Tag Archives: enterprise timesheet

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.

TimeControl 8.1 now available!

TimeControl and TimeControl Industrial version 8.1 are a major update to the TimeControl 8 family of editions with significant new and enhanced features.    We’re delighted with the new version.  You can find out more details on the website at TimeControl.com/features/latest.

Mobile Materials

tci_mobile_materials.jpg_350x281For TimeControl Industrial Users we have now added the ability to enter non-labor data from the field using the free TimeControl Mobile App.  Along with the already existing Timesheet and Crew Timesheet functionality, this version now allows material consumption, equipment usage and production accomplished to be entered into TimeControl using a mobile device.

The free TimeControl Mobile App is available on Google Play for Android devices and the Apple Store for iOS devices.

Enhanced Calendar View

Calendar_View4_300x162We’ve rewritten the Calendar View to be more useful as an operational tool as TimeControl expands with more project planning and control functionality.  The Calendar View now allows for multiple tasks per row.  Also, items which span more than one day are now made into a longer bar which we’re loving in the office!

Integration with Project for the Web

ProjectForTheWeb_300x189In TimeControl 8.1 we have added integration with Microsoft’s newest addition to its Project Family “Project for the Web” with import only integration (Microsoft doesn’t support sending data back yet).

 

A new wave of reports

TimesheetImages_240x162We’ve included numerous new reports in this version which are all templates that you can adapt to your own needs.

 

 

And so much more.

Find out all about the new version at TimeControl.com/features/latest.

If you are a TimeControl or TimeControl Industrial on premise client with a current support and maintenance agreement, you can download the new version at no additional charge at: TimeControl.com/support/updates. TimeControl Online subscribers will be notified about their updates in the coming weeks and will then be updated automatically.

Timesheet Data can be the center of your data universe

When you publish a multi-functional timesheet like TimeControl, it should be no surprise to see a conceptual data diagram that includes all the places timesheet data might be used or which might integrate with other corporate systems.  We see such diagrams virtually every week. TimeControl at the Center

For many organizations, becoming more effective requires integrating systems from many sources.  Big ERP vendors will promote doing everything under their umbrella but that’s not always practical for operational systems.  As soon as you must consider a project or estimating or cost control or government compliance system, you have to think about the timesheets that will drive the actuals.

The worst-case scenario is finding an organization that is trying to support more than one timesheet system at a time.  It’s hard enough to get people to fill in one timesheet in a week, imagine having to fill out two or three or more.  We encounter this worst-case nightmare all the time.  The challenge that TimeControl answers is having a single source of auditable timesheet data that can be used for multiple purposes and multiple systems at once.

That’s why the integration and interface abilities of TimeControl are such an important aspect of its functionality.  TimeControl is known for having pre-built integration to more project and cost control systems than any other timesheet in the industry but the integration doesn’t stop there.  Here are some of the tools that you can consider when building TimeControl into the center of your data universe.

Import and Export Transaction Files
Transaction File Interfaces are the most popular method of linking to or from a Finance or ERP system as CFOs can be reluctant to direct connect their Finance system with direct input or output.  TimeControl can create a transaction file in many formats and then place that file in a place where the Finance, Payroll or ERP system can consume it and ensure that any data coming in is going through their systems business rules.

TimeControl can consume transaction files in just the same way.  So, new employees can be added directly from the HR system by bringing in a transaction file.  There are many file formats supported including CSV, XML and Excel formats among others.  Not only can transaction files be consumed or generated on demand but TimeControl can schedule these links to occur at any time or as often as you require in the background.  Files can be transferred to or from a network location, a laptop or to and from an FTP site to which you and your external corporate systems have access.  This makes Transaction File integration as efficient on our subscription service, TimeControl Online as with TimeControl on premise.  With this integration occurring in the background, the effect on users is to make the integration completely transparent.

Programmable Integration
The ultimate in integration is often considered to be through an Application Programming Interface (API) and TimeControl includes an API with bi-directional abilities to both send information out to or receive information from external systems.  The RESTful API is extensive and highly secure.  The API works in both the Online and on premise versions of TimeControl and TimeControl Industrial.  Programming integration to the API takes more work but the level of integration is complete.  Clients can weave TimeControl into as many other systems as are required to make an overall control environment.

Database to database direct connection
For clients who have TimeControl installed on premise, connections can even be made directly to and from the TimeControl database.  TimeControl on premise can be installed on MySQL, SQL Server and Oracle databases and HMS provides the schema to allow for a direct SQL link to or from the database.  There are rules, of course, when pushing data into TimeControl but our technical services can help with that.

Project Management and other Systems

TimeControl include direct pre-configured links to Project Management systems either on demand or on a schedule. With Microsoft Project Online, BrightWork and Primavera EPPM you can even have the link into TimeControl notice when a new project appears in the project system and import it automatically. Pre-configured links to other systems include:

TimeControl supports all of these connections simultaneously. You can have multiple project links, multiple corporate system links and using multiple techniques. This is why TimeControl is often the center of data flow diagrams in an organization as links may be used for any combination of bidirectional updates with project management, payroll, HR, billing, R&D reporting, job costing, presence management systems, contractor management and more.

To find our more about specific links, go to.

For more information on how TimeControl integrates with other systems, go to TimeControl.com/use-cases or contact us at TimeControl.com/Contact for help on integrating many requirements into a timesheet single system.

 

SEFA is helping us start your week with some good news

sefa_300x65Here at HMS, whenever we receive a testimonial letter from a client, we get very excited.  This most recent letter from thee people at SEFA is no exception.  Bret Harris, SEFA’s Chief Financial Officer has written to us explaining how the TimeControl Industrial version has replaced a manual timesheet system for project tracking.

SEFA has deployed the Crew Timesheet option of TimeControl Industrial as well as the TimeControl Mobile App for some of their users’ phones and tablets.

The implementation of TimeControl at SEFA has streamlined numerous processes and they have also integrated TimeControl’s data into Microsoft’s Project Server as well as other corporate systems.

We deeply appreciate our partnership with SEFA and Bret’s kind letter.  You can read it in its entirety at: Timecontrol.com/why-timecontrol/testimonials/sefa.

 

 

US Properties increases efficiency with TimeControl

We are delighted to have received a letter from US Properties about their use of TimeControl. US Properties is the leading commercial real estate brokerage and property management firm in Eastern Connecticut.

Erik Mills, US Properties’ Vice President of Operations penned a letter to us recently explaining how the deployment of TimeControl has allowed the company to improve efficiency to be able to grow without increasing its staff.

“We strongly recommend the system for its ease of use and customization but more importantly the invaluable tech employees who are readily available to assist,” said Mills.

Here at HMS, these letters are a huge motivator for our group so we thank Erik and the whole US Properties team for their support and their letter.

You can read the letter in its entirety at:
TimeControl.com/why-timecontrol/testimonials/usproperties.

TimeControl joins the Internet of Things (IoT) with voice command

TimeControl has taken a leap forward to join the Internet of Things (IoT) thanks to a new Alexa skill released by EasyVoice. Over the last few months, HMS has worked with EasyVoice to help the new Alexa skills understand how to interact with TimeControl and it is now available.

Now you can say things like “Alexa, add two hours on my timesheet to my meetings task for today” or “Alexa, how much time have I booked to meetings this week?”.  The new skill allows users who are in situations where using their desktop or mobile interfaces is challenging, such as when they are driving.

To see the new EasyVoice skill in operation, go to our solutions page at: TimeControl.com/use-cases/easyvoice.

You can subscribe to EasyVoice’s Alexa skill and even get a free trial of the skill at: Voice-Time.com/giveaways.

Which browser is best with TimeControl 8?

We have had numerous questions about the performance of different browsers with TimeControl. With the release of TimeControl 8, these question have expanded to which version of TimeControl is faster, version 7 or version 8 and which browser performs better.

The HMS Technical department devoted some time to benchmarking the answer to these questions and we’re happy to share the data with you.  We tested 80 different TimeControl functions in TimeControl 7.4.1 using Internet Explorer (the most popular browser used with TimeControl when TimeControl 7 was first released) and in TimeControl 8.0 using Microsoft Edge, Firefox, Chrome and Internet Explorer  (yes, Explorer is still part of Windows 10).   When we were done with our findings we were delighted with most of the results.

TimeControl 8 is, on average 33% faster than TimeControl 7.4.1.

The fastest browser when using TimeControl 8 was Chrome.

We were a little surprised at the poor performance of Internet Explorer.  So, in TimeControl 8.0.0.12 we included some IE-specific performance improvements which boosted the IE performance by a whopping 62% over earlier 8.0 builds and we’re delighted with that.

For those who love the raw details, we’ve included the entire study here: TC80_Benchmarks.

Aegion Corp and HMS collaborate on a case study

We’re always delighted when clients let us know how TimeControl has made a difference.  This month, we are able to share with you a case study of Aegion Corp. who has been a TimeControl Industrial client since 2014.   HMS and Aegion collaborated on this  case study for several weeks.  It shows the results of interviews with several Aegion clients including the CIO, Thys Lourens.  Aegion is a Missouri based pipeline services company.

Aegion selected TimeControl Industrial for its ability to enable field data collection and reports in this case study that by using TimeControl they have been able to improve overall productivity.

You can read the Press Release on this study or go directly to the Aegion Case Study to find out more about how TimeControl has helped Aegion improve their effectiveness.  Here at HMS we’re proud to count them among our many clients.

Case Study: TimeControl.com/why-timecontrol/case-studies/aegion

 

Linking TimeControl to Project Management at Different Levels

TimeControl has more project management system integrations than any timesheet in the industry so perhaps it’s no surprise that many years ago we had to handle requests from clients who wanted to collect time at a different level of resolution than the project management system.

We’ll cover three different scenarios in this article

Continue reading Linking TimeControl to Project Management at Different Levels

TimeControl Industrial 8 now available

With the successful launch of TimeControl 8 only a few days ago, we’ve now released TimeControl Industrial version 8.  The TimeControl 8 version already included numerous features that will be of interest to all TimeControl Industrial clients.

crew_tsentry_3There are also some features very specific to TimeControl Industrial in this edition.  Some of these include:

Crew Timesheets in TimeControl Mobile

TimeControl 8 includes the free TimeControl Mobile App and TimeControl Industrial users can, for the first, time create and edit Crew Timesheets and edit Crew members while mobile.  With nearly half of the total global workforce expected to be comprised of mobile employees by 2022, these new features in TimeControl Industrial Mobile will be welcome.

Manage Crews in TimeControl Mobile

Not only can supervisors and team leaders create crew timesheets while on the go, they can also use the TimeControl Mobile App to update team members.  A team lead who is out in the field with their crew can start their shift by updating their crew and then updating Crew Timesheet information as the day progresses no matter where they are.

Support for TimeControl Mobile when disconnected from the Internet

TimeControl Mobile has been enhanced so that if connection to the Internet is interrupted; something that can occur more frequently in remote construction sites, the App will continue functioning and will automatically syncronize with the central application as soon as a connection is re-established.

Mobile Views

The TimeControl Mobile App includes dynamic data analysis for management of all timesheet data under their control.  Instant graphics in numerous formats will enable rapid decision making based on where time is being spent.

The upgrade is available to existing on-premise clients with a current support and maintenance agreement at no additional charge from the TimeControl upgrades site at: Industrial.TimeControl.com/support/updates. TimeControl Industrial 8 will be upgraded automatically for TimeControl Online subscription clients in mid-July.

For further information, please visit Industrial.TimeControl.com or email info@hms.ca.