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4 Fast Ways for Interior Design Studios to Manage Timesheets Painlessly

Stop dreading the thought of filling in timesheets for your interior design projects. Discover the secrets of painless time tracking as we explore four fast ways for interior design studios to manage time tracking.

Designers across all countries and disciplines love their timesheets. They look forward to spending hours of the last few days of the month filling in all their time they spent on all those projects from Monday to Friday for the past 4 weeks – working way into the wee hours of the night in some cases – it’s a task that brings them so much joy. Said no one!

Lets face it – Time sheets are the bane of every interior designer’s day. It contradicts a designer’s fundamental principles to have to fill in numbers into an automatically highlighting excel sheet created by someone who clearly had a wealth of time on their hands trying to make counting project hours fun.

And who remembers what actually happened on the 2nd Thursday of the month at 10am anyway!

So why do it?

It’s quite simple really. 

To get paid by clients. They help a key function of most Finance departments and are unfortunately a necessary evil.

How timesheets help do more than get you paid!

But wait there’s more, timesheets are actually useful for a number of reasons and here are the main ones:

  • Time tracking: Timesheets are used to track how much time is actually spent on a project – vital for calculating costs accurately and also allows you to have a clear understanding of how your hours contribute to the overall budget. Most projects have tight budgets, and accurate tracking helps in identifying any potential cost overruns early in the project, allowing for necessary adjustments.
  • Resource Allocation: Timesheets provide insights into how team members are allocated across different tasks and phases of a project. If filled in correctly this promotes transparency in seeing if skills are matched to jobs being done, helping ensure that people are assigned based on their availability. PMs can easily see if resources are overbooked or under utilized.
  • Project Planning and Scheduling: Timesheets contribute to effective future project planning and scheduling by providing historical data on how long it actually took to accomplish a similar task in previous projects. This tremendously helps in creating more realistic timelines and schedules for future jobs!
  • Performance Evaluation: Your next training opportunity (and quite possibly your next pay rise) can be affected by your timesheet!? By analyzing the time taken to complete tasks, leaders can identify areas for improvement, assess productivity, and make informed decisions about training or resource allocation.
  • Billing and Invoicing: Some design houses bill clients based on the hours worked by their team, especially when working as a sub-consultant. Timesheets serve as a source of accurate and transparent information for billing purposes with detailed breakdowns of the work completed, making it easier to justify the invoiced amount to clients.
  • Documentation for Disputes: In case of disputes or claims related to labor, having accurate timesheets can serve as essential documentation. It provides a clear record of the hours worked, tasks performed, and can be used to resolve any disagreements between contractors, subcontractors, or other stakeholders.
  • Compliance and Legal Requirements: Large public realm projects, regulatory bodies or labor laws can require companies to maintain accurate records of team working hours. Timesheets serve as a means of compliance with such legal requirements.

Timesheet management does not have to be a boring task. Power-up with purpose built time tracking software to get them squared off painlessly.

Time management strategies

So now that you know those hours spent on filling in all that paperwork actually do have a benefit, lets explore what strategies you can consider to manage time in your organization.

  1. Old-School Charm: Traditional Paper-Based Timesheets: Imagine stepping into your studio with a classic vibe, get creative with custom branded stationery – think of timesheets like hand-written journal entries on your projects! While it might sound a bit old-fashioned, there’s a certain charm in jotting down your hours on paper. Just be careful not to spill your coffee on it!
  2. Spreadsheet Magic! Excel Templates for the Win: If you spend more than half your week on design then you probably need Excel to do some of the heavy lifting. Picture this – your projects neatly organized in colorful cells, formulas doing the math for you – that’s the magic of Excel!. Just watch out for those tricky formula errors – they can be a puzzle to solve! GET OUR FREE EXCEL TEMPLATE FOR YOUR TIMESHEETS HERE!
  3. Time Tracking Software: Turning Time into Art – A big step up from Excel! Time tracking software is like having a personal assistant for your hours. Toggl or Clockify are tried and tested services with an interface that you don’t have to program as you would with a spreadsheet. If you need your timesheets linked up to projects and opportunities so that you can track hours by particular job take a look at the timesheet feature in .STUDIO which is included for free with our LITE package.
  4. Project Management Extravaganza: Integrated Systems for Superheroes: Imagine a superhero team-up, but for project management! Tools like Asana or are your creative sidekicks. They not only track time but also handle tasks, files, and communication. If your needs are more design oriented though you may want to take a look at .STUDIO’s project management feature where you can get detailed reports on costs and profitability by resource across all your projects.

In the world of interior design, timesheet management doesn’t have to be a boring task. It’s your chance to add a splash of creativity to the mundane. Whether you’re old-school with paper, vibing with Excel, cruising with time tracking software, powering up with project management systems, or going with .STUDIO – choose the style that fits your studio’s personality.

With a rocking timesheet game, you’ll not only hit your project deadlines but also add a touch of flair to your creative journey. Cheers to organized chaos and the future with your best designs!

Reach out to us to get your demo today!