Back around the turn of the century I had written a time tracking program that my employees could use on their Palm Pilots or Laptops…
…They would typically enter an Activity and the Start Time for the Task and when they remembered they would enter a End Time too when it ended. If they missed the End Time I was always able to use the Start Time of the next Activity to figure out the End Time of the previous one.
They would select a Task Category from a Drop Down Menu and assign the Work they were doing to a Work Order selected from a Drop Down Menu too.
Then one day one winter when I felt like I had a week where I was getting the things I needed to do done I decided to track my own TimeCard information and where I thought I wasting 1/3 of my time on unproductive activities I discovered depending upon the week it was more like 50% to 80% was what I would characterize as waste and I should have delegated those “waste” activities to others.
I was following and reading the consultant Al Levi back when his business was called Appleseed Business and then he wrote a book entitled “The 7-Power Contractor” and changed the business name to 7PowerContractor dot com too.
I was listening to one of his podcasts last night Episode 085 – GOT A MINUTE?
September 21, 2021 where he talks about something else Owners/Managers can learn by tracking their time….
Listen to episode 85 of The 7-Power Contractor Radio and learn how to deal with the question “Got a minute?”
(First published Sep 28, 2021, Revised Nov 18, 2023)
An online colleague of mine Paul McManus of McManus Kitchen & Bath of Tallahasee FL in a FaceBook Group once brought up personal time tracking and mentioned a product called: TimeBro which is now called Memtime. which “records your time in all programs and displays your working day – to help you remember every minute”. I think it might be useful as an aide fro accurate time reporting but I think it really helps the personal employee to CONSCIOUSLY understand how they are spending their time to actually log their time rather than just have it recorded automatically in the background.
Another tool for contractors to check out: BusyBusy.com
I built my first mobile app back around 2001 and it was a FileMaker Mobile based Palm app I called Palm TimeCard and my employees would use it to record time on on one of the four company Palm m505s. The app was built using the now defunct FileMaker Mobile for the now defunct Palm Pilot and it allowed me to collect timekeeping data from my people by connecting to the old Mac Laptop I used to carry around job to job.
Internet years fly by fast.