What is Time Recording?

Last week for Time Management Tuesday I wrote about Toggl, an online time recording product that I use for my website and blog.

So what exactly is time recording or time tracking?

This post is intended as an introduction for those of you who don’t use it professionally, but may want to consider using time recording for your start-up, blog or side hustle.

A time recording system allows you to record start and finish times so that the time spent on an activity can be recorded.  This could be a project as a whole or could be broken down into specific tasks.

A lot of professionals use time recording in their day job whether it is for billing for their time or booking to a cost code for a large scale project practices are decided and dictated by industry practice.

Today I want to tell you that you too can use time recording at home as a time management practice. You can use it for:

  1. Your Blog;
  2. Your Business;
  3. Your Art and other Crafty projects;
  4. Your Services.

What ever you use it for – time recording can be a useful tool.

How much you use a process like
time recording will depend on what your business or product is – but
just because you don’t or can’t use it on a daily basis does not mean that it
does not have advantages.

Last year when I first started blogging at Printed Portal I wrote about how I did time recording – simply with a stopwatch and some Filofax inserts and I also used a number of personalised inserts to manage my time recording. I found that it helped plan my blogging time much more effectively. I originally got the idea from one of Helen Conway’s guest posts on Philofaxy last year. It is a great post – worth a read.

I won’t lie setting up a time recording system and getting into the mind set can be frustrated and use up your precious time. So it is important to keep it as simple as you can (but more on that next week).  For now I want to explain a bit more about the benefits of time recording.

Advantages of Time Recording

There are plenty of advantages for time recording – these are my favourites, and reasons why I believe that everyone should use an element of time recording:

  • By keeping a record you know EXACTLY how you have been spending your time.
  • By KNOWING how you spend your time, you can evaluate how you are spending your time and identify areas for improvement.
  • By EVALUATING how you spend your time you can change what you do to ensure the time that you do have is well spent.
  • The practice of Time Recording teaches you to FOCUS on one activity at a time, deters you from procrastinating and enables you to get more done.
  • Time Recording helps you PLAN current and future projects by enabling you to use the data to produce more accurate estimates and schedule and budget your time.
  • Time Recording provides information that can be used for BILLING your time, services or product.
  • Time Recording gives you an insight into the cost and VALUE of your work.

Do you record your time? If so, what do you think the best advantages are?  Share your experiences in the comments.

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