This guest post was written by the team at ClickTime, a provider of online timesheet software and productivity tools for organizations of all sizes.
Are you a nonprofit professional looking to boost productivity within your workplace? Are you a growing organization seeking efficient tools to bring your team to the next level? If you’re looking for a new time-saving strategy, perhaps internal time tracking is the answer you’ve been looking for.
Here at ClickTime, we value efficiency, productivity, and structure in the workplace. We understand how strong time tracking tools and strategies can benefit every part of your internal operations, from time management to human resources needs, and give you a strong foundation on which to improve your processes over time.
So, how can time tracking meet these needs and work to boost your organization’s productivity? Effective time tracking solutions can offer the following benefits to your nonprofit:
- Boosted efficiency.
- Employee engagement.
- Performance management.
- Modern technology.
- Key data insights.
Ready to learn more about the perks of time tracking for nonprofits? Let’s jump in!
1. Boosted efficiency.
Increased efficiency in your internal workflows is one of the most obvious advantages of time tracking for nonprofits. Time tracking solutions lead to:
- Accuracy of daily planning per staff member. As you create plans to guide your employees’ daily tasks, timesheet tools can greatly simplify the process. By analyzing previously completed projects, you get a much better understanding of the time that is required for each step, and can produce a more accurate schedule.
- Even distribution of tasks between staff. Similarly, you’ll be able to better divide big projects and daily tasks across your team and ensure that no one employee has too heavy of a workload while others are lacking.
- More effective allocation of resources. Nonprofits often have limited resources (time, money, and/or staff), but time tracking and timesheet software can maximize the impact that your available resources ultimately have by showing you where and when the most time and attention is needed.
When you take advantage of time tracking, you’ll start to see higher levels of productivity within the organization in no time.
2. Employee engagement.
Every employer is constantly looking for the best way to manage their staff in ways that are both productive and engaging. Employee engagement is crucial to keeping up the morale of your team, and thus is one of the key roles of HR professionals.
Online time tracking can boost employee engagement by providing:
- A positive work environment. With time tracking software, employees don’t have to worry about whether they’re on track with the organization’s goals or stress about which tasks to focus on. A more structured and organized workplace is a happier workplace.
- Increased retention rates. With records of employees’ daily tasks, it becomes much easier to recognize and celebrate your team’s accomplishments. When employees feel recognized, they are more likely to stay with your organization— boosting employee retention and saving you time and money.
- Openness to input. Time tracking also opens up an opportunity to receive employee feedback concerning daily tasks and larger projects. Employees may become frustrated if time allocated for each task is insufficient for the work required, so be sure to listen and take employee input into consideration when creating such plans.
But your time tracking doesn’t have to be limited to employees— you can choose to manage your most dedicated volunteers with more structured time-tracking, as well!
3. Performance management.
Performance management tracks and reports on the successes of your organization by ensuring that sufficient results are being produced by team members. For most effective results, your performance management process needs to be able to pull from concrete analytics whenever necessary rather than rely solely on verbal or quantitative feedback.
Time tracking can help you with this key step by:
- Documenting employee performance.
- Demonstrating concrete improvements over time.
- Providing insights into possible promotions.
- Informing you when changes are necessary.
Time tracking, especially when combined with performance management software, is an excellent way to make sure you’re getting the most impact out of your organization and developing your team’s skill in effective ways.
As you know, time is money. It costs to hire and train staff, purchase the right tools, and run your daily operations. That’s just part of managing any organization. Yet in order to create the most impact and do great things for your cause, it is crucial that you know when, where, and how to cut costs.
Time tracking can inform important financial decisions by:
- Helping to reduce overhead costs. For most nonprofit organizations, staffing makes up the largest portion of the overhead budget. Time tracking can help save money by reducing the time spent manually inputting timesheet information, creating schedules and to-do lists, and allocating tasks, freeing up more staff time to do other key activities, like fundraising!
- Providing accurate staffing projections. Being under- or over-staffed can each create serious challenges for an organization. If you’re understaffed, your employees will be stretched too thin and tasks are sure to fall through the cracks. If you’re overstaffed, employee time is not being used efficiently— and you’re wasting money.
- Keeping within budgets. Accurate time tracking is key to ensuring an accurate budget. Timesheets give you a closer look at the time required to complete a project, which gives you a better estimate of the total internal cost of any project, program, or initiative you take on.
Keeping up with effective time tracking habits are a great way to save on unnecessary expenses, and allocate your resources better for the necessary ones. Click here to see other ways nonprofit timesheets can save you money.
5. Modern technology.
In the digital age, everything is done with a computer. It’s faster, more efficient, better organized, and able to keep up with the constant shifting of technological tools. Therefore, physical timesheets with a pen and paper are a bit outdated, not to mention inefficient over the long run.
Using digital time tracking solutions allows your organization to:
- Keep up with modern tools. It’s always a good idea to stay as up-to-date as possible with new tools. As a nonprofit, instilling a culture of growth and innovation, even in small ways, can help to communicate to your team and donors that you take your work seriously.
- Go mobile-friendly. Mobile-friendly time tracking tools are perfect for inputting tasks on-the-go, especially for out-of-office tasks and employees that are never in one place for very long!
If you’re looking to upgrade to a more contemporary toolbox, looking for outside support can be a smart move. Explore this guide to nonprofit tech strategy consulting by DNL OmniMedia to learn about the key times or situations when this investment is most appropriate.
6. Key data insights.
In addition to collecting all of this productivity data in your timesheets, time tracking software can also take it a step further. A compilation of key information from time tracking reports can become one of your greatest tools. These reports can then provide detailed insights into your nonprofit’s internal workflows, which can become invaluable in the search for outside funding through grants or major gifts.
Examples of powerful data reports can include insights on:
- Project budgeting and expense reports
- Billable hours
- Monthly funding source percentages
- Functional expenses
- Program costs
- Employee compliance
- Understaffed/overstaffed programs
When it comes to illustrating your operations, looking for ways to improve, and making your case for support, the more data the better! With these time tracking resources, you’ll have what you need to share with investors, donors, and constituents to prove your transparency and financial responsibility.
As you continue to manage and grow your nonprofit organization, you’ll begin to notice new needs arise. It’ll be harder (and maybe even impossible) to keep track of all your operations by yourself. Time tracking software and strategies can provide an invaluable foundation from which the rest of your operations and strategies will grow. Good luck!