TimeControl maintains a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) Index

Saving answers to our Frequently asked Questions save our technical and sales people a lot of time.  When we get questions over and over we try to have an answer appear either on the TimeControl Blog, the Solutions Area of TimeControl.com or in Frequently asked questions.  The best plan is often just to do a search of your question on both the blog and the website.

This week a frequently asked question was answered about where notes can be added in TimeControl.

You can, of course, add notes in TimeControl and not only can you add notes to the timesheet, you can add them to each line of the timesheet and to each expense item and to tables throughout the application.

You can see the complete index of TimeControl FAQs at: TimeControl.com/support/faq.

TimeControl Online enjoys its 9th anniversary!

With quite a busy August here at HMS we completely forgot an important anniversary.  TimeControl Online, our Timesheet Software as a Service in the cloud was launched in August of 2011.  It became an instant hit and is now used by organizations around the world.  Tens of thousands of users are on the TimeControl Online platform.  Subscriptions of the online service now eclipses on-premise sales and that has only accelerated this year. We’ve been fortunate to enjoy a 99.9% uptime performance over the 9 years of TimeControl Online’s life and we continue to focus new efforts on features, performance and capabilities of the online system.

We’ll make a much bigger celebration for the 10th anniversary next year but for now we thank all our TimeControl Online clients, some of whom have been subscribers since the first release!

For more information on TimeControl Online, visit TimeControl.com/features/timecontrol-online.

TimeControl Flexibility lets you actually add functions to the menu

TimeControl is known in the industry as the most flexible timesheet available and that’s true in so many ways.  The ability to add extra fields or validation rules or make the display of the timesheet vary depending on your role are all remarkable features.

But did you know that you can even add functions to the timesheet?

It’s true.

In the Maintenance area of the TimeControl Menu the Edit Menu function allows you to add a completely new function.  This is often used by our own staff to add extra documentation to a client’s menu with a PDF or other file that is specific to the client.

But you can add anything you have a URL for.  As an example, we’ve created an Online Lesson in the TimeControl Online Lessons area that shows how to add Online Lessons to the Help menu!

Once a menu item is added, it becomes part of the TimeControl structure and is controllable in the Security Profiles area just like any other menu function.  And when TimeControl is upgraded, these menu items will upgrade automatically at the same time.

It’s just one more way that TimeControl is adapting to how you want to function.

Our users at Quinte Conservation had some great mail for us which we’d like to share

mother goose and baby

It’s always great to hear from our clients.  From time to time though we get the delightful experience of receiving a letter like the one we just received from Quinte Conservation.

Quinte Conservation is a community based environmental protection agency that serves 18 municipalities in the area east of Toronto, Ontario Canada.

The letter from Tammy Smith, the Corporate Services Manager explains how the introduction of TimeControl a few years ago has helped from both the management and the employee perspectives to improve visibility into time spent on different projects and help distribute costs more accurately.

Employees are now able to automatically see available and taken vacation, sick leave and personal time off and administrators can let TimeControl calculate those banks of time automatically.

We’re very grateful to Tammy and the entire Quinte Conservation team for their letter and our relationship and we look forward to working together for many years to come.

You can read Tammy’s letter in its entirety at: TimeControl.com/why-timecontrol/testimonials/quinteconservation.

TimeControl.com has free online training

onlinetraining_250x109Not everyone is happy to read through manuals from cover to cover.  After all the TimeControl printed documentation runs over 1,000 pages.  But printed documentation is only one of the many tools available to Administrators and end-users on how to use TimeControl.

We’ve done recent updates to our Online Video Training Library. There are separate lessons for TimeControl 8 and even older versions.

These lessons are only 3-7 minutes each so users can work at your own pace. Each mini-lesson shows a single feature or function of TimeControl. Some are designed for end-users, others for TimeControl Administrators.

There are many other resources as well on the website including webcasts, white papers, slide presentations, factsheets and even a section on timesheet best practices.  You can browse through all of these resources at no charge at the Resources Area TimeControl.com.

Much of TimeControl.com is about you building your solution

Scavenger-Hunt_iStock-185313527_300x200Since we first launched our first website in the mid 1990s we have focused on making knowledge available to others.  This tradition of sharing information continues in TimeControl.com.  The website contains information about our product of course, but it also contains collateral of interest to anyone involved in project management systems, timesheet systems and, in particular multi-function timesheet systems.  There has never been any fee for accessing this collateral.

We always knew people would come to our site with questions about the features of our products, but people don’t fundamentally shop for features.  They shop for a solution to their business challenges.  So we have made our thinking on how to solve business challenges with our products and services easy to access here.

Surfing the TimeControl website at first glance can be overwhelming for the sheer volume of information.  There are webcasts, online training, white papers, factsheets and slide shows but the site content is organized into several logical areas:

TimeControl prospects

For those stopping by because they are interested in buying TimeControl, then the TimeControl Features area and Why TimeControl? areas are the first stops.  They contain information specific about what TimeControl can do, who has bought it in the past, why it was successful and how to subscribe to or buy it now.

Solutions

For those who are interested in how a multi-function timesheet like TimeControl can be useful, the Solutions area looks at many different possible applications.  There is a section for using TimeControl for Human Resources, using TimeControl for Payroll, using TimeControl for tracking R&D tax credits, using TimeControl to integrate with Primavera or Microsoft Project and much more.  Each solutions area contains different collateral like webcasts, factsheets and screen shots to help answer questions about how to solve a particular business challenge.

Resources Library

We may have referenced some webcasts or white papers in different solutions areas but we have bundled access to all our major collateral in the Resources Library.  Here you’ll find different sections for Webcasts, White Papers, Factsheets, Slide Presentations, Online Training Videos and our Press Releases.  There’s even a section on best practices for using timesheets and deploying TimeControl.

Of course that’s not the end of our materials.  There is also this blog, articles we write for other sites and put into the public domain.  We hope this information is valuable for those who are considering our products and also for those who are just looking to educate themselves in the industry.

You’ll find the TimeControl Solutions area at: TimeControl.com/use-cases.

The TimeControl Resource Library can be found at: TimeControl.com/resources.

Why are there so many types of timesheets?

TooManyChoices_300x300If you do an Internet search for the word “timesheet” you’re going to find hundreds of thousands of timesheets.  That makes the search essentially useless.  If you start looking at what you might need in a timesheet you’re still going to find hundreds of options.  Why does the market support so many different timesheets?  Are they all the same?

They’re not.

One of the reasons so many timesheet systems survive in the market is that many of them are targeted at specific uses.  By far the most popular timesheet type is for time and attendance.  This tracks how much time each employee spends at the office and, if they’re absent, why.  This allows payroll to be calculated and for the HR department, allows banks of vacation, sick leave and time off to be update.

The next most popular type is almost certainly time and billing.  Popular with professionals like accountants, lawyer, engineers and consultants, time and billing timesheets need to track the company name for which work was done, the rate at which time was billed and enough description to justify the invoice later.

Project manager systems also have timesheets, they are designed to update the actual time spent against planned tasks.

And there are other timesheets for other purposes such as government programs that require particular kinds of timesheet reporting to be compliant.

The challenge with so many types of timesheet systems is that different parts of an organization can end up selecting something very different to meet their particular needs.  That can result in deploying multiple timesheets in the same place and in a worst-case situation, employees might have to fill in one, two or even more timesheets to complete their week.

We’ve recently updated our webcast and produced both a white paper and presentation on this phenomena and how TimeControl can be used to overcome the multiple timesheet challenge.

You’ll find the webcast at: TimeControl.com/resources/webcasts.
The White paper is at: TimeControl.com/resources/whitepapers.
And the Presentation can be found at: TimeControl.com/resources/presentations.

TimeControl integration with Project for the Web

TimeControl has included integration with every version of Microsoft Project since 1995 so perhaps it is no surprise that we recently announced integration capabilities with the new Microsoft Project for the Web.Links to MS Project

This latest edition to the Microsoft Project family was previously referred to as Project Service, the “New Microsoft Project” and in licensing terms, Project Plan 1.  It is built on the Microsoft Power Platform and is integrated with Microsoft Office 365.

HMS and Microsoft developers worked together on this integration to ensure that clients who are using this latest member of the Project family are able to integrate it into TimeControl.

Project for the Web currently has only exporting capabilities through a Web Service and in our talks with Microsoft it appears that there is work underway by Microsoft to have bi-directional integration possible.  At the moment, the capabilities we can take advantage of allow us to pull new projects and tasks from Project for the Web into the TimeControl Project Table and Charge Table so that these items can appear in a TimeControl User’s timesheet.

While integration to push actuals back to Project for the Web would be great, this level of integration is still tremendously useful as it allows all work being defined by project personnel to be accounted for in one place.  TimeControl can become your center for all actuals regardless of their source and reports from TimeControl can make their way back to Office 365 via the TimeControl API or other integration means.

Links to MS ProjectTimeControl’s tremendous flexibility in links with project management systems allows multiple systems and versions to be supported at the same time.  So, you can have some projects being managed in Project Professional, some in Project Online, some in Project Server and some in Project for the Web all at the same time.  TimeControl will dutifully keep track of all the different links, project-by-project and move data back and forth either on demand or on a schedule as needed.   The end-user doesn’t need to stress about which tool a project manager is using, all they need to do is look at their timesheet and add in the time on the tasks they worked on.  TimeControl takes care of  the rest in the background.

For more information on all the integration solutions possible with TimeControl, go to TimeControl.com/use-cases.

 

Managing what isn’t there – missing timesheets

Nerd_Lost_iStock-906654482_300x200.jpgOn a Monday morning, sometimes the tougest thing to deal with is what isn’t there at all.  Anyone who has ever been a supervisor, timesheet administrator or team leader knows that the most challenging thing on a Monday morning can be locating and managing any missing timesheets.

TimeControl has features and functions to deal with missing timesheets and we’ve just released a new White Paper to help you navigate your many options.  The white paper is organized into three sections:

1. Avoiding Missing Timesheets

That should be the first step of course.  If we didn’t have any missing timesheets we wouldn’t need to manage them!  This section looks at Reminder Emails, TimeControl Reminders, Notifications of Missing Timesheets, Validation Rules and Individual’s Dashboards among other features.

2. Locating Missing Timesheets

If timesheets still turn up missing, TimeControl has numerous methods of locating them and informing users that they’re missing.  This section covers the Missing Timesheet Notifications, Missing Timesheet Reports, Supervisor Dashboards and how to be notified once the missing timesheets are on the way.

3. Managing Missing Timesheets

Timesheets can be missing for many reasons and depending on the cause and the particular situation, TimeControl has tools for managing the timesheets and ensure they get created or completed and released to the appropriate authority.  This section covers Alternate Users and the Change Timesheet Ownership tools.

The White Paper: Managing what you can’t See.  How to manage missing timesheets with TimeControl is available now on the White Paper page of the TimeControl website.

For a complete list of TimeControl White Papers, visit: TimeControl.com/resources/whitepapers.

The official blogsite of TimeControl