Harvest is really good at timekeeping. One of the advantages of a cloud-based timekeeping system is your ability to access it from just about anywhere. There isn’t any excuse for not recording your time as it happens or at least once a day.
The beauty of daily timekeeping with Harvest is how you can get nearly ‘real time’ reports on how much time is being recorded on each project. But it gets even better. If you take a minute when you set up the project, you can see how the expended effort compares to your budget. Budgets in Harvest.
Here’s how it works…
- Total project hours - for small projects you might want to track your hours.
- Total project fees - if you have a maximum that you have agreed to, it might be better to track billable dollars.
- Hours per task - for bigger projects you might want to set up tasks (phases?) and track your time against those budgets.
- Hours per person - I have occasionally estimated a project based on some assumptions about how much time each person would need to complete their assignments. Hours per person would be good feedback.
- Fees per task - my personal favorite for any project that I think of in terms of phases or that I plan to bill by phases.
You will note that you can get reminders. I start out with a low percentage and then bump it up after each reminder to make sure that I am watching the progress. Each time a reminder arrives, I look to see if the work we have accomplished is comparable to the budget used. If not, it is time for remedial action to get back on track.
See this post to see how to do it right.
Remember Harvest pays for itself just doing timekeeping. This benefit is a bonus.