5 Red Flags Your Time Tracking Costs Productivity

5 Red Flags Your Time Tracking Costs Productivity

Are you under the notion of being a workaholic since the lack of time takes a toll on your work? With changing dynamics in the digital age, time tracking has served to be an advantageous affair to both, employers and employees.

What boosts your productivity depends on the set of priorities. Not only this but also the right time tracking software must suit your company’s requirements and goals.

Why is Time tracking important in Organizations?

Given that Project Management is a heavy responsibility, the benefits you gain from time tracking with project management tools have a greater edge. That said, defining the deadlines, delegating tasks, and analyzing the results are three main cornerstones that make Project Management a prime weapon to achieve a higher ROI.

Micro-management is a term that’s long forgotten because it’s nearly impossible to keep a tab on every task assigned without a tool.

What made Time Tracking a success for the last few years are—

  • Billable vs. non-billable hours
  • Resource Utilization
  • Identifying resource availability
  • Total project hours vs. spent hours
  • Planned vs. actual hours

All in all, the absence of resourceful Time Tracking software can turn your dream project into a nightmare.

Are you already using a Time Tracking Tool?

Are you sure you’re tracking time properly?

Oftentimes, it’s the employees’ approach towards time tracking and not just the organization’s software that’s responsible.

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In other words, you can’t manage your time if you don’t know how to do it.

If you’re currently using a time tracking tool that hasn’t reaped you the desired fruits as yet, it’s time to watch out for some Red Flags on Time Tracking practices that could be crushing your productivity.

With the relevant fixes, you’ll get a clear picture of how effectively this information can transform your long working hours into productive hours.

1. Randomly Filling Timesheets

“Guesswork” takes the center stage as a time tracking challenge and a red flag. Most of the employees use guesswork while filling the timesheet when they forget to mark the time after task completion. It’s a natural practice to enter estimates and not the exact hours spent at work or on each task.

“Break free from “Guesstimates” as they act as senseless logging of time hours.”

Why is it important to log timesheets efficiently?

The major problem with filling timesheets is people thinking about how long they have been working and accordingly, segregating time into equal work hours for each task. This causes confusion to allocate future tasks for different projects to hit timely project delivery.

This usually happens when most of the tools available don’t allow users to focus on their work. It gets burdensome for employees to fill in when and how they worked.

For example, Orangescrum automatically tracks time on individual tasks for a week and then analyses a variation in similar task types, if any.  Not only this, but it also tracks resource availability with time duration for all activities your team has worked on.

2. No Real-time tracking / Multitasking

Firstly, having multiple projects on hand makes an employees’ life tedious. With this in mind, it’s crucial to educate employees on the priority workflows of each project. Focusing on a single project or task at a time has done more good than lurking over multiple tasks, resulting in zero productivity.

According to Tempo’s 2019 report, “Multi-tasking without time-tracking decreases productivity to 45%”.

A lot of employees are unaware of the fact that the websites and apps they visit need to be recorded. While switching between apps, using a gamut of tools and several websites, it becomes a business mandate to record such visits in timesheets and reports.

The only way to make data that reliable is some genuine time tracking software. This also means, making it easier to maintain a particular project team time tracking.

3. Misleading Time tracking reports

A 2013 survey conducted by Replicon showed that “96% reported that their employees make mistakes when reporting their working time”.

This survey was conducted on 432 professionals and must have some hard truth to it.

It’s wise for Managers to check how their employees spent their working hours (Time tracking shouldn’t be confused with ‘spying’).

Most of the employees do not understand the impact of the misleading time reports created by them.

Failing to create accurate reports for hours spent in given activities could lead to failure in allocating resources and assignments. Inaccurate data in timesheets mean wrong decisions for the management. This can reflect badly on the brand itself. It could also lead to huge budget losses for the organization.

The main reason is that employees consider time tracking as a time-wasting admin task. After all, not every tool would offer the feature of detailed reports.

It’s essential for organizations to use the software which enables generating accurate and detailed reports.

4. Ad-hoc Requests that affect Time Tracking

 With projects running at maximum capacity, a mid-project could pop up and disrupt the steady workflow of an employee’s schedule.

Firstly, let’s understand why leaving Ad-hoc projects untracked is a big deal—

  • Aids in eliminating the root cause of a particular challenge
  • Helps in justifying current headcount and lobbying for additional resources
  • Addressing urgencies that could profit business and employees alike
  • Saying “no” to lesser important tasks and rescheduling is better than keeping the task hanging

So, what’s the best way to track ad-hoc projects?

  • Creating a centralized request hub
  • Segregation of request types
  • Record the number of requestors and their priorities
  • Timing of the requests
  • Time spent by you on such requests per day/week/month
  • Defining project requirements and clarifying expectations

This also rings a bell about the famous Pomodoro technique that reflects on the importance of taking shorter breaks during regular intervals. This in turn stimulates the brain to enhance productivity. This is a famous ‘time blocking’ method that can work well with time tracking.

The idea is to strike a balance between Time Tracking and ‘Time Blocking’ that can be utilized in such scenarios.

When the focus is on quantity, productivity becomes the need of the hour!

The Managers who used Orangescrum could utilize time blocking with time tracking, thanks to its project management tool. This had a greater impact during the onset of Covid -19 crises when remote team time tracking was the only way to ease ad-hoc requests. With a lot of tasks on hand, many of Orangescrum’s users could gather ad-hoc requests to plan them into a combined task.

5. Procrastination

Procrastination is a devil that leaves you with heaps of workload.

Make sure you get rid of pending tasks asap for saving yourself the horror of workload management.

A procrastinating mind never takes tasks on hand until the deadline date commences.

Managers need to pay attention to reasons that may have caused the procrastination:

  • Low motivation
  • Lack of Training
  • Faulty assumptions
  • Poor Time Management
  • Lack of interest in the subject
  • Lack of goals

This lists a blend of skill and will issues. However, if it’s a skill issue, you need to follow a strategic approach.

The solution to this?

Time Management is the ultimate solution to Procrastination.

  • Avoid taking on heavy tasks at hand and slot some of them with easier tasks.
  • Managing your time with a personal sub-task reminder can get you on your toes.
  • Set a target for each little task (Create a checklist).

Slotting your tasks into smaller tasks can bring more clarity to your goals and align with that of the management.

Parting words

Time tracking is more than just numbers!

Working solo or with a team will definitely demand your efforts in tracking time. What’s more important is how strategically you use the software that allows you the comfort and ease of delivering projects on or before time.

An all-in-one time tracking system for delivering complex projects is what organizations need today.

Make Orangescrum a part of your Project Management journey and join our family of happy customers!

Let our Project Time Tracking tool decide for you!

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