The idea of time tracking hurts more than the reality of it. The initial resistance to tracking time is normal – you’re changing habits which takes some getting used to. But in reality, can you and your team (and organization) afford not to know where the precious resource of your time goes—and how it affects your business?
17 reasons why tracking your time improves your project management skills
1. It’s the ultimate truth teller. You’ll soon learn how long that “two-minute task” really takes and plan accordingly.
2. You’ll become a better project estimator—a key skill for project managers. A key skill for anyone who works on projects.
3. The only way to improve a process is to measure it.
4. Time is money. If you’ve going to be scrupulous about your budget, be scrupulous about your hours.
5. Time tracking sets clear objectives. If you know how you should be allocating your time, you’ll increase productivity.
6. You can see scope creep coming and take appropriate action.
7. You can anticipate project changes.
8. You’ll never be caught complaining, “Where does the time go?”
9. You’ll be more successful at completing one task at a time, rather than jumping all over the place. Using timers helps.
10. You’ll always know what you’re doing and why you’re doing it, which provides a sense of purpose. Purpose increases engagement. Engagement increases performance.
11. Speaking of performance: If you want to ask for a raise, a promotion or you want to hire another team member, your time sheet could be your best ally.
12. When someone makes unreasonable demands on your time, you have proof of why the project/team/organization will suffer if you take on any more work.
13. Tracking time naturally forces you to prioritize tasks.
14. You’ll know when it’s time to delegate.
15. Tracking time keeps procrastination to a minimum.
16. You can analyze results and make important decisions based on the information you’ve gathered in your time sheets.
17. If you do monthly reviews, your time sheet can help you remember what you forgot.