It’s the toughest thing about timesheet management, finding the missing timesheets on Monday morning (or whatever morning is your start of week). Fortunately TimeControl has functionality that lets you track down these timesheets that are yet to be.
There are two main weapons in the arsenal of TimeControl timesheet administrators to track down missing timesheets. The first is aptly named “The Missing Timesheet report”. This report has a number of options. When you start the report from the Reports Menu area, it asks whether to include:
- Only timesheets that have not been started
- Timesheets which have been submitted but have not yet arrived in “Posting” or completed status.
As great as that sounds, there’s more. In the User Profiles definition, you can set security to show “Timesheet Data only for me and those who report to me.” This will ensure that the Missing Timesheet report only includes information from those below the person with this profile in the approval hierarchy. It’s an ideal setting to turn on for Department Supervisors who can be made responsible for the collection and approval of timesheets in their area. Since the report is hierarchical it doesn’t matter how many or few levels of approval there are, with this setting on, any timesheet data and only the timesheet data below the user will be visible. Now each department supervisor or timesheet clerk automatically has a Missing Timesheet report that applies to their department.
The Missing Timesheet Report is a powerful tool and already goes a long way towards ensuring that any incomplete or unsubmitted timesheets are located but it is not the most popular tool among TimeControl Administrators. That privilege rests with the “Email Notification.”
Email Notification takes the missing timesheet and automatically sends a pre-formatted email to everyone on the timesheet list. When starting this option from the Tools menu, it asks who you want to locate just like the Missing Timesheet report does. Then you’re given an opportunity to enter a message to users who may have a missing timesheet within their control. That means the employee themselves if the timesheet isn’t started or a supervisor if the timesheet has been submitted but is not yet own by the “Posting” process. The function uses the email address in each user’s record in the User table to determine where to send mail to. As good as that is, this function is made much more powerful by allowing TimeControl Administrators to automatically schedule emails to be sent out automatically! This means that an Administrator can schedule a gentle reminder to go out on a Friday (or near whenever the end of the working week is for you) saying “Don’t forget your timesheet”. They can then schedule an email to go out on Monday morning saying “Perhaps you forgot your timesheet?” and an email later in the morning telling the recipients that “No kidding, we’re waiting for your timesheet please!” As the day progresses, hopefully the list of recipients becomes shorter and the message more insistent.
Both the Missing Timesheet report and Missing Timesheet Email Notification depend on the “Start” and “Finish” dates in the Employee record. You can think of those fields as “When we should start looking for missing timesheets” and “When we should stop looking for missing timesheets”.
These are two of the most powerful tools but they’re augmented by a few other elements:
First, the TimeControl dashboard can be set up to show users if they are missing any past timesheets as soon as they log into TimeControl.
Next, the integration of TimeControl into processes like Project Management, Payroll and HR let the compliance of the timesheet in TimeControl adopt the standards of the compliance of those systems. For example, if the timesheet is key to having payroll done successfully, there’s an enormous incentive for employees to complete it. That helps on the project management side as the data is collected at one time. TimeControl’s ability to be a single source of timesheet data for many different systems is a big benefit in this regard.
Finally, TimeControl’s functionality for “Alternative Users” who can replace a supervisor to approve timesheets when that supervisor is away for an extended period, “Change Ownership” which allows an Administrator to force an incomplete timesheet up the approval path when an employee has started it but is absent and the ability to automatically send emails for rejected timesheets that had an approval problem all lend themselves to helping make sure the timesheets are located each week and ultiamtely end up in a posted format.
TimeControl’s ability to track down missing timesheets is one of the reasons it is so popular with such a wide range of sizes of organizations. This functionality scales to tens of users, hundreds of users or thousands of users as a natural part of the weekly timesheet process.