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Using Spreadsheets To Manage Employee Timekeeping

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We’ve been keeping track of our time in a variety of ways over the past 21 years. Since the beginning of our business, we’ve used paper timesheets, spreadsheets as well as open source software and software that runs on the web. Of the various methods we’ve tested, tracking time using spreadsheets was the most laborious and also the most flexible method that’s why so many businesses still use them to this day.

After we created our own time-tracking program, Intervals, we no ever employ spreadsheets. We do have over a decade of experience working with companies who use. If you’re considering keeping track of your time with an Excel sheet of paper, these are advantages and drawbacks to take into consideration before you get started.


Spreadsheets are a universal tool.

It doesn’t really matter whether you’re employing Excel, Calc, or Google. Each spreadsheet application comes with the same list of features you require to track time. You can also collaborate with other spreadsheet users in your workplace. Companies such as Google will provide versions histories, which means you will know who changed the spreadsheet and when and also roll back changes when needed. Spreadsheets are so ubiquitous that starting using one makes sense since the majority of people are already familiar with how to use these spreadsheets.

Visit this website for an Excel template for time tracking.

Spreadsheets are simple to use.

It’s not difficult to start tracking your time using spreadsheets. Once you’ve labeled your rows and columns, entry of time takes a short time. If you stay up-to-date by updating your information on time tracking at end of every day, the process of entering time into an Excel spreadsheet is a fairly simple procedure.

Spreadsheets can be adapted to your needs.

Spreadsheets allow you to organize data on time tracking in a manner that makes sense to you. You can also reorganize the data at any point. It’s not limited to the limitations of a vendor’s database structure, or the toolkit. Because you’re recording raw data of time tracking and you are in control of the data, you have plenty of options for how the data is organized.


Spreadsheets can be time-consuming.

There was a time during the company’s history where we kept time-related records on the form of an Excel spreadsheet. Everyone on the team would send their hours for the manager of projects who would then input data into Excel. It was a lengthy and laborious process , which was susceptible to errors, particularly as we became more and more.

Sharing the spreadsheet via Google or OneDrive to allow users to modify it themselves would surely have made the process easier but it’s is not enough to make it easier to maintain it over the long haul. Be prepared to invest more time than you believe to keep the spreadsheet updated and free of errors.

Spreadsheets are a fundamental part of the software.

While spreadsheets are excellent for keeping track of data and are created in a myriad of ways, gathering useful data from them has limitations. It is possible to create customized reports with the built-in capabilities in your spreadsheet software, however it will take some time to create.

It is possible to install additional software, but your data needs to be formatted correctly for them to function. The graphs and reports that result might look great, however they’ll be deficient in intelligence. To make more relevant insights from data, you will require something that is more robust than an Excel spreadsheet.

Spreadsheets don’t scale.

A spreadsheet is simply the collection of data points arranged along two axes, and a set of macros. The task of organizing the time tracking information for each employee and work within the constraints is not without its difficulties. Are there sheets for every employee? One per project? How do you collect multiple years of information?

If your business is expanding — including hiring more employees and implementing many more projects — spreadsheets won’t expand in any way. Each issue is amplified with each new person or project that comes through the door and you’ll be overwhelmed having to cope with the demands of all this.