TIME SHEET: How It Works, Template & Difference

Time Sheet
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A time sheet or timesheet is a real or virtual instrument that allows you to record and track the time you spend working. As an employer, you will be able to know exactly how many hours each person has worked. Do you want to know what timesheets can accomplish for your company? This guide is here to tell you all you need to know about a timesheet or time sheet including a free template and how an employee can use the calculator. Let’s get started!

What is a Timesheet?

A time sheet or timesheet tracks how much time an employee spends on tasks. Timesheets are a payroll technique used by management, human resources, and accounting to record time and pay employees based on evidence of total hours worked. Time cards or time clocks are the most common associations.

Timesheets have also proven invaluable in project management for firms to monitor their time and keep projects on schedule. They can also be used as a management tool for tracking expenses, capacity planning, and estimating team availability.

What does a Timesheet Look Like?

A standard timesheet or time sheet, whether on paper or in software, employs a grid to lay out the time spent per day on specific tasks and/or projects.

Timesheets typically contain the following information:

  • Employee’s name
  • Pay period
  • Date Worked
  • Hours worked each day
  • Total hours worked each week

You can, however, require employees to enter additional information such as their ID number (if relevant), hourly rate, overtime hours, lunch breaks, mileage, time off, and so on. Also, having employees, particularly consultants, and contractors, divide down their workweek by task and project may be beneficial.

Why would I have my Employees use Timesheets?

A Timesheet or time sheet has the following advantages:

#1. Payroll processing is simplified

When you have a large number of employees, it can be difficult to recall how many hours each one worked per week. Furthermore, if you pay an employee for less time than they worked, you may look to be stealing earnings. Because time sheets make the complete number of hours worked by employees readily available, they reduce numerous payroll processing issues.

#2. Transparent internal practices

By requiring all employees to use a time sheet or timesheet, you can address a common employee complaint that some team members work less and are paid more. Your team will know that everyone is following the same guidelines and that their hours are being tracked if you use time and attendance software.

#3. Transparent client billing

If you bill your clients by the hour, there is always the possibility that one of them would contest the overall amount you charged. You can use your timesheet to demonstrate that you worked the amount of time for which you are paying the client. Payment should then be just around the corner (hopefully).

#4. Improved project management

Timesheets aid in the tracking and management of projects in two major areas. One, timesheets show how much time various jobs require, which you can then include in future initiatives. Second, a time sheet demonstrates which employee takes the least amount of time to complete high-quality work. As a consequence, you know which personnel to assign to your most important tasks.

#5. Workplace efficiency 

You may increase the speed and efficiency of your operations by identifying your most productive staff. You might also save money because speedier workers can take on more jobs.

Applications of Timesheets

A timesheet can be useful in a variety of situations, including:

#1. Payroll processing

Employers use timesheets to keep track of work hours, leaves, accruals, and changes for payroll processing. Employers can also use time-tracking software to create a trackable workflow for payroll approval. The most common cause of payroll problems is incorrect data entry. Time-tracking software systems reduce data entry errors, allowing your payroll procedure to run smoothly.

#2. Management Accounting

Timesheets are an extremely useful tool in management accounting. They assist managers in recording task start and end times. This is useful when managers need to know which jobs take up the most time and identify areas that cause work to be delayed.

Service-based industries: 

#1. Law office timesheets

It is critical for legal firms to keep accurate records of client hours and the services they provide to their customers. Law companies can use timesheets to track bills based on client service hours.

#2. Timesheets for freelancers

For independent contractors, time is money. Because many freelancers charge clients by the hour, properly measuring time is critical. Knowing the amount of time spent on projects becomes tough for people who work in a separate area from their clients. A freelancer can precisely monitor time spent and share the records with clients by using a time-tracking system. This allows clients to understand where their money is going and gives freelancers precise records.

#3. Timesheets for accountants

Accounting firms’ profits are determined by how efficiently their employees use their time with clients. High utilization and billability translate to large revenues. Accounting firms can use timesheets and time-tracking software to keep track of both their invoices and their time. Choosing the proper software is thus a vital issue for accounting firms.

Time Sheet Template

When establishing a timesheet or time sheet in your firm, starting with a template will most likely yield the best results. Two Microsoft Time Sheet templates are provided below:

The first time sheet template is a simple timesheet that shows the employee’s start, end, and lunch break times for each date worked. You’ll also get a breakdown of total hours worked into normal and overtime hours, as well as a reminder of how many hours make up your company’s workweek. At the top, your and the employee’s names are displayed.

The second time sheet template is intended for business owners that charge their clients by the hour. This weekly timesheet includes a client code, a project code, and billable hours worked in addition to your company’s name, address, and signature. If your staff work on many billable tasks each day, they might add extra rows. Many time and attendance software solutions allow you to create personalized timesheets.

Free Time Sheet Calculator

A free time sheet calculator can tell you how many hours your staff has worked. Is it really as simple as that? You must pay an employee for time worked, which necessitates the use of a free calculator to calculate their hours on a time sheet. This assists you in budgeting and paying your personnel.

Read Also: TIME SHEET: How It Works, Template & Difference

A free time sheet calculator can help your organization by ensuring that employees are compensated for the hours they work. A free time sheet calculator also assists in reducing errors about when an employee started and ended their work. Manual timesheet calculations can have negative effects on many organizations.

Workers might make mistakes even when they have the best intentions to complete their timesheets. That’s how easily a company can lose money due to a single piece of paper or a basic spreadsheet. Staff work hours will be incorrect without an accurate record, and you will pay the price.

Do I need to use a Specific Timekeeping Method?

You can use any timekeeping method you desire as long as it accurately records the information required by the Department of Labor.

Employers typically use one of two approaches to track time:

#1. Timesheet

A time sheets record the number of hours worked by an employee per day and week. They are frequently more flexible than time clocks, making them easier to change if an employee makes a mistake. They are, however, less precise than time clocks because the employee must manually fill out each time sheet.

#2. Time Clocks 

Time clocks record the precise time employee clocks in and out (i.e. began and stopped working). As an employee clocks out, most time clocks automatically calculate the number of hours worked. If you want to keep track of when employees are working and taking breaks, this can be an excellent solution. It may be more difficult to correct problems if, for example, an employee forgets to clock in and out.

Tips for Using Timesheets

Timesheets can be an excellent tool for tracking employee hours and adhering to FLSA regulations. If you’ve never used timesheets in your business, here are some pointers to get you started:

  • Examine each timesheet before approving it. If a timesheet is wrong, return it to the employee so that any necessary modifications can be made.
  • Each pay cycle requires employees to submit timesheets by the same day. While you cannot withhold pay if an employee fails to submit a timesheet, establishing this rule can assist build the habit and ensure you keep solid records.
  • Require employees to record all time worked, including training, travel for work, and time spent away from the office. For example, if a person checks their business email outside of their normal workday, they should keep track of the time.
  • Keep records. To keep your records consistent and organized, use the same type of timesheet for each type of employee.
  • If feasible, use software. Digital timesheets can help you save time on administrative responsibilities, keep each timesheet uniform, and make it easier to find information. Furthermore, employees are not required to keep track of a physical piece of paper or provide verification of their labor.

What is Timesheet Software?

Timesheet software is used to track team work hours and to simplify the payroll process. Modern software has also evolved to include capabilities that track the time it takes to perform each task and assist managers in keeping the project on track.

In reality, timesheet software can monitor and track practically every facet of time management in a project. Besides simply recording the amount of time a team spends on a task, the software can also track scheduling, resources, and other variables related to task execution.

Traditional Timesheets vs. Online Timesheet Software

Timesheets are necessary for keeping track of team hours, but is it worthwhile to invest in online timesheet software, or may a traditional time-tracking spreadsheet suffice? Consider the following distinctions:

#1. Customizable

One advantage of using an online timesheet over traditional methods such as time log sheets and time cards is that you can tailor them to meet the structure of your firm. Not all businesses are the same; they operate in different industries and have unique payroll processing requirements.

#2. Reporting

The issue with paper time sheet template, as well as electronic timesheets created in Excel or Google Sheets, is that they are data islands. They are functional, but they do not go beyond the minimum requirements of a timesheet. On the contrary, an online timesheet provides a central repository that can be accessed to generate reports that provide managers with insight into how their teams are operating as well as information to track project time.

#3. Security

Possessing online timesheet software allows it to be electronically locked, preventing anyone from modifying the information contained within. Once management has approved an employee timesheet, they can protect it to ensure that what is received at payroll matches what they observed. Nobody can come in and falsify the figures.

#4. Simple Access

Printed timesheets must be issued physically, and digital copies must be sent electronically. An online timesheet software, on the other hand, is available at any time and from any location. If you manage teams who work in different locations and time zones, they can log into their timesheet to update them without having to wait for you to give it to them.

How can I make my own Time Sheet?

You will need the following information to create your timesheet:

  • The date
  • The job or shift
  • The times they clock in (before and after lunch)
  • The times they clock out (before and after lunch)
  • Their total number of hours
  • They total number of overtime hours
  • Their total number of sick hour

What are 3 Types of Timesheets?

There are three sorts of timesheets:

  • Daily timesheets.
  • Weekly timesheets. 
  • Bi-weekly timesheets. 

What is a Time Sheet for Work Hours?

A timesheet is a way for tracking the amount of time people spend working – this approach includes filling out the start and end times for employees, as well as the projects and activities they worked on, generally on paper.

Are Timesheets Necessary?

Timesheets are an essential component of payroll, client invoicing, and payroll for remote personnel. Timesheets serve as a legal foundation for ensuring that employees receive adequate remuneration, benefits, and time off.

Can I use Excel for Timesheet?

You certainly can. This Excel time sheet template allows you to record your hours for each day of the week, including overtime, sick, vacation, and holiday time. The template contains algorithms for calculating the number of hours worked and the amount payable depending on your hourly rate.

How do you Create a Timesheet in Word?

By utilizing Microsoft. Simply launch the software and attentively follow the steps until you achieve your goals.

Who is Responsible for Timesheets?

The business owners. The employer is required by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) to keep a record of the hours worked by employees, and while many businesses rely on employees’ assistance via a timesheet or time clock, the employer is ultimately responsible.

How do you Maintain a Time Sheet?

You may manage your time sheet by conveying the value of time tracking to your team members, encouraging staff to fill out timesheets on a daily basis, using automation, and creating job estimations.

What is Another name for Time Sheet?

Time sheets are also known as table, list, roster, timetable, tally, and appendix.


If you’re apprehensive to implement timesheets in your organization, keep in mind that they don’t have to be hard. Most timesheet software includes instructional instructions or videos to help you add time entries and manage all you need. In this day and age of teleworking, it is critical to transition from paper-based timesheets to digital ones.


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