Every software and web developer has probably heard that hourly time tracking just doesn’t stick in this line of work. They name different reasons: programmers' output can be very uneven and may be dramatically different from day to day or even from hour to hour, the work involves a lot of backtracking and so on. However, it is just one side of the coin. The full truth is that time tracking may still bring tremendous benefits, far outweighing the disadvantages, both real and imaginary.
You Learn How Productive You and Your Employees Are
It doesn’t matter whether you are a freelance contractor or head of a software development firm, it always pays to know exactly how much you can do in a set amount of time. It will allow you to better negotiate deadlines with your future clients, teach you your limitations and provide you with hints as to how you can broaden them.
It Will Help You Track Time Spent on Individual Projects
If you know how much time you or your company spends on each and every project you deal with, you will be able to define if this line of work is effective at all. For example, if projects that don't pay very well occupy inordinately large amounts of time, it may be a good idea to drop them in favor of something that can be done quicker and for greater monetary rewards. Or you can concentrate on polishing the procedure and making them less time-consuming.
It Won’t Take Time or Energy
In the past, time tracking often did more harm than good, especially in large companies. To effectively track the time of many employees, one needed their cooperation, additional personnel that would keep an eye on the procedure and prepare generalized reports, and a lot of paperwork. Today, luckily for all involved, there is time tracking software for developers that greatly simplifies the entire process and makes it easy to both implement and maintain time tracking solutions. In other words – to start tracking your time you will have to simply install the software and put in a little bit of data every now and then. No manually-drawn spreadsheets, complicated timetables or spying on your employees.
It Helps to Keep an Eye on the Project’s Budget
Every project has a limited budget, which inevitably influences long- and short-term planning. And in order to estimate this budget and actively monitor it in the process of project realization, an effective time tracking solution will be priceless – you will quickly learn the importance of it once you start working on relatively big projects with high production values.