The Effective Executive

Chrometa Effective Executive review

                                                                          Be effective, not busy!

What sounds like the memorable “Don’t think! Feel!” Bruce Lee line is actually the main lesson from Peter Drucker’s The Effective Executive. I recently read this classic after finding out it was the number one book recommendation by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.

Feel!, don't think!

The book is concise and starts with the good news: effectiveness can be learned.
In it, Drucker explains that in his forty-five years of experience he has never seen a natural effective leader or executive. Effectiveness is a skill and we learn it the same way we learn any skill: practice, practice and practice some more. He even lays out the five habits we need to acquire to become more effective.

Habit number one: “Know thy time”

Our most valuable asset is time. Almost anything that is lost can be gained back: money, friendships, health… Once we lose time, it’s gone forever; so, we must learn to optimize it. Drucker lays out the three time management principles: Track, Manage and Consolidate.
Contrary to popular belief, we must track before planning. Tracking our time will reveal the time wasting activities, all those periods of time when we’re not in “Deep Work”mode (another great book by Cal Newport, by the way), checking our emails for the 10th time, toggling between the draft document we have to send and the latest headline from our favorite news website….
At this point I can’t help mentioning Chrometa!
Chrometa will do just that: give you insight on what you and your team are actually doing, shed light on the billable work while also showing an unbiased tally of distractions.

Feel!, don't think!

Distraction is unfortunately the norm, not the exception. According to this survey, the average worker wastes up to three hours a day. That’s 759 hours each year!
This is not only affecting business revenue but also employee motivation, which has a cost in the long run.
Once we have a clear picture of our time, we need to find out how to better manage it. This starts with eliminating all the time wasters.  In the words of Tai Lopez: “Double down on what works, crush what doesn’t!”
And finally consolidate: we must create large time blocks during which we focus on one single activity, which is what Drucker calls “deep work”. I was actually surprised to find out that Drucker recommends half a day to two weeks of deep work. Then I remembered that my most productive days are those when I worked on one thing only, until completion.


Habit number two: “What can I contribute?”

To be effective, we must ask ourselves: what should we be effective at? What is expected from us in our job, by our customers, coworkers or hierarchy? And how are our actions going to benefit others? Answering these questions helps us define the “why” of business strategy:
How are we adding value to our customers?
How are we keeping our employees motivated, happy and productive?
How are we increasing the owner’s return on investment?


Habit number three: “Making Strength Productive”

Abraham Lincoln famously said that “if the only weakness of General Grant is him drinking then I will gladly send him a case of his favorite drink, just as long as he keeps on winning”. In today’s world, this translates into assigning the most qualified person to each position. Rather than trying to minimize any weaknesses among our teams, we should maximize the existing strengths until all weaknesses become irrelevant.

Lincoln Grant Drink

Obviously there are some weaknesses that need to be addressed, chief among them are the lack of integrity and character.

Habit number four: “First Things First”

This habit is so powerful that Stephen Covet mentions it in his bestseller The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and wrote a whole book titled First Things First. It’s a simple and powerful habit: do the first things first, second things? Not at all!
To get into “Deep Work” mode during the long time chunks Drucker recommends, we need to put all our focus and energy in getting the most important thing done. It means being clear about our priorities and acting on them. This is easier said than done, but with practice and some simple tools, we can master this habit. I particularly like the “Time Management Matrix” (aka “Eisenhower Matrix”, after the 34th President of the United States who created this matrix; Stephen Covey later popularized it with “The 4 Quadrants” technique)
The general idea is to categorize your planned activities within one of the four quadrants in the illustration below.

Productivity Quadrant

QUADRANT 1 (Q1):  urgent AND important
Examples include: fire drills, deadlines, client/deal emergency, etc.
Best practice: avoid by being proactive (Q2) and manage effectively & efficiently once the Q1 event arises.
QUADRANT 3 (Q3):  urgent, time-consuming, but with no real purpose or tangible result
Q3 events typically lead to frustration, fatigue and a sense of uselessness
Examples include: email interruptions, useless reports, long-winded meetings, etc.
Best practice: avoid completely.
QUADRANT 4 (Q4): complete time-wasters
An hour spent in Q4 is an hour gone with nothing of value contributed to yourself or anyone else
Examples include: TV, gossip, social media, pointless Youtube videos
Best practice: include (for a “mental break”) but limit extensively.
QUADRANT 2 (Q2): This is where you want to spend most of your time. It’s pro-active and value-additive to yourself and your environment (work, family, social circles).
Examples include:productive work,quality time with friends and family, proactivity, meditation, working out, proper nutrition, relationship building, reading & education, creativity, etc.
Best practice: spend the vast majority of your time in Q2.
This is obviously a simplified way to categorize activities as each task could also be judged by the level of required effort, available resources (delegating work to your staff for example), complexity etc. It is good to notice thoughthat we usually spend so much time and energy in Q1 that we get burned out and seek relaxation in Q4. So next time we found ourselves in Q4, let’s quickly shift to Q2.

And finally habit number five: “Better decision making”

I dreaded reading this chapter at first. Business articles about decision-making processes tend to be complex, long and boring but this one was a nice surprise and could be summed up in three words: Less is More.
Drucker states that effective executives make fewer decisions by identifying what he calls “Boundary Conditions”. In layman’s terms it means to find the one decision that makes the rest easier or irrelevant.
Drucker relays the story of New York power outages in 1965. One night, The New York Times had to move their printing over to New Jersey. This left them with only an hour and a half to print the papers. However, just as the paper was going to press, the executive editor and his assistants began arguing about the hyphenation of a single word. This argument took 48 minutes to resolve, so, in the end, only half of the press run could be completed. While to most this seems like an egregious waste of time, the boundary conditions of the paper were: The New York Times is the standard-bearer for American English grammar. In this light, the decision was correct and aligned with the values of the organization.
What a great way to end the book: boundary conditions help us make effective decisions once (and only once) as we concentrate our energy (first things first) on making our strengths so strong we make the best contribution to our organization.
So join us here to identify your time wasters (dreaded Q4 quadrant) and take an honest look at how you and your team spend the day, plan accordingly and play on your team’s strengths to make this an effective and happy day!

Timesheets from the past

Outlook from the past in Chrometa; Credit: slamiticon

Microsoft Outlook activity has always been a good indicator of how much time you spend working on a project or matter: the work you do on any given day is very often linked to the emails you read and compose; the meetings in Outlook calendar are time spent working for a client.

With the Chrometa add-in for Outlook, time spent on emails you are reading, composing or replying to is automatically captured.

Now what if you wanted to go back in time, i.e. before Chrometa was on your PC? Well, thanks to Outlook exports, this is now possible!

When an Outlook app – such as Outlook 2016 – is installed on your computer, you can use it to move emails, contacts, and calendar items from one email account to another. With Chrometa, you can use this export feature to create a timesheet. Here’s how:

First export Outlook items by creating a .pst file, which is an Outlook Data File that contains your messages and other Outlook items and is saved on your computer. You can select the primary Inbox or any other folder (filtered by an email address for e.g., or a date range …)

  1. On the File menu, point to New, and then click Outlook Data File.
  2. Click Office Outlook Personal Folders File (.pst), and then click OK.
  3. In the Create or Open Outlook Data File dialog box, in the File name box, type a name for the file, and then click OK.

Select then the pst file in Chrometa: Click on “PST File”
And finally click on “Process” , your emails are now time entries in Chrometa!

To turn on automatic categorization, add email addresses to your Chrometa clients and Chrometa will assign each email to the correct client.

Chrometa App for Android: Automatic syncing is here!

Android Time is Money

As professionals, we all know how important being able to log professional calls is. After all, we spend up to 30 hours of our work time on calls and text messages each month. Considering that professionals charge an average of $150 per hour, I’ll let you do the math (yup, you are right, that’s roughly $5,000)! Those hours are hours that MUST be tracked and logged. So, with that goal in mind, we set to create a Chrometa app for Android that logged phone calls and text messages, and assigned them to the relevant clients and/or matters. And the app did just that!. The challenge, though? We needed to remember to open the app on our phones and tap the “sync phone calls” button (when we needed the calls synced with our account)! With our crazy workloads and schedules and with timekeeping often being such a tedious task, having to remember to do all that was definitely not ideal.

Worry no more! The new version of our Chrometa app for Android now automatically syncs your call and text history for you. Every two hours, your calls and texts are automatically sent to your online Chrometa account, where, as per the rules you created, they are automatically assigned to the relevant client.

If you already have the Chrometa app on your Android smartphone, simply go to the Playstore and update the app.
If you do not have the Chrometa app on your Android smartphone yet and wish to install it, go to the Playstore and search for “Chrometa”, then click on “install”.

We are pretty sure that this update will make your billing process a little easier and save you some valuable time but feel free to share your thoughts about it with us.

With the new version of our Chrometa app for Android, you don’t have to lift a finger! Well, actually, you do, but only to make a call or write a text ;)!

Slack Time Tracking That’s 100% “Passive”

Slack time tracking that’s 100% automatic thanks to Chrometa?

Thanks to our always-talented CTO Chihab, the answer is now: “Yes.”

You can now connect your Chrometa account up with Slack time tracking, which will let our time tracker “see” and capture the time your spending in various Slack channels. It’s a one-click setup – just set it up once, and you’re good to go.

Slack Time Tracking Example

Slack time tracking

And More Time Tracking Integrations

Here’s are more systems for practice management, accounting, and billing that you can now integrate Chrometa with as well:

  • Harvest
  • CosmoLex
  • Clio
  • Office 365
  • FreshBooks
  • QuickBooks Online
  • … and 13 more.

What’s Next in Passive Time Tracking?

Here’s the feature request list that we work from when prioritizing “what’s next.” We make it available to users like you so that you can help suggest, comment on and “vote up” features that you like best.
Click here to contribute to our product roadmap here.

iPhone Time Tracking is New, Right?

Right. We developed a “VoIP app” that will help you capture your phone calls and text messages directly from your iPhone and sync them up with your Chrometa account as time entries.

And we’ve already released three new versions of the app since we spoke last a few weeks back. Thanks to feature requests from astute iPhone users who have lended a hand with suggestions.

If you’re an iPhone user, and you haven’t had a chance to take our new iOS app for a spin, here it is again:

iphone time tracking

1:1 Timekeeping Training

Our expert trainer Lori is off in New Orleans this week living up life at Clio’s Cloud Conference. She’ll be back next week, and available to help you with your Chrometa training questions. (Make sure you talk really loud on the call to help with any lingering French Quarter headaches!)

Here’s the link to schedule your 1:1 session (open to all users).

Can I Get a Free 30-Day Trial of This Amazing Time Tracking App?

Of course. You can click here to start your free trial, and implement 100% “passive” timekeeping today.

time keeping app

Lawyer Time Tracking: Is Poor Time Keeping Killing Your Profits?

Time tracking has long been the bane of lawyers, yet this tiresome task is essential in ensuring you’re getting the money you’re owed. Unfortunately, traditional time recording is riddled with inaccuracies and challenges, which means you could be shorting yourself.

Just how much? Studies believe it could be as much as a third of your deserved funds.

If you’re no stranger to pen and paper record keeping, you already know what a cumbersome, confusing process time tracking can be. Between reading and answering emails, making phone calls, and checking voicemail, there’s no shortage of small tasks that quickly add up to billable hours. Yet many law firms are missing these prime opportunities for billing because they have no easy way of tracking the amount of time spent on these quick (yet constant) actions.

Sure, there have been timekeeping helpers to come along, including timer software you can install on your computer. But given that you need to click a button each time you start and stop a task, these are generally no more useful than a stopwatch.

That’s why many lawyers are turning to time tracking apps, like Chrometa. It’s quiet, unobtrusive, accurate, and best of all, is helping lawyers build their profits with zero extra work.

How Does a Lawyer Time Tracking App Work?

Before computers (and in some cases, even now), law firms had to dedicate time to manually recorded the time spent on actions. However, documenting the value and actions that make up your legal services in five-minute bursts is nothing short of exasperating. In fact, you may find that this method means you’re spending nearly as much time on time recording as you are on helping your clients.

It’s no way to run a successful law firm, which is why many lawyers estimate their time spent on tasks and bill according to their best guesses. This is certainly a preferable method compared to the time suck of the fine tooth comb, yet it presents another, more costly challenge: missed billable hours, and lots of them.

Timekeeping apps like Chrometa eliminate some of the billing conundrum by tracking and logging easily overlooked activities so you don’t have to. Their secret lies in automation:

  1. You install the app on your desktop computer (Mac or PC) or smartphone (iPhone or Android).
  2. The app tracks how much time you spend on certain tasks, including reading and replying to emails, making phone calls, conducting research, and other small yet significant tasks.
  3. The app also integrates with other systems, including QuickBooks Online, FreshBooks, and more to broaden your time tracking abilities and reduce manual entry.
  4. As a result, you get a compiled report detailing how much time you spent on certain tasks. You may find that you’re doing far more work than you’ve been billing for, which can help you increase your profits without any extra effort on your part.

How Reliable are Timekeeping Apps?

There’s no shortage of timekeeping software on the market, but they’re not all created equal. Despite their technological foundation, some require you to manually activate and deactivate the timer each time, thus encroaching on your natural workflow and posing no better than a pen and paper.

Others will log your activities but cannot differentiate tasks between clients; rather, you’ll get an overview of how much time you spend on email, phone calls, and research, and it will be up to you to assign that time to individual clients. And some apps don’t communicate across devices, adding another layer of complexity to your timekeeping tasks.

Chrometa, in particular, relies on client-linked keywords to determine which tasks are associated with specific clients. Instead of compiling a one-dimensional listing of time spent on tasks, the app separates the actions into phones and emails per client to give you a more accurate representation of your workload. In addition, Chrometa offers full synchronization across platforms and devices to give you a seamless experience no matter how you choose to work.

Chrometa eliminates the potential for human error, giving you an accurate representation of how you spend your time.

What Other Benefits Do Time Tracking Apps Provide?

Aside from the obvious financial benefits, Chrometa gives you insight not just into your own client work, but also the productivity throughout your law firm. If you’ve ever been curious as to how much time your office team is spending helping clients, a timekeeping app can take out the guesswork.

Even if an employee spends 10 minutes a day on social media or checking personal email at work, that’s over 2,000 minutes per year, or more than an entire 40-hour work week. Multiply that by the number of people at your law firm, and you can easily see the value of using every minute wisely.

When you understand how you and your team are using your time, you’re better positioned to improve your service to your clients. In addition, when you are being paid accurately, the increase in revenue can also help strengthen your service, whether it’s upgrading technology or being able to afford better talent for your team.

Yes, a timekeeping app can be that powerful.

In Closing

Lawyer time tracking shouldn’t be complicated, nor should you have to spend as much time trying to get paid as you spend helping your clients. However, changing the way something has always been done can seem scary, even if there’s promise of a larger reward.

If that’s how you feel, start small. Take a time tracking app for a test drive before you commit to revamping your entire recording system. Chrometa offers a free 30-day trial to let you test its features and discover how you and your team are using office hours.

You may find that your missed billing opportunities more than justify the small expense of continuing to use Chrometa. Packages start at just $20 a month, and can easily pay for itself several times over by helping you ensure your hard work never slip through the cracks again.

lawyer time tracking
Document work, top view, flat design

Attorney Timekeeping: Are You Billing Enough Hours?

Most attorneys make their money by billing “by the hour,” but keeping an accurate record of your billable work often proves cumbersome. Instead, most attorney timekeeping is based on guesses or averages, often to the favor of the client. As a result, attorneys and other professionals typically only bill for about 67% of the work they do, losing nearly a third of their potential income to poor timekeeping.

That said, it may come as no surprise that many attorneys are shorting themselves when it comes to billing the appropriate number of hours, especially if you rely on a manual timekeeping system. Having multiple clients only complicates your records, leading to a higher possibility for inaccuracy.

If you’ve struggled with timekeeping in the past, you’ll be glad to know there’s an easier way. Timekeeping apps, like Chrometa, were designed with attorneys and other professionals in mind, and has forever changed time recording as you know it.

How a Timekeeping App Works

Changing the way you’ve always done something can be overwhelming, stressful, and sometimes downright scary. To make matters worse, there’s an abundance of technology that promises to simplify tasks and save time, yet often only complicate your existing methods and falls short of your expectations.

Timekeeping apps actually do what they’re promised. For example, here’s how Chrometa works:

  1. Users can install Chrometa on their PC, Mac, iPhone or Android phone.
  2. The app is triggered each time you send an email, make a phone call, or work on your computer
  3. While you work, the app runs in the background counting every second you spend on tasks, including reading emails, making notes, performing research, and more.
  4. Chrometa compiles its findings into an easy-to-read report, breaking down how much time you spent on specific tasks (email, phone calls, etc). The report integrates seamlessly across multiple devices so you won’t miss a minute of productivity.

Attorney Timekeeping Pitfalls You Can Avoid

Despite the existence of automated restaurants, driverless cars, and wireless everything, many attorneys still largely rely on Excel sheets and paper records to keep track of their time on client work.  True, manual timekeeping does have its benefits, like easy preparation or quick accessibility, but those benefits come at a cost – nearly a third of your potential income, according to timekeeping studies. What could you do with a 33% raise?

Using a timekeeping app offers plenty of benefits that far outweigh any costs. As a result, you can avoid several common pitfalls of time recording errors:

Accounting Mistakes

Having multiple clients is great for your firm, but also increases your risk for timekeeping errors. The APA estimates that companies without automated timekeeping system see up to an 8% human error rate on payroll. To put this in perspective, a client case worth $10,000 would be short up to $800. Multiply this by the number of clients you see in a year, and this quickly amounts to a serious financial loss.

Manual Preparation

Automating simple tasks like calculating billable hours can help you spend less time doing things that aren’t contributing to your bottom line. It might not seem like much, but logging your time spent on tasks for each client translates into valuable minutes each day that could be better used.

In addition, using paper records leaves them vulnerable to spills, smudges, and other accidents that may require additional time fixing. Even if you spend a total of 10 minutes every week preparing each record, you could be wasting hours.

Poor Employee Productivity

Passive timekeeping isn’t just for your own benefit. If you have a team of paralegals or other office staff, it’s an easy way to gauge how they’re utilizing their time on the clock. Even a mere five minutes of “wasted” time each day can add up to over 6,000 minutes (or 105 hours) each year per employee.

While you may not mind employees checking their personal email or glancing at social media during the workday, monitoring their time can help you identify potential areas for improvement. For instance, you’ll see if your team is missing deadlines due to work-related activities or if they’re spending more time on their personal agendas.

In addition, passive timekeeping can further help you bill your clients accurately based on the work your team is doing. Even if you’re an expert at documenting your time, your team may struggle with this task and could affect your earning potential.

The Benefits of Passive Timekeeping are Priceless

Aside from avoiding the downsides of manual timekeeping, passive timekeeping offers a multitude of benefits that translate into better results, both for you and your clients:

More Time for Tasks that Matter

Unlike time clocks and manual recording, there’s no action required from you to initiate recording. Everything is done automatically to give you one less thing to worry about, so you can focus more on your clients and less on the clock.

Low Cost for Peace of Mind

Chrometa offers a risk-free 30-day trial to let you test-drive the app before you commit. This gives you time to understand how it works and gauge its accuracy to see how it truly benefits your accounting practices. You can cancel at any time during the trial if it doesn’t live up to your expectations, and will cost you nothing. If you find you can’t live without it, you can get started for as little at $20 a month.

Happier Clients

When you can eliminate stress and mundane tasks from your plate, you are better positioned to provide your clients with the best service possible, and it won’t go unnoticed.

In Closing

There’s no doubt that attorney timekeeping is riddled with areas for improvement, especially when it comes to ensuring you are paid as much as you should be owed. When you can take the guesswork out of timekeeping, you can rest easy knowing you’re getting paid for your services. You may find that your pen-and-paper method is costing you more than you might have thought – the only way to know for sure is to discover it for yourself.

Sign up for your 30-day free trial of Chrometa here.

How a Time Keeping App Can Revolutionize Your Productivity

If you’re a freelancer that works per project or a professional that doesn’t punch a time clock but still needs to record billable hours, you know first hand how time-consuming it can be to record how long you work on any particular project. It gets even more complex and tedious when you’re dealing with multiple clients across the span of a single work day, fielding telephone calls, writing emails, and attending meetings. You need a time keeping app.

For all too many of us, recording hours worked for multiple clients involves manual timekeeping. Keeping a running tally of time devoted to this phone call and time spent drafting that email reply is certainly time-consuming – especially if you’re relying on an elaborate Excel spreadsheet or even a collection of notepad scraps. Even worse, this usually involves keeping a close eye on the clock or the use of a manual stopwatch, truly a miserable experience – and one that’s all too prone to incorrect and inaccurate time keeping.

So what’s a harried professional to do? Well, instead of spending more time managing your billable hours than actually working on projects for clients, you can make use of a time keeping app like Chrometa.

Manual Versus Automatic Time Keeping Apps

Manual timekeeping is nothing but a chore, requiring a level of diligence that just isn’t humanly possible in order to record billable hours reliably. Moreover, recording time worked manually costs companies money – fiddling with spreadsheets and stopwatches can result in losing track of as much as 33% of your billable time. In other words, you’re losing one hour’s worth of pay for every three hours you work. That’s simply unacceptable.

So how does Chrometa and other time keeping apps improve the process of recording billable hours? The secret is in automation. Time recording apps that feature automated timekeeping functions can keep track of how long you work on a project, such as drafting an email or business document, in order to keep an exact record of how many minutes you put in on each project.

Originally, most time keeping applications required the click of a mouse button to start and stop tracking time – primitive but still head-and-shoulders above manually recording start and stop times. Additionally, most of these software programs were relegated to the realm of desktops or laptops, minimizing their efficacy when it comes to the kind of mobile working that modern professionals engage in on their phones and tablets. However, the dark ages of time keeping apps has come to an ignominious end.

Keep Track Wherever, Whenever, and Without Fail

Anybody can design a Windows or Apple program that lets you click a digital clock face to record how much time you’ve spent working on a specific project. Fewer allow you to categorize certain tasks with client-linked keywords to organize the time you spend on projects into client-specific timesheets. Fewer still have full-figured, robust mobile apps on both iOS and Android that backup and sync seamlessly with your desktop app. Guess which company provides all three?

If you guessed Chrometa, congratulations – you’ve been paying attention. As far as time recording functionality goes, Chrometa breaks the mold by being as passive as possible – once you set up its keyword-based approach to organizing and cataloging time spent working on projects, the app goes to work behind the scenes, tallying up the minutes spent on each project and assigning them to the correct client in its database.

The inclusion of a mobile app in Chrometa’s arsenal means that you can record time spent on more than just drafting documents. With Chrometa’s ability to record and categorize time spent on client calls or time spent away from your desk in meetings, there’s virtually no instance in which this time recording software won’t provide data for billing hours accurately to your clients.

Providing You with Flexibility and Security

There’s even more to Chrometa, though. While its core functionality is remarkably innovative on its own, the app provides high levels of safety and security to its users as well. The Chrometa service lives in the cloud, which means that it offers the flexibility to be implemented across as many different devices as needed. Changing desktop workstations or replacing a mobile phone? Simply log in to Chrometa and you’ll still have access to all your data and settings.

This high level of accessibility does, of course, come with its own dangers, but a cloud-based time keeping app that isn’t secure isn’t going to be very successful. Chrometa addresses availability and security issues by using 128-bit encryption and maintaining synced backup data on all your devices. With an uptime of 99.9% and dedicated 24/7 support, Chrometa is the time recording app that’s perfect for anyone who’s grown tired of the grind of billing your own hours without having to worry about whether their time keeping solution is safe and secure.

Time Recording Apps Allow You to Provide Better Service

You would think that all this functionality would be prohibitively expensive, but that couldn’t be farther than the truth. Basic Chrometa packages start at less than $20 a month and include access to the app on both a desktop and a mobile device. The company even offers a free 30-day trial.

Taking the drudgery out of recording your billable hours as accurately as possible is nothing short of liberating. Knowing that you have a passive time keeping system working behind the scenes, recording your time data and categorizing it for you with hardly any input needed, provides you the space to breathe – and to provide better service to your clients.

Taking the guesswork out of time keeping, all thanks to a straightforward, automated time recording app, leads to a myriad of benefits. Professionals that work in a low-stress environment – or at least in one where steps have been taken to minimize stresses like being responsible for time keeping – are going to be naturally more productive both in quantity and quality of work. They’re also happier and feel more fulfilled, especially knowing that an hour worked is an hour paid.

Click here to get started with Chrometa today.

time keeping app
time keeping app

Chrometa: the Time Recording App to Rule Them All

Billable hours – that little phrase is music to the ears of many an individual. For quite a few of us, an hour worked is an hour paid; from office workers to high-powered professionals, keeping track of how long you’ve been on the job (via a time recording app) directly impacts how much you earn.

In many cases, timekeeping is handled in a centralized manner. The generations-old practice of factory workers – or more accurately, in our day and age, retail employees – punching a time clock to keep a record is still used today, but it’s not appropriate for all settings. Freelancers who bill their clients by the hour, for example, are required to keep careful records themselves. Likewise, legal professionals like attorneys need to keep track of how many billable hours they spend on each of their client’s cases.

So if you’re not punching a clock to keep track of your billable hours, what’s the best solution? Some people keep written records of the time spent on scraps of paper across their desks, while others enter time spent into Excel spreadsheets. Others use time-keeping software on their computers, or simply the stopwatch function on their mobile phones. While many of these solutions may work, there are better ways to record time for billing purposes – and the best way is Chrometa.

An Innovative Time Recording App

Beginning its life as a service that tracked your time while working on your PC, Chrometa was already distinguishable from other time keeping software programs because it was incredibly advanced. Instead of requiring manual timer starting and stopping, Chrometa’s desktop time recording app provides seamless, passive time keeping, using keyword-based rules to automatically sort, categorize, and record time spent writing emails, answering phone calls, attending meetings, or doing any work for any client.

But not all professionals spend time chained to their desks. In fact, thanks to mobile working and connectivity, many work outside of an office environment, making it impractical to use a PC-based time keeping app. That’s why Chrometa designed an innovative mobile app to record billable activities anywhere and everywhere. The mobile app then automatically syncs with the user’s Chrometa account, ensuring that billable hours remain as accurate as possible.

Reporting and Integrations

Whether you’re using the desktop app or the mobile version, Chrometa offers the ability to export your time records in a number of different formats. The app is fully integrated with Xero, Sage Timeslips, QuickBooks, FreshBooks, and Basecamp. Chrometa can also export to CSV or Excel spreadsheet, perfect for use in corporate billing programs – and if your firm or company uses a homegrown system or other third-party application, Chrometa’s open API makes manual integration easy.

Safe, Secure, and Affordable Time Keeping

Chrometa provides an invaluable service, but a time recording app that’s priced out of your budget is no help to anyone. That’s why full access to Chrometa – including access to the service on one computer and one mobile device – starts as low as $19.99 a month for an individual. Team rates are identical – $19.99 per member – and services include email and phone support, live chat support at least six days a week, and a free 30-day trial.

On top of Chrometa’s affordable pricing model, the service offers high levels of safety and security. Chrometa maintains cloud-based records on servers with 99.9% uptime, 24/7 monitoring, and daily backups, and security features include 128-bit encryption. Additionally, Chrometa maintains a copy of your time recording data locally on your PC or mobile device to ensure unerringly accurate time entries every time and all the time.

Thanks to this time recording app’s flexibility, functionality, and affordability, Chrometa makes an excellent choice for not just freelancers but entire firms and companies that need to manage billable hours across a wide variety of clients. The added safety and security features are more than just icing on the cake – it’s more of what sets Chrometa apart from typical time keeping methods or even rival software programs.

Good for the Goose, Good for the Gander

No one wants to sell themselves short when it comes to billable hours. At the same time, the importance of charging clients and customers accurately for time spent working on projects cannot be overstated. Yet using a traditional time tracking solution creates stress in a freelancer or an associate by adding yet one more task to an already high workload.

Whether it’s recording work time manually with a pad and paper or a stopwatch and a spreadsheet, the pressures created to ensure billing accuracy can often eclipse the substantive work being done. Having to record time throughout the day by hand is more than a mere annoyance, especially while trying to support clients and customers in a fast-paced working environment prone to regular interruption; it soon becomes an Atlas-like burden.

The result of inaccurate time keeping amidst the unavoidable chaos takes an unmistakable toll. Research has shown that many professionals only bill around 67% of the hours they work. This means that you’re only billing two hours for every three worked. This has a monetary cost for not just yourself but for the company or firm for which you work. Meanwhile, Chrometa is so accurate – and so seamless – that using it can increase your billable time by 20% or more while actually working fewer hours. This provides benefits to everyone – better service to your clients and more accurate billed hours for yourself.

The Future of Time Recording Apps

The transformative power of Chrometa can completely redesign your freelance business or professional practice practically overnight. Thanks to its ability to work across both mobile and desktop platforms seamlessly, simplify and automate time entries, and export time data in formats that can then be used to generate professional invoices or accurate time sheets, Chrometa is hands-down the among the best time tracking tool available today. Combined with its highly affordable pricing structure – and the fact that you can access a 30-day free trial – Chrometa is easily the preferred solution for anyone who values accurate time keeping in a professional environment.

Click here to start a 30-day free trial of Chrometa now.

time recording app

New Integration: Connecting Chrometa with Harvest

Our new integration with Harvest brings automatic timekeeping to an already simple and robust time tracking, expense tracking, and invoicing solution. Here’s how to set it up.

Chrometa Demo: 100% Automatic Timekeeping

Not yet familiar with Chrometa? Here’s a 1-minute overview:

Free 30-Day Trial

Ready to start capturing time automatically, and sending it to Harvest seamlessly? You’ll capture more time, more accurately – and you’ll spend less time reconciling your time too.

Click this link to sign up for your Chrometa account, and take advantage of our 30-day free trial:

Now, Connect to Harvest

Go to Account – Integrations in Chrometa. Locate Harvest in the top row, and click the Connect button:

Next, tell Harvest that it’s OK for Chrometa to access your Harvest account:

Next, Import Your Harvest Projects

You’ll then be redirected to your Projects tab where you can import your Harvest project list into Chrometa. Click the Import From Harvest button in the top row to do this:

Then, Assign Time Entries to Your Projects

You’ll now be able to assign time entries to your Harvest projects (which now exist as Chrometa projects, too). You can do this by using Rules as well as the Move To Project dropdown from the Time Summary screen.

Finally, Export Your Time Entries to Harvest

As you complete your Timesheet, you can move your time entries over to Harvest for a given day, or even a given week. Just use the Export dropdown from the Timesheet view to send your entries across the wire to Harvest:


They’ll appear in Harvest as if they were created there in the first place!

You can use Chrometa to supplement your timekeeping within Harvest. In case you forgot to enter your time in as you worked on something, or you forgot to start the timer, you’ll have a “safety net” of time entries that were passively captured for you – which can easily be sent over to Harvest by following these steps.

3 New Chrometa Features for February

Here’s Chrometa’s February 2017 product update – we’ve got three new features to discuss!

Have an idea or request? Please click here to get a look at our product roadmap and help contribute to our product prioritization.

Now let’s talk about our new Office 365 integration…
#1: Capture Outlook 365 Email Time
Outlook 365 users can now enjoy the advanced “email time capture” support that regular Outlook, Gmail and Mac Mail users have. Just connect Chrometa up with your Outlook 365 account, and we’ll capture the time you spend reading and composing each email along with the:
  • To
  • From 
  • Subject Line
To connect your Chrometa account with Outlook 365, click Integrations – Office 365 – Connect.
Submit Feature Requests Here
Have an idea for a new Chrometa feature or integration? Want to see our current list and product roadmap? Click here to submit your thoughts and “vote up” ideas that you like best.
#2: Recent Projects in Dropdown
Some of you have asked for a list of Recent Projects to appear first in theMove To Project dropdown. Next time you use this dropdown, you’ll see the last 5 projects you assigned time to at the top of the list – with the other projects below in alphabetical order as they were previously. 
And don’t forget you can also use the Active Search box to narrow down both lists. Just start typing the name of your Client or Projects and the list will filter automatically.
#3: New Timeline Options
The Timeline view is a play-by-play of what you did throughout the day. It’ll give you a breakdown all the way down to the minute when needed.
We’ve been gradually adding additional “toggling” options to the top of the Timeline view. We now have:
  • Latest first (to flip the view to most recent entries on top)
  • Hide categorized (for time that’s already been bucketed)
  • Highlight uncategorized (for time that has NOT yet been bucketed)
  • Collapse block hours (to collapse entries down to their hour blocks)
If you don’t look at the Timeline view often, here’s a shortcut for you: To select a group of entries in a row, hold down the Shift key while you click the start and end of your activity. That will highlight all entries in between.
Once you have a run of entries highlighted, you can then categorize and annotate them at the same time using the Move To Project dropdown – and they’ll roll up to your Timesheet as one entry.
30-Day Free Trial, Free 1:1 Training
If it’s been awhile since you looked at Chrometa, we still offer a 30-day free trial free trial along with complimentary 1:1 training sessions (click this link to schedule yours today). 
Any questions about what we’re working on? Please reply directly to this email and let me know.
Review Chrometa & Next Month’s on Me

If you’re able to take a few minutes to leave an online review, your next month’s subscription is on me (and maybe more if you have time to leave more reviews!)

Here are some websites and forums we’d appreciate you considering

And if you’re a Chrometa for Android or iPhone user, we’ll gladly toss in an extra free month for an App Store review, too:

Thanks so much for your support!