Business Planning 101: A Timely Tip

In addition to working with our clients on Tax Planning, we also help with business growth and revenue planning. That means that we frequently see patterns of overlooked business improvement opportunities across a variety of industries. When we do, we try to share them, because they may be helpful to you. One opportunity to start improving your business involves time tracking and reporting.

You are probably tracking your time on each project or job – or at least tracking the time your employees and contractors are working – but what are you doing with that data? Are you using it to improve your business? If you’re not, you should be. Insight into your business is crucial for making the best improvements to it, and time on a project is directly linked to productivity and profitability.

The Importance of Tracking Time

Time tracking enables you to make more intelligent decisions about how you price and run projects. If a project is particularly time consuming and requires more man hours, you will have to either staff it for a longer time or put more (human and technology) resources on it to reduce the turnaround time. When you know how much time is needed you can price your project more accurately and avoid a budget short down the road.  The profitability of a project is directly impacted by time.

Time is also key to how you schedule both your team and your own days. If you schedule properly, you can be profitable, grow your business and enjoy greater balance in your life. Because time is also key to productivity, insight, and a healthy workflow you can also decide which tasks or projects you want to take on, and which projects need to carry a higher price. When you know which tasks take the most time, you can begin to reflect on whether that time is well spent and whether those projects are truly profitable.

Overcoming Obstacles

The two main reasons businesses do not track time are the concern that employees won’t react well to it and not having a tool in place to track and analyze time. On the first concern, that your team won’t like it, I don’t think this is likely to happen. People are used to reporting their time and it’s easy enough to explain to anyone who seems concerned about it.  As far as a tool for tracking time, if you are using QuickBooks, you have a built in Time Sheet and Timer module. You may have additional tools available if you are set up for payroll. We can help you decide what you need if you don’t have the tools in place.

“Time is money,” and every business leader should be paying attention to time – and productivity – metrics. Let Hundley Advisors show you how time is impacting your business growth.