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Timesheets and Health and Safety

Timesheets and Health and Safety - Understanding how they affect each other

In any work environment, maintaining a healthy standard can be quite challenging. Even trickier is managing office politics that keep emerging on a daily basis. While politics and disagreements are the perfect recipes for office disputes and disagreements, they can easily be dealt with by the use of a timesheet.

But how can timesheets help in promoting a healthy and safe working environment? It’s important to first consider the health and safety requirements in any working environment. Apart from injuries, issues such as disputes concerning financial differences and any other personal issues can be a big health challenge in a working place.

It’s for this reason that timesheets are of utter importance in managing such issues. How can they be used in managing health and safety? How do they relate? Read along to find out more.

Timesheets Improve Workers Productivity

Perhaps the best asset that any workplace can have is productive employees. Let’s face it, once you have employees who are motivated and energetic about what they do, you will ultimately have a productive business. This will translate to more output or profits at the end of the day.

Timesheets go a long way in ensuring that you have a healthy and productive workforce. A timesheet will track employees’ working hours from the time they step in to when they sign out. Even better, the timesheet will determine whether or not an employee completed the assigned task on the stipulated time.

Such system in a workplace goes a long way to tune the workers’ mindset in a healthy way. An employee will become more organized in meeting the required standards and deadlines of assigned tasks. This way, the timesheet will ensure that the employee is more productive in a healthy and safe way.

Timesheets Ensure Accurate Invoicing

As mentioned before, timesheets are important in the workplace, not because of health and safety hazards such as injuries, but mainly for promoting psychological health and safety of both the employer and employees.

If you are an employer, you can attest to the fact that one of the most difficult things to deal with is employee remuneration. If you don’t have an effective system in place, you can easily lose track of employee remuneration in relation to performance. In such a scenario, one sure thing is that; you are going to lose money and your working environment will be less safe and healthy.

So, how can you use timesheets to solve all this? One of the biggest advantages of a timesheet is that it’s able to track an employee’s working hours. This makes the process of invoicing quite easy and accurate. With timesheets in place, you will manage to avoid any workplace politics involving remuneration and eventually have a positive, healthy and safer work environment.

Enhanced Decision-making Process

As a proprietor or CEO of any business, you are tasked with making informed decisions on almost every matter. Your employees will be looking up to you to make critical decisions that dictate the way they work, get paid and overall health and safety decisions. These decisions can make or break a business. So how can you successfully make an informed decision on critical matters to do with health and safety?

Well, one of the ways is by using a timesheet. When your entire business is running on a timesheet, you can easily keep track of all activities undertaken by your employees. Although the tasks done by your employees may seem minute, they ultimately play an important role in your decision making process.

A timesheet will present you an accurate picture of how employees perform in your business. With such knowledge at your fingertips, you can easily make an informed decision that will ultimately improve their health and safety standards. This way, you will save a lot of time and money to investigate on issues that affect the performance, health and safety of your business. A timesheet and health and safety management system will provide you this information, thus enhancing your decision making process.

Timesheets, Health and Safety: In a Nutshell

For any business to make a profit, all its employees should be highly motivated while working in a healthy and safe environment. However, in order to run a successful working environment that is also safe and healthy to your employees, you will need the help of a formidable timesheet. This will go a long way in providing you with all the information you require to make your working arena healthy and safe.

Written by Guest Post

Holly Shaw

 

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Measuring Labor Cost and How it Relates to Increased Productivity

Measuring Labor Cost and How it Relates to Increased Productivity

People provide their labor to businesses in exchange for wages, and they trade their unpaid leisure time for paid work time to make a living and to be able to purchase goods and services. Businesses, in turn, use this labor to produce goods and services demanded by consumers.

Economists divide the factors of production into four categories: land, labor, capital, and entrepreneurship.

The second factor of production is labor. Labor is the effort that people contribute to the production of goods and services. Your people are the most important assets in your business. They are also the assets that change most often and require the greatest amount of nurturing and development in order to deliver expected results. Effective workforce optimization depends on the right blend of training, performance standards, technology and motivation.

Labor Types

Types of Labor

Unskilled and Semi-skilled Labor - Unskilled laborers may lack basic skills necessary for satisfactory workplace performance. This means someone in your organization must train them, supervise them closely or provide extensive on-the-job training to ensure work is performed as specified.

Salary & Hourly (Wage Employees) -  Salaried and hourly wage labor are those employees whose compensation is in exchange for work done. Do you have an accurate picture of which projects or clients are getting the lion’s share of your employees’ hours? Not likely, unless you’re tracking in real time to see where you’re getting bogged down, where you’re getting the most bang for your buck, and where you might need to allocate more resources.

Contract Labor  - Independent contractors, on-demand or self-employed workers, and freelancers are individuals who do work for you but are not your official employees. If you rely on a contractors to get the job done, sometimes you do need to know when they are working and track how many hours they’ve put in. There are several reasons you might want to track how long, when, or even where your virtual team is working:

  • If you pay them by the hour, tracking contractor hours ensures you aren’t overpaying.
  • If you have contractors who bill by the hour, they need to know their billable hours to invoice accurately.
  • Knowing how contractors worked on a project helps you better estimate job costs so you can bid more accurately for similar jobs in the future.

Defining Productivity

Productivity is the amount of goods and services that the labor force creates.  It's measured by how much is produced by a certain amount of labor and of labor and a fixed amount of capital. The more they create, the higher their productivity. Companies seek ways to boost productivity because it increases their profit. High productivity creates a competitive advantage.

Productivity

Eliminating Calculation Errors increases productivity

When you process accurate time cards, you are better able to forecast your labor costs and plan your job cost more effectively. Keeping Excel spreadsheets or pen-and-paper time sheets is definitely no longer the best way to manage your staff. With an intuitive cloud-based time tracking tool (like ours) you are able to manage employee and contractor job cost and absenteeism on-the-go when needed, and create and process error-free payroll every time.

Understanding Data & Analytics increases productivity

Business analysis is an important part of running any company. Taking a look at your business resources and keeping good records of your employee time not only allows you manage project and job cost, it also allows you to forecast your labor costs better for future work.

Being able to pull up your labor data and analyze it to forecast real-time labor costs gives you a great starting point for planning and optimizing your budget.

Improving punctuality makes a difference, and having a way to monitor employee attendance habits keeps your team honest. It also provides a great way to perform employee reviews and audits. Having clear attendance data at your disposal allows you to plan better as well.

Bottom Line

Productivity doesn’t just increase your efficiency. If you do it right, it can also increase your income. True productivity isn’t about getting more things done. It’s about getting the right things done. More income for you means more charity for others, new jobs for others, and new products and services for others.

Let Hour Timesheet help your origination track your labor-force and your productivity today

DCAA Compliance: QuickBooks

DCAA Compliance: QuickBooks

Both QuickBooks Desktop and QuickBooks Online can be set up properly to be DCAA / FAR Compliant. The keys are Job Costing and Labor Distribution. The advantage that QuickBooks Desktop has over QuickBooks Online is it's integrated payroll module that permits direct charging of time direct to the General Ledger including Customer, Job, and Service Items.

QuickBooks Desktop

This interface of web-based time tracking software and payroll makes QuickBooks Desktop the superior tool for DCAA Compliance based on our experience with hundreds of clients over the course of several decades.

QuickBooks Online

While QuickBooks Online is not designed to meet the FAR and DCAA requirements, and it has some limitations on meeting all the requirements, there are ways to make a QuickBooks Online system meet all the government's requirements.

Keys to Compliance

Timesheet Kay Features

  • Employee time tracking posted daily with required explanations for edits and record locking
  • Printable timesheet reports
  • Policies & Procedures oriented toward FAR Compliance Criteria found in DCAA's SF-1408 pre-award audit checklist
  • Consistently applied labor dollar distribution accommodating uncompensated OT for salary exempt personnel
  • Indirect Cost Pools and the ability to compute and forecast Indirect Rates applied to Direct Costs under Cost Reimbursable Awards
  • Progress billing + Cumulative dollar values reported against award ceilings tied to cost proposals
  • Identification and segregation of Unallowable Costs as defined per FAR 31.205

We can Help

Hour Timesheet isn't just a timekeeping software provider for government contracts looking to pass a DCAA audit. We also partner with dozens of CPA firms and consultants who can assist you with the entire life cycle of getting a DCAA approved accounting system. Give us a call today and we can introduce you to our long list of partners.

Call 832.942.9556 today!

What is a Leave Management System

What is a Leave Management System?

Leave Management Systems

A Leave management system is the process used to handle any kind of time off request and to track time that employees are away from work.

Leave management is one of the simplest yet crucial HR activities that often consumes a significant portion of the HR team’s time. To succeed as an organization, having a reliable leave management system is important.

Benefits of Automating Employee Leave

Leave management software can provide basic guidelines for establishing extended leave policies. The software can automatically keep track of the amount of time that employees are out of work and can report that information as needed or required.

  • Eliminating Excessive Paper Work – It is quite common to find organizations, managing employee leaves across a series of spreadsheets or even using partially paper-based systems. Therefore, accurately tracking and recording employee time off become a real hassle.
  • FLSA Compliance –  In cases such as employee’s persistent short term absence or long term illness, it is imperative that employee benefit compliances is adhered to.
  • Tracking leave pattern – It is very essential to track employee leave patterns to monitor the amount of paid leave, sick leaves and holiday patterns within your organization. .

Features Available in Automated Leave Management Systems

  • Management and tracking of leave requests
  • Management and tracking of leave on employee timesheet
  • Online Approvals
  • Leave balance and history access on timesheet
  • Leave integration with payroll
  • Detailed reports
  • History of leaves rejected, approved and requested

Research has shown that poor leave management practices may negatively affect employee performance. It can also affect employee morale and therefore impact project deliverables.

Job Costing & Hour Timesheet

What is cost accounting? What are its objectives?

Are you finding it difficult to manage your expenses? You might be well aware that to run a business successfully, it is important to know to control your expenses. For this purpose, it’s important you keep a record of all your operating costs. This is where cost accounting comes into the picture. If you are wondering, how cost accounting is beneficial for your business, then you need to continue reading.

Modern methods of cost accounting first emerged in the manufacturing industries, though its advantages helped it spread quickly to other sectors. For many firms, cost accounting helps create and measure business strategy in a more organic way.

Cost accounting is distinct and separate from general financial accounting, which is regulated by generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) and is critical for creating financial statements. Instead, cost accounting aims to report, analyze and lead to the improvement of inter-business cost control and efficiency. Cost accounting is a system of operational analysis for management.

Cost Accounting Defined

Cost Accountancy is the process of accounting for cost. It begins with the recording of expenditure and ends with the preparation of statistical data. Cost Accounting is a formal mechanism of ascertaining and controlling the costs of products or services.

It is thus helpful to the management in decision making which also requires the costing information. However, if a firm keeps cost and financial accounts separately then their reconciliation is also necessary so as to verify the accuracy of both sets of accounts.

Cost accounting is also used for control purposes and guidance to management. It involves the ascertainment of the cost of every job, order, product, process or service.

Objectives of Cost Accounting

  1. Determination of Cost
  2. Basis for fixing selling prices
  3. Cost Control
  4. Cost Reduction
  5. Identifies and eliminates wastes like material, expenses, equipment, tools and so forth.
  6. Ensures optimum utilization of resources
  7. To correctly analyze the cost of both the process and operations.
  8. Determination of the profitability of each of the products and help management in the maximization of these profits.
  9. Help in the preparation of budgets and implementation of budgetary control.
  10. Aid management in the formulation and implementation of incentive bonus plans on the basis of productivity and cost savings.

Functions of Cost Accounting

  1. Bookkeeping - Bookkeeping involves recording of cost according to pre-arranged or predetermined classification.
  2. Cost Control - The cost control is exercised through cost collection, cost analysis, cost presentation and cost interpretation.
  3. Cost Analysis - Cost Analysis deals with determination of different relationship between cost and various determinants of costs.
  4. Cost Comparison - The cost of alternative products, activities, methods or areas is compared in the field of production or distribution.
  5. Cost Planning - Cost planning involves the accounting of all costs in the records in a proper manner.
  6. Cost Finding - Cost finding is the measurement or estimation of different products, departments or other segments of the company’s operations.

Summary

In every business, pre-planning your business strategy is crucial. Without a proper idea of the financial state of the organization, the business strategy is incomplete. When you are aware of the costs, you know where the profit margin is lacking. It becomes easier to eliminate the extra cost being incurred and make a better business finance strategy. Also, cost accounting helps you to keep an eye on the increasing costs. If the cost of raw materials is increasing annually, then it allows companies to decide a future course of action to reduce or control the increasing costs. For this purpose, a firm may consider approaching other vendors or decide to manufacture the raw materials themselves. Accordingly, the management can decide on future strategies for the company.

Let Hour Timesheet help you with capturing your job cost today. Try free for 30-days. No credit card required.

QuickBooks Timesheet & DCAA Compliance

Looking for specific QuickBooks timesheet features & DCAA compliance?

What type of firm needs time tracking software?

Most employers who hire hourly employees need to know the number of hours each employee has worked so that payroll can be calculated properly. Government contractors have have a different set of rules and are required to track time, both hours for exempt and non-exempt employees. Even organizations who only hire salaried employees have a need to track projects or tasks for successful project management. That's why finding the right time and attendance software is critical to your bottom line.

features are key

What to look for when evaluating timekeeping software.

When researching tools, make sure the software that you are evaluating includes the following:

  • daily reminders
  • job tracking
  • online approvals
  • detailed audit trail
  • correction time sheet workflow
  • mobile access (iOS and Google Play)
  • web clock
  • integration with your accounting system (QuickBooks Online & QuickBooks Desktop)
  • knowledge of government contracting and how federal governments contract audit agency dcaa regulations

Work smarter…. not harder.

Are you wasting time and money on the following?

  1. Correcting math errors on hours worked and other time activities
  2. Tracking down late or missing weekly timesheets
  3. Manually entering employee time worked into your accounting and/or payroll file?

If you answered yes to any of the questions above, It's time to let today's technology work for you. Intuit and QuickBooks have a marketplace where 3rd party vendors who offer time tracking are listed. Only companies that pass strict guidelines and follow Intuit's partner policies are listed on these sites.

View QuickBooks Online Marketplace Apps here

View QuickBooks Desktop Marketplace Apps here

Hour Timesheet was created for you; with your origination in mind. We have created a simplified solution that captures your complex situations. Give us a try FREE for 30 days. No credit card required. Our experts with over 20 years of industry experience are waiting to hear from you now. Hour Timesheet includes a QuickBooks timesheet import sync that makes your payroll process a snap!

Hour Timesheet can be a perfect tool that will integrate & sync with your QuickBooks Desktop Hosting keeping an eye on your reminders, daily tasks etc. Learn more about add-ons like Office 365 E3 suite for improving your team collaboration.

Incorporating Analytics in Timekeeping Software

Incorporating Analytics in Timekeeping Software

Incorporating Analytics in Timekeeping

Timekeeping software is an essential part of running an effective and profitable business. The days of employees manually inputting data on time sheets or using paper time cards to log work hours are long gone. Enter digital timekeeping software, which HRMS calls the updated and streamlined version of old-school timekeeping methods. With each employee clocking or swiping into the system automatically each day, today’s timekeeping software is able to collect massive amounts of time and attendance-related employee data in real-time. This is where data analytics enters the picture.

Through the combination of digital time tracking software data and analytics software, any company can plan the deployment of its workforce, administer leave and scheduled time off while managing performance, and calculating payroll more accurately. While the data for all of this has always been there, the help of artificial intelligence (AI)-enabled data analytics tools, companies can work towards these tasks much more efficiently and thus, increase over-all profits.

Modern employee time keeping devices are powered by two of the fastest-growing technologies: artificial intelligence (AI) and data analytics. These two innovations have already made massive changes in the way several industries operate. In an extensive post by Maryville University on the outlook for data analytics graduates, they note that the top industries to take advantage of analytics by 2020 will be banking, manufacturing, federal/central government, and professional services. Not only that, since more than 5% of Americans are already working from home, you can already say AI- and data analytics-backed businesses are the future.

There’s no denying that digital timekeeping is the next logical step when it comes to fostering business growth no matter the size of the industry. Here at Hour Timesheet we understand how critical it is for employers to gain insights into how much time their employees spend on everyday tasks including breaking down billable hours and accounting for time by projects and tasks. This data lets them see the typical day of an employee, which can help streamline a company's workflow and create more achievable goals while immediately adding real-time analysis to assist with the ability to manage projects and estimate projects .

Good timekeeping software with an intuitive interface also allows managers to take care of employees’ interests allowing employees to track time daily, weekly or hourly online and in real-time. Popular software platforms like Intuit's QuickBooks desktop and online solutions like Hour Timesheet combine timekeeping with accounting software providing timesheet data to automatically sync between the two systems. Not only is it a more affordable way to manage a company’s invoicing and payroll, but it’s also a great way to keep track of an employee’s leave balance history. We recognize the importance of a timekeeping software like Hour Timesheet that can also track leave and work hours online and on a mobile time clock app. This is because it’s more accurate than the typical Excel spreadsheet. A cloud-hosted service time management provider such as Hour Timesheet allows workers to do their jobs remotely, without employers having to worry about tracking their work time, keeping tabs on leave and absence time, and making sure they’re working as efficiently as they would if they were in an office. Any dip in performance can be correlated to the data obtained from the employee timesheets.

Timekeeping software is a powerful tool that companies must use to improve their overall efficiency. It gives employees more control over the time they spend at work, and allows employers to accurately track how much time is spent on different projects. This allows the company to create a positive culture with an improved work/life balance.

Article solely for the use of hourtimesheet.com

Written by Alicia Clay

Indirect Cost Pools

You Can’t Manage What You Can’t Measure

A key aspect of complying with government regulations is creating processes and utilizing software tools that allow your organization to be compliant. Because we all know you can't manage what you can't measure, it is important to understand the basic categories of your organization's indirect cost pools and to establish a mechanism to efficiently track employee time against these pools.

Direct costs are traceable to the production of a specific good or service. Labor and direct materials, which are used in creating a specific product or service, constitute most direct costs.

Indirect costs are those cost necessary to keep your business in operation. Indirect labor costs make the production of cost objects possible but aren't assigned to a specific product.

Indirect Cost Pools

Overhead - indirect costs incurred that are not direct costs, but that can be attributed to a specific revenue-generating project or job.   Any indirect labor or expenses that can be attributed to a certain project can then be distributed across those projects based on the projects’ direct labor hours, direct labor costs, or direct material costs

Fringe costs - include employee related costs including payroll taxes, fringe benefits such as health insurance and compensated absences (vacation, holiday and sick time).

General and Administrative (G&A) Expenses. These are management, financial, and other expenses related to the general management and administration of the business. To be considered a G&A Expense, the expenditure must be incurred by, or allocated to, the general business unit. Examples of G&A Expense include:

  • Salary and other costs of the executive staff of the corporate or home office.
  • Salary and other costs of such staff services as legal, accounting, public relations, and financial offices
  • Selling and marketing expenses

UNUSUAL INDIRECT-COST

Two major types of indirect costs are accounted for in a very unique way in the government contracting environment.

  • IR&D consists of contractor research and development efforts not performed under contract or grant and not required for the preparation of a specific bid or proposal, either government or commercial. IR&D is funded and managed at the contractor’s discretion from contractor-controlled resources.
  • B&P is comprised of contractor efforts to prepare, submit, and support bids and proposals, either government or commercial, whether or not the bid is successful.

Contract Type Matters

To recognize the impact that changes in indirect cost rates have on both the contractor and the government, it is vital to understand the various types of contracts used in government work. In some cases, increases in indirect costs are totally or partially paid by the customer.

  • A cost-reimbursement contract is used when the cost of contract performance cannot be predicted with accuracy, such as in the development of weapons systems.
  • Cost-plus-fixed-fee (CPFF) contract, the contractor is reimbursed for his actual cost, subject to certain government requirements regarding allowability, plus a negotiated fixed fee.
  • A cost-plus-incentive-fee contract (CPIF) is a cost-reimbursement contract that provides for a fee that is adjusted by a formula according to the relationship of total allowable costs to target costs. The target cost, target fee, minimum and maximum fee, and the fee-adjustment formula are negotiated at the outset. The fee paid to the contractor is negotiated after contract performance and final actual costs are determined, using the formula and the minimum and maximum fees.
Additional Resources

DEFENSE CONTRACT AUDIT AGENCY INFORMATION FOR CONTRACTORS

Making technology work for you

Making Technology Work For You

Today’s technology moves so fast that it’s not easy to keep up with. It seems like new tools are surfacing every day to help business owners and entrepreneurs save time, money and boost productivity. New technology empowers business owners to achieve what they set out to do and allows them to be creative while maintaining a high level of productivity. Businesses that want to stay relevant know that they must incorporate new technologies into their company’s growth strategy.

The trick to making technology work for you and your team will depend on how it’s integrated. You can use these tips to help your employees to successfully embrace technology:

1. Highlight the Benefits

Technology can do so much to make our lives easier, but the process of learning new technology can still be daunting. To ensure team member buy-in, help them understand the decision to implement new technology. Identify the limitations or problems in the current tools or software. Help your users see how technology could solve these problems. Even though fear is normal in the face of change, we can’t let fear stop us from moving forward.

2. Find Your Champions

There are always employees who readily accept new technology. These are your champions! They can help convince reluctant coworkers where no one else can. Have them be available for questions and training to those who are slower to adopt. Some employees may not be convinced of the benefits of technology until they see someone else do it.

3. Provide Training

Training is critical to the successful adoption of new technology. You must ensure that team members of all levels of technological know-how have the access they need to learn at their own speed. Training can be looked at as a two-step process: You need training from external sources (free at Hour Timesheet), and then you need a core group of internal employees who are comfortable in the new system and can help others if needed.

REASONS YOUR BUSINESS SHOULD EMBRACE TECHNOLOGY

By embracing today’s new technology your company will reap the benefits that keep them ahead of their competitors who fail to embrace technology, including:

  1. Staying connected
  2. Encouraging timely and accurate input
  3. Ability to monitor employee productivity
  4. Improving manager productivity
  5. Improving employee accountability
  6. Access to advanced business reporting and analysis
Additional Links

HTS QuickBooks Online Marketplace Listing

HTS QuickBooks Desktop Marketplace Listing

HTS Android Download Link in Google Play

HTS iOP Download Link in Apple Store

FLSA Timekeeping Requirements

FLSA Timekeeping Requirements

Who does FLSA apply to?

One of the FLSA Timekeeping Requirements is that hourly employees must be paid at least the minimum wage and not less than one and one-half times their regular rates of pay for overtime hours worked.

What are the timekeeping recordkeeping requirements?

Every covered employer must keep certain records for each non-exempt worker. The department of labor requires accurate records. The following is a listing of the basic records that an employer must maintain:

  • Time and day of week when employee's workweek begins
  • Time worked each day
  • Total hours worked each workweek and pay period
  • Total daily or weekly straight-time hours
  • Total overtime hours for the workweek

Track Overtime | California Over Time

What type of record should be retained?

Each employer shall preserve for at least three years payroll records, collective bargaining agreements, sales and purchase records. Records on which wage computations are based should be retained for two years, i.e., time cards and piece work tickets, wage rate tables, work and time schedules, and records of additions to or deductions from wages.

What type of timekeeping is best?

Employers may use any timekeeping method they choose. For example, they may use a time clock, have a timekeeper keep track of employee's work hours, or tell their workers to write their own times on the records. Any timekeeping plan is acceptable as long as it is complete and accurate

Android App | Time Tracking Android App | Time Tracker | Leave Management

What about employees on irregular work schedules?

Many employees work on a fixed schedule from which they seldom vary. The employer may keep a record showing the exact schedule of daily and weekly hours and merely indicate that the worker did follow the schedule. When a worker is on a job for a longer or shorter period of time than the schedule shows, the employer must record the number of hours the worker actually worked, on an exception basis.

Are timesheets required by law?

Employers may use any timekeeping method they choose. For example, they may use a time clock, have a timekeeper keep track of employee's work hours, or tell their workers to write their own times on the records. Any timekeeping plan is acceptable as long as it is complete and accurate.

Timesheets are a legal document, which are the source of payroll transactions, and are related to a project, customer invoicing. Timesheets serve as the legal authority to pay an employee. ... For example, the timesheet policy might require that time worked be reported accurately on the date that such work was performed.

Can my boss alter my timesheet?

While falsification of an employee's time sheet can be a serious offense, it isn't illegal for a supervisor or employer to change an employee's time sheet –as long as it reflects the correct hours that were worked.

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