We're Lucky If We Get Timesheets Once A Month


Do you remember what you did on February 3rd? How about the 12th, or how about last Friday?

Neither do I.

So imagine my surprise when a client tells me they’re lucky to get timesheets once a month. Yeah, lucky. Well, they have to get timesheets monthly because they have to bill the client.

Wow waiting for timesheets so you can get your billing done.

Your staff is holding your income hostage. And their paychecks for that matter – but they don’t think of that.

And when they finally get around to entering their time days or weeks later, chances are it’s inaccurate. Actually, it is inaccurate.

To recreate what they did all those days, (and to further their own pain) your staff is probably going back through email and files they worked on (if they even care that much), to get, what they think, is an accurate read on what they accomplished, and what they feel is a giant-pain-the-ass done. . . for you.

No wonder they hate to do timesheets. Everyone is making it harder than it is.

So let me tell you a story: I worked for an agency with about 250 employees in five offices. We installed new software that was pretty easy to use. Entering time consisted of clicking on an icon and entering the number of hours worked. Clients and job numbers already there. Just click.

Then the partners did something magic. They required daily timesheets.

Then they did something else, they locked-out anyone who hit day-five without completed timesheets.

No prisoners. Compliance in five days.

There were still a couple laggards who got locked-out regularly, but they did get their timesheets done.

I’ve talked to agencies that reward (!) employees for keeping their timesheets up to date. Bonuses for doing a fundamental part of their job.

But I guess, whatever it takes, punitive measures or a bonus for doing your job; timesheets are the way an agency can tell how much time it actually takes to do a job. That translates to estimating accurately, billing a client properly, and in the end, making just a little more than you spend.

If you have agency management software, chances are it’s really easy to input time. If it isn’t, maybe it’s time to ask your software provider to help you out. Most write programs that make it a cinch to enter time – from anywhere – like an iPhone, or Android.

Then there are really no excuses.