Surely there's a productivity tracker to fit our needs?
August 26, 2013 2:22 PM   Subscribe

I work for a 25-person agency with horrifically outdated software practices. Help us join the 21st century of project and time tracking!

Our 25-person company is a mix of writers, project managers and designers. We use Microsoft Dynamics GP to track our time (through Personal Data Keeper) and handle the rest of our accounting/invoicing/financials.

We can only enter our time through the desktop software, so remote workers have to enter their time in advance, or email it to a coworker to submit. The only way to know how much of our budget we've used for a particular project is to ask our Office Manager to print out an unwieldy spreadsheet. If we want it sorted by individual or discipline, the spreadsheet must be reprinted. We track our internal capacity through a Google doc, and our weekly productivity through an Excel sheet. This is madness.

What we need is a simple time tracking system (ideally one that can be accessed remotely) that lets us input our hours by project, and allow any given person to pull up their own records, or that of a project team to date. If it also sends reminders when a project is at a certain percentage of its budget and similarly awesome features, so much the better!

I've looked at Harvest and a few similar invoicing programs and loved their simplicity and features. But what would an Ask Metafilter question be without a few special snowflake details?

- Each member of our company has three (or more) hourly rates. These rates are not determined by project or discipline, but by difficulty of the task at hand. So for the same project, I might bill 2.5 hours at one rate, and .75 hours at a different rate. This doesn't even take into account non-billable work. Most software only allows you you to set one rate per person (or project, or discipline). Our current system accommodates our funky billing rates, but doesn't have any of the other features we desire.

- Any one of our 25 associates might contribute to a project, so any given person has to be able to bill to any given project--not just the ones he or she might be "assigned to".

- Because our timesheets currently feed into Microsoft GP, our new time tracking system would either need to integrate with Microsoft GP accounting, or have a fairly robust financial package of its own. Harvest allows you to invoice clients, but doesn't offer any internal finance management.

We're open to solutions that involve some development costs through open API or other customization if needed. Is there a solution out there for us?

Thanks mefites!
posted by meghosaurus to Computers & Internet (3 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Take a look at:

I know it tracks time, has real-time timers as well as letting you enter time manually, supports multiple people on any given project, and time can be billable or non-billable. What you'll have to do some digging on is the multiple rates thing. It has worked well for a web developer I work with on my day job as well as my freelance work.
posted by randomkeystrike at 2:30 PM on August 26, 2013
posted by rmd1023 at 3:07 PM on August 26, 2013

We use Timeforce. It plugs into Quickbooks for accounting purposes. It has a ton of features we never use, but it works quite well for our 20-person office.

When clocking into a job, you chose both the job and the task. So it will total hours for a job, sorted by task. So each task can be billed at a different rate.
posted by hydra77 at 11:43 PM on August 26, 2013

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