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Time recording software

Time recording software

I started my own practice last year and currently use excel and Thesaurus TimeLink to record timesheets. I use fixed fees for clients and simply review time against fees upon completion of assignments, but I would like to use a cheap, integrated software system rather than those available to me now.

What packages are affordable and will provide me with what i need?

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31st Aug 2010 13:34

Are you a sole trader?

If so I cannot really see the point in you wasting money on software (or indeed keeping records yourself), you will already now the time wasters (and those who you benefit from by talking to on a regular basis) or should be close enough to your clients to know anyway.  If you do decide to continue using timesheets then like other practices you will probably end up trying to justify a significant increase in fixed fees off the back off your WIP....it follows that the client probably won't be happy with such an increase and then start searching for someone priced within there budget.

I am not saying timsheets don't work (if you have several employees then you want to know what they are working on/doing etc), but you are probably far better spending time getting to know the client and his systems and offering the appropriate additional services/cashflow/budgets etc etc (with appropriate additional fees) and generally building goodwill.  

Having worked for a number of small and large practices it is very rare when i have found that the timesheet system hasn't been used and abused in one way or another to give a statistic that some wants.  And certainly where there is excess WIP depending on the client it has been written off, or used to justify a signifcant increase in the agreed fee - neither are a satisfactiry outcome. 

Use the time to get to know your client better so you can estimate your fees more accurately and also identify more fee opportunities....

 

 

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31st Aug 2010 14:49

Thanks!

That's basically what I have been doing - aiming to get new work, better clients, build trust and relationships and quote fixed prices. But I would like to use timesheets as a tool to monitor the time being spent on certain cases against the fixed price I quoted at the outset.

I have also worked for larger firms and timesheets are a pain - they either increase fees to clients without any attention to internal inefficiencies, or they result in write-offs which brings their own unique variety of plain from partners!

 

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31st Aug 2010 14:59

I agree...

The only thought I had (I have been going for about 14mths) was to keep a note of all major work at the front of the clients file - so just add to it as/when work is done, not necessarily short calls, but on the accounts/return etc....just rounding it to how many full hours it would probably be enough to show how close your quotes are to what you actually want to realise as an hourly rate.

It means you could just do it for certain jobs/clients where you feel it is taking longer than it should, or seem to be absorbing more of your time...just a thought.

 

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By chatman
01st Sep 2010 01:50

Chrometa

Tracks every second of your day. www.chrometa.com

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01st Sep 2010 10:41

Looking at the wrong thing

Instead of looking at time why not focus (measuring) the value you deliver and basing your fees?

As well as this, use project project management; agree a fixed fee for a fixed amount of work (with conditions on the client and you) and charge additional fees (change/variation orders) for work outside the original scope. 

Result = no more time sheets and higher recovery rates and happy clients!

I have a audio CD of Ron Baker talking about Value Pricing which you can register for on my Website.

Bob Harper

Portfolio Marketing

 

 

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