to bucket. Then hold down the Shiftkey while you scroll down and select the last entry in your task – and everything in between will be highlighted for you.
 
Use Shift + Left-Click to Select Consecutive Entries
 
automatic timesheets
 
Now let’s get these combined, rounded up and assigned to a client and project.
#3: Autocomplete in Move to Project 
Towards the top of your screen, there is a big blue button that says Move To Project. Click this to access your Client and Project list.
 
Then you can just start typing the name of the Client or Project you’re looking for in the active search window that appears. Your list will be filtered down as you type, so that you can quickly find the project you want to assign this block of time to.
 
Use Active Search to Filter Your Project List
 
project time tracking
 
You can select the Project to move and group these entries at the same time. Or, you can take advantage of the & Annotate shortcut.
#4: Annotate While You Move to Project
As you mouse over your Project name, you’ll see two mouseover buttons appear toward the right side. The left button is an & Annotate shortcut that lets you assign an annotation as you specify the project.
 
The “& Annotate” Shortcut
 
attorney time tracking
Think of an Annotation as the translation from the computer-speak that Chrometa captures to the human-speak that you will place on your Timesheet. You’ll specify this using the popup that appears next:
 
Categorize And Annotate Popup
 
legal time tracking
#5: Back To Summary, or Export
Remember those jumbled 13 minutes of computer time? They are now a concise 18-minute (or .3) time entry on my Timesheet:
 
Ready for Export
 
passive timekeeping
 
This time entry is now on your Timesheet, ready for invoice or export! Your client will never guess that you created it with a few clicks of the mouse.
 
If you’re export to another billing, practice management or accounting system (such as Clio, CosmoLex, QuickBooks Online, etc) this entry will show up as if you created it directly in that system manually.
 
This 5-step time entry sweet will become faster and faster as you get the hang of things. If you have questions, or would like to take advantage of our complimentary 1:1 training sessions, please let me know.
 

Effective Project Management and Time Tracking Go Hand in Hand

Projects cannot commence without a plan. To produce a realistic plan, you need significant knowledge about crucial business aspects including personnel, resources, and strategic objectives.

However, with project management, you can stay on top of the game, assuring that only the best practices are implemented.

Moreover, it ensures that resources are allocated effectively, making best use of time, money and employees.

Significance of Time in Project Management

When managing projects, time is one of the most crucial resources to consider. It is an invaluable criterion for project managers to determine if the project is being operated as intended or not.

Furthermore, time management is crucial when it comes to resource maximization in collaboration with other resources such as personnel and money.

Typically, employees are paid for two things: their time and skills. Therefore, it is their duty to be present at work for required number of hours each day, fulfilling duties within the prescribed time.

A project manager must be aware of how to establish priorities. This is done by allocating more time to important tasks, providing room for high-quality work. Furthermore, consistent feedback and reporting can also offer project managers with insight on how smoothly the project is working, under coordination and active communication. Remember, it is easy to execute project management if everything is carried out within the established frame of time.

Focus on time when making crucial business decisions. Make strategic modifications. When you alter time frames, it will impact results.

This is the reason why during the initial stages of planning projects, you should hire project managers who are skilled to produce sound estimations.

Also, mitigating risk is a crucial component of business management. This involves anticipating potential risks, developing schedules, allocating resources, delegating responsibilities, and more.

Risk mitigation can make the work process smooth, overcoming challenges and unanticipated obstructions.

All in all, project management is crucial because it ensures that projects are executed in accordance with the devised plan. Remember, the significance of time for projects cannot be overstated. Therefore, to effectively utilize time, you must encourage your project managers use time tracking solutions.

Benefits of Time Tracking in Project Management

Outlined below are some benefits of time tracking for effective project management:

Time tracking enables project managers to:

  • View team activities and how much time is being spent on which task,
  • Assign the right kind of job to the right person,
  • Take instant action on areas that are clearly require improvements,
  • Track overall employee productivity and levels of performance over a certain period of time,
  • Effectively handle remote teams,
  • Establish clear expectations, deliverables, and deadlines etc.

With Chrometa, you can encourage your employees to record all their time spent on computers and mobile phones (Android & iPhone) passively. This will further help them make effective use of business time, increasing billable hours, and receiving payments owed by clients to your business.

Employee Time Theft: Cost Crunches for Businesses

Time theft takes place when employees get remunerated for work they haven’t done.

More appropriately, they get paid for time not spent on business work. Considering the growth of mobile workforce and easy internet access, time theft is becoming a more serious concern for businesses today. The issue is so serious that businesses are losing billions of dollars worth of productivity on an annual basis.

However, time theft is not limited to a certain kind of person, designation or industry. This takes place everywhere. And people are getting more creative in ways to evade work.

This is where businesses need to take a more proactive approach and fight against employee time theft. To do that, we must first understand various forms of time theft taking place. Some of them are outlined below:

Time Card Theft

There are multiple ways time card theft can take place. For instance, if an employee fails to show up at work, he asks a colleague to punch them in and out for that particular day. Also known as buddy punching, this act is a serious fraud against company policies.

Another form of time card theft at work is when an employee lies about the number of hours he/she spent at work, for a given shift, in a single day.

Prolonged Breaks

This form of time theft occurs when employees take over-extended breaks at work. This can include extending regular lunch breaks. Employees who tend to leave for lunch breaks early or come back late are guilty of this form of time theft.

The same holds true for employees who take more breaks in a single shift than they are permitted (under the company policy). Prolonged breaks are easily the most common types of employee time theft at the workplace, across industries.

Too Much Personal Time

It is a common practice for employees to spend most of their time at work taking personal calls and replying to personal messages/emails.

They tend to deal personal issues and family situations at work, wasting time and hampering productivity. These non-work related activities form personal time. While in some cases, employees are given certain liberties (if they’re able to manage work at the same time). When this freedom is misused, it leads to time theft.

Internet Time Theft

Internet time theft is common, yet the most difficult one to detect.

That’s because employees tend to use the internet for both, work and non-work related purposes. This can include everything, ranging from regular internet browsing to social networking, and using instant messengers at work.

While it is not possible to eliminate time theft from the workplace altogether, but implementing time tracking solutions as a form of corporate policy can help.

With Chrometa, businesses can passive record employee time, encouraging them to make productive use of it for overall growth and success.

Pivotal Role Played By Time Tracking Software for Startups

Is it even possible to implement the business plan as intended? Have you realistically planned for time, personnel and resources? Are the products/services costing done right?

Typically, the first few years after business inception are the most critical. Hence, it’s imperative for startups to proactively gather crucial, reliable information. From the very beginning, time tracking software has been a source of significant information, pertinent to work sequences.

Moreover, it has shown ways in which work can be optimized.

Businesses see time tracking programs as essential tools for calculating price, invoicing customers, and controlling business operations more effectively. This is why experts recommend startups to use time tracking software from the initial business stages, so that crucial concepts are productively established and maintained.

Basis for Calculation

Time is an invaluable asset for businesses, particularly startups. The number of hours spent by employees in work-related activities directly contributes towards customer invoice. And this further helps in calculating price.

During the early business stages, it is imperative to assess if work hours have been practically evaluated, or whether you should be charging a higher price for products/services. Time tracking can also help determine reasonable price.

Improved Processes and Allocation of Resources

Is there a chance you can improve internal communications and meetings? When implemented from an initial stage, time tracking applications spot activities that take up extra, unnecessary time. Once you identify and eliminate these activities, process optimization becomes easier. Moreover, it prevents you from getting involved into unproductive work techniques.

For startups, the first three years are the most stressful.  However, with time tracking software, businesses can learn where free capacity exists. This further assures employees have sufficient work, and are not overworked.

Moreover, during these years, startups can leverage on employee skills and talents most.

Time Tracking – Making It a Part of Corporate Culture

While businesses realize the real benefits of time tracking solutions for growth and success, this concept is not very popular among employees.

Some find it to be a total nuisance, while others consider it to be an invasion of privacy. The idea of being constantly monitored doesn’t go down well among employees. As a result, they easily develop feelings of resentment and dissatisfaction.

This is where the true role of employers comes into play. From the very beginning, employers must introduce the concept of time tracking to employees, explaining how they can benefit from it.

Moreover, efforts must be made towards integrating time tracking in the corporate culture. This gives employees a chance to adjust and feel comfortable about time tracking and management.

Given the crucial role time tracking can play for startups, get our free 30-day trial to see how our passive time tracking solution fits with your startup’s needs. We also have a dedicated time tracking app for Android and iPhone so that your employees can capture productive time on-the-go.

Tracking Employees at Work: How Effective Is It?

Time is an invaluable asset for businesses.

Employers expect employees to complete more work in less amount of time.

According to a number of studies, it has been concluded that the internet has contributed enormously in improving employee productivity.

It has introduced labor automation, improved communication, enhanced access to information, and more.

On the other hand, an article published in the Wall Street Journal claims that internet distraction has resulted in a major decrease in the productivity of employees having access to computers.

Today, employees are having a tough time getting work done in time––thanks to social networking channels, smartphone notifications, and e-mail alerts.

Furthermore, a latest study revealed the top 10 killers of productivity at work. The top 4 are:

  • Smartphone usage/texting,
  • Gossiping,
  • Internet, and
  • Social media

Consequently, the need for tracking employees for how they spend their time is more crucial now than ever.

Here are a few reasons why and how tracking time is beneficial for both, employer and employees:

Time Tracking Is a Lesser Extreme Form of Employee Monitoring

Employers tend to hire dedicated IT personnel to take care of emails, browsing histories, and keystrokes that contribute towards the breach of corporate policies or personal use.

Time tracking can serve as a better, friendlier solution that’s also lesser invasive than employee surveillance. Moreover, time tracking is cost-effective, relative to other monitoring options. Therefore, if your business requires employee monitoring, invest in a time tracker.

Time Tracking Encourages an Ideal Process of Working

To determine the work capacity of your team, use the analysis feature of your time tracking app. This feature helps employers devise improved ways of making use of resources, efficiency.

Moreover, employees can assess their own time to determine weak points. This way, business managers can provide employees with better accountability, without checking on and off. That’s because time tracking records and reports daily, weekly, monthly and yearly time into timesheets. This can later be exported to Clio, FreshBooks, QuickBooks, and more.

Time Tracking Improves Focus While Reducing Interruptions

Instead of perceiving time tracking solutions as privacy invasion or a medium to spot low-performing individuals, employees must consider it as a tool that helps stay on track.

When employees start tracking their own time for a given project, or even day-to-day activities, they’ll be better able to shut off interruptions and indulge in activities that contribute towards goal achievement.

Time tracking has also helped most employees in overcoming procrastination by spotting activities or habits that waste time.

To help employees focus on work, while effectively managing time, invest in Chrometa. Our time tracking solution also creates professional-looking invoices, allowing you to receive payments electronically. Get a free 30-day trial today.

The Secret to Success for Agile Teams: Time Tracking

If you’ve got a team of agile software developers, we understand how people tend to divide into two major camps:

There’s a group of people who strongly believes that time tracking solution are absolutely essential and imperative for success.

Then, there’s another group that rolls eyes at the very thought of having to run projects with a time management tool.

Which group do you belong to? If it’s the second, allow us to convince you on the effectiveness of time tracking for agile teams:

Accuracy in Billing

Utilizing a responsive approach for creating software is intended to simplify and streamline things. However astoundingly, it can also toss and overcomplicate the overall billing process.

Remember, billing doesn’t have to be an issue when you have a personal timekeeper with you. It is common for agile teams to charge clients on an hourly basis. So, you will find it easier to calculate the per-person hours into a great-looking invoice over a few fingertip strokes.

An easy approach to software development with streamlined billing—yes, dreams do come true.

Real-Time Estimations

When it comes to agile development, estimating time and cost can be quite tricky. Expect yourself get puzzled with project estimations that are far-fetched, away from reality. Talking in real terms, agile software development entails huge investments in terms of both—time and money.

With time tracking software, however, you will be able to accumulate data regarding how much time it takes to complete sub-parts of projects. Such and more useful insights can keep you updated about the future estimates, allowing you to seamlessly carry out potential projects.

Now, who needs a crystal ball?

Enhanced Processes

One of the biggest advantages of working through the agile approach is that you can instantaneously get used to the modifications and new obligations in order to come up with the finest product. However when you do so, it’s unquestionably useful to have some genuine information in support of those changes.

Again, time tracking remarkably helps in this. Observing how agile teams manage time can aid in determining holdups and other hindrances. This can help improve your processes, making them far more efficient and beneficial.

Of course, we understand most people have some skepticism around time tracking for agile teams. However, it cannot take away from the fact that time tracking has a tremendous impact on the performance and success of such teams. So, put down everything and start your 30-day free trial offer now.

Streamlining Efficiency: Is Time Tracking Software Worth The Investment?

Does your business need time tracking software?

Finding that out is not a hard nut to crack. There are a host of things you need to take into account when coming down to this decision, including the company requirements.

At the end of the day, the real question is: how can time tracking software offer benefits to the company?

At Chrometa, our time tracking solutions are competent and intended to enhance organizational productivity. There are no two ways about the fact that time tracking apps improve efficiency of employees, and are also beneficial for the organization in general.

Free Trials: How Do They Help?

One of the simplest ways to understand how your organizational employees will adjust with the time tracking software is trying out one.

You will find numerous time tracking solutions online, but rarely will you find one that offers customers an opportunity to use them prior to investing in them.

We, at Chrometa, offer our clients with an opportunity to download a free 30-day trial prior to using them at the workplace permanently. Our free trial versions are for Windows, Mac, iPhone and Android users. You can explore all the features for 30 days to help learn if the software is fit for the organization.

Of course, you don’t want to get stuck with software that doesn’t help, and creates bigger troubles, disrupting the workflow.

What Does Your Employees Have To Say about the Time Tracking Software

Have a one-on-one conversation with your employees to determine how comfortable they are while using the software. Was it easier to complete projects with the time management tool? Was it difficult for them to adjust to it? Did it really help them in managing time? All in all, was it an impediment or an advantage?

In the end, it’s the employees who need to be comfortable and at ease with what they’re working.

Chrometa is immensely user-friendly, helping businesses schedule duties effectively. With our time tracking software, employees can take on any task and estimate the time it took to complete.

Does The Time Tracking Software Fit In The Workplace?

That’s a tricky one. You need to contemplate a host of factors to determine if a time tracking tool actually works for your organization.

Some of these factors include organizational size, kind of work and the corporate surrounding. Moreover, as a business owner, you must think of some crucial elements such as the diversity of projects, range of clients, etc.

With an online time tracking software in place, you can seamlessly record time, converting them into timesheets, billable entries, and professional invoices.

Download your free trial for Mac, Windows, Android and iPhone.

Improving Sales Efforts through Time Tracking

Business and project managers have been making use of time tracking as a trick of the trade for a long time now.

This helps them in keeping projects scheduled, ensuring optimum business health.

There are a host of other benefits that can be reaped from implementing time tracking solutions to streamline sales process. Here are a few:

Describe Your Ideal Client

When your business was launched, you possibly said yes to every company that showed interest in hiring you or your services. But things change as you progress. You tend to take on a more long-term approach that possibly involves saying no to potential patrons.

Time tracking software helps in determining which clients can prove to be the most profitable. Similarly, it helps identifying customers that take more time than they should. As you get hold of this crucial information, you can come up with a profile of around 2-3 customers based on the outstanding projects you have undertaken in the past.

Then, the sales department can utilize the profile of these clients to better understand and prioritize potential customers.

Update Your Pricing

When businesses expand over time, you find yourself better able to offer more value to customers. As a result, you may consider updating your prices as well. Thanks to time tracking, you can smoothly make changes to your pricing structure. It is a common practice for businesses to price their products/services based on their gut feelings. When you’re unaware of the amount of time being spent on each project, you can never be sure if you are charging a justified amount or losing.

Time tracking software can precisely tell you which projects are making you lose money. As a result, you can easily alter the prices in the contract.

Back Up Your Sales Pitches

Data is undoubtedly one of the few things people prefer today. With online time tracking software, you can back your sales pitch with concrete information. This strengthens the proposals for potential clients. For instance, if a potential customer tries to push back on your quoted price, you can back your pitch with data from a comparable project. Doing so will restore your client’s confidence that you aren’t merely gouging with the price.

When you’re determining the timeline of a project, time tracking can be of immense help.

With history, you can get guidance about how long a project may take to get completed. Moreover, you can clearly see how many hours it took for a project to complete, permitting you to provide a comprehensive project timeline to potential customers.

To help increase your company’s revenue, investing in a time tracking software seems viable.

At Chrometa, we provide our clients with reliable and 100% accurate time tracking solutions that allow them to passively record time, converting them into billable entries. To get your time tracker, call us now at +1 888 340 6425 ext. 4 right away.

Are You A Digital Nomad? Time Tracking Is For You

If you are sick and tired of staying all day at office, relentlessly working, you’re one of us.

Imagine to be given the privilege of working from anywhere in the world. Where would you prefer going? *think think*

When leading the life of a digital nomad, the world is your oyster. On the other hand, if you fail to exercise control over how you spend your time, you could easily lose the perks of such an opportunity.

Let’s start out by understanding what a digital nomad is.

Digital Nomads

Digital nomads are progressive and technology freaks. They are young professionals that possess the ability to redefine traditional meaning of earning.

By taking advantage of technology, they learn to work and live remotely, independently – mostly like nomads. Moreover, digital nomads have a great dependence on fast internet connection, smartphone devices, and cloud technology on a daily basis.

In case you’re thinking that picking up your laptop and heading straight out will make you a digital nomad, hold on. Majority of the digital nomads find it exciting to take a leap towards digital nomadism. This helps them to create a desired lifestyle, breaking conventional working barriers. Thanks to this lifestyle, a digital nomad gets to choose his/her place of work each day, and not get impounded in the same cubicle. This ability can tremendously help in getting more work done is less time.

Why Digital Nomads Need Time Tracking Solutions

Just like everything else, digital nomadism also has its highs and lows.

To begin with, emerging out of the conventional 9-to-5 job timings can be somewhat challenging on psychological grounds. Given the fact that humans inherently show resistance to change, working like a nomad with no permanent place can be a annoying, at least in the beginning.

Moreover, digital nomads usually fail to distinguish between work and free time. With countless surreal destinations waiting for them to be explored, work procrastination can become a common thing.

Lastly, changing places, travelling and exploring each day brings along a host of challenges, including time zone issues, visas, and not to forget, a fast internet connection.

While goal setting and minimal distraction practices will help, digital nomads most certainly need an online time tracking software or application that can help them track every minute.

Having a personal timekeeper such as Chrometa, digital nomads can improve their billable time up to 20%. So, if you’re a digital nomad and wish to improve your productivity and effectively manage time like a pro, avail our free 30-day trial today. For more information, call +1 888 340 6425.

The Best Timekeeping Software for Lawyers

Nicole is a lawyer. At 0600 sharp, she rolls out of bed and checks her smartphone. She discovers dozens of emails directed at her and team members, which apparently came in between 0100 and 0600. Nicole opts to reply to a handful of the most important, and then heads to the gym.

At the gym, she receives several call requests from clients prompting her to abandon her workout early.

At 0800, she arrives at her office, and asks assistants to print a few documents. She prints some herself to save time, and then conducts her first call at 0900.

During the call, she emails another client for information about their future call, and she also reviews multiple emails that come in. She starts another call at 1000, and IMs with colleagues during the call. Another colleague joins her on this call to observe.

She responds to more emails and also marks documents during her 1000 call, and after the call, she reviews key points with her colleague.

At 1130, Nicole marks more documents, and answers frequent short calls from clients. She finally manages to grab lunch at 1400, and continues reviewing documents and responding to emails during lunch. She hops on two calls at 1600 and 1730, and a client shows up at her office at 1800 to discuss a document review. Her day continues with similar tasks and communications, and concludes with a handful of necessary submissions at 0100.

The Importance of Timekeeping

The scenario above describes an average day, and a lawyer’s average day clearly does not afford attention to timekeeping. However, timekeeping remains a critical aspect of practice for many reasons:

  • Billing and Project Management – Not only do you need to account for services, but you also need to accurately quantify and qualify them. This aids in the overall process, and managing the financial aspects of service delivery.
  • Talent, Revenue, and Growth Management – Timekeeping provides a window into productivity and the effectiveness of current strategies and procedures. This valuable insight drives organization growth and professional development.
  • Transparency – The heavy influence of transparency on client satisfaction means it can fuel a project, or destroy it.

When timekeeping practices fall short of standards, they infect an organization and force it to constantly balance against associated losses and inaccuracies.

The Impact of Bad Timekeeping

Some estimate that less than 40% of lawyers utilize contemporaneous timekeeping solutions, and even worse, most clearly reconstruct time when preparing timesheets. Memory obviously does not serve as a potent means of capturing billable time, and the burden of delaying timekeeping creates a substantial workload.

Billable time lost to poor and sluggish recording can result in staggering losses. An Altman Weil study reveals legal professionals lose approximately 1/10 of their time when using end-of-day records. It also shows a 4-hour loss for end-of-week records, and 15-hour loss for end-of-month. Over a year, this causes a loss of 170 to 200 hours per lawyer.

Beyond substantial revenue leakage, the absence of this labor data obscures two important industry metrics:

  • The time required to complete a project compared to client expectations
  • The cost of a project compared to client budget or expectations

Financial and operational losses may pale in comparison to the effect of poor timekeeping on the client relationship. The lack of transparency and accurate records destroys the organization’s ability to leverage that information in maintaining client satisfaction. This includes not just standard records, but the level of detail employed in timekeeping. The deficiency leaves both clients and professionals frustrated because clients do not know the path to completion, and professionals do not engage clients. This leads to various problems over the course of a project, and less trust in a long-term relationship.

The Disadvantages of Common Timekeeping Solutions

The main problem in timekeeping remains archaic and exclusively active records. Beyond their inaccuracies, they damage productivity almost as much as poor billing hurts revenue. Lawyers find themselves spending far too much time performing minor administrative tasks instead of actually doing their job.

Another problem stems from the use of underdeveloped solutions. These solutions, unlike most of the best timekeeping software for lawyers, lack attention to the details of modern law practice and business. They fail to address all aspects of technology use or all qualities of practice:

  • Some may neglect mobile accommodation or the specific way users employ multiple applications in their role.
  • Some merely provide a digital version of traditional records systems, and still force the user to perform problematic tasks.
  • Some even quarantine timekeeping in a particular OS or device.

User compliance presents another challenge because many lawyers detest using these tools. When so many tools get in the way, it’s easy to see why.

Finding a Solution

Our smart solution acts as a personal assistant. It adapts to your needs, and continues to evolve with the goals of both richer sophistication and providing the best timekeeping software for lawyers. Enjoy not just automation of timekeeping, but also device and system mobility, protection of sensitive information, customization, granular records, and flexibility.

Chrometa passively captures time across platforms whether a PC, iPhone, Mac, or Android device. Its capture documents every minute of work time, and every quality of use. This includes granular focus like time spent reviewing an email, its sender or recipient, and its subject. It will capture the call you step away to make, or the time you spend away from your desk.

chrometa lawyer timekeeping

It maintains this high level of capture detail regardless of how frequently you switch applications or systems. You never need to interrupt your work rhythm and close an application, or stop to note an activity.

Employ Chrometa’s keyword-based rules for precision. Through simple tags, you set it to assign entries to specific clients, projects, or tasks.

It offers seamless integration to give you the confidence of recording everything as you switch devices, applications, and platforms. Integration also extends into one-click import/export compatibility with popular law firm management applications and other common solutions; for example, PCLaw, Clio, QuickBooks, and much more. You work totally unrestricted by solution ecosystems or proprietary technology.

Chrometa includes many other wonderful features for versatility and simplifying the timekeeping process (e.g., invoicing, and entries through email). Experience the Chrometa advantage today through our 30-day free trial.