Smart Phone Apps for Builders: TSheets Time Tracker with GPS Support - Fine Homebuilding

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Digital Job Site

Digital Job Site


Smart Phone Apps for Builders: TSheets Time Tracker with GPS Support

comments (3) September 9th, 2011 in Blogs
AARONLUBECK Aaron Lubeck, Blogger


iTunes: Track employee time – anywhere and any way you want. From freelancers to 5000 employee corporations with multiple locations, TSheets makes time and labor management easy.

Innovative, responsive and easy to use, the TSheets iPhone app aligns with your existing or new TSheets account (sign up for a free trial on the app or at www.tsheets.com), to open up the flexibility, mobility, and accountability of the working day.

One of the only mobile apps compliant with Department of Labor (DOL time sheet) standards, TSheets includes clock in/out and manual entry, GPS and mapping features, offline capabilities, and real-time syncing and reporting.

For the mobile world of business, TSheets offers time tracking and management and reporting for employees and freelancers on the move.

In the April/May issue of Fine Homebuilding, in a section labeled "Four Apps I Wish I Had," I outlined four software services highly needed by the construction industry. The one I saw as most pressing was a Geo-referenced Crew and Time Tracker, essentially an application that allows a crew to clock in and clock out while simultaneously showing a supervisor where everyone is at that moment, in real time. That app has now arrived.

TSheets is an application attached to and driven by its online cloud-based software, which allows everyone to clock in remotely via phone, with no paper waste, travel waste, or human resource department required.

This means both labor costs wasted clocking in and clocking out, and time wasted driving to the office to perform payroll disappear, as does all the lost productivity charged to fudged timesheets. The platform also performs certified payroll, needed for many government funded and union performed projects, which is nearly unheard of in the construction arena for mobile apps.

Ideally, your crew has smart phones, which allows them to clock in and out via the TSheets application. But that is not necessary. Given many construction workers are a little behind the curve in all things technology, they can also clock in and out via text messaging, web or phone call. Job codes allow accountants to properly book work to the appropriate job and budget line, and allow managers to track profit and loss by category (masonry/carpentry/demolition, etc.). A builder can use as many job codes as he likes.

All this data syncs in real time into a cloud, so as the manager at the office, you can get real-time pictures of what is happening on your construction site, allowing you to make better decisions about how best to allocate resources.

TSheets' web dashboard is nice and intuitive. It is a rare application that aggregates data via phone and presents it in clear and concise ways on the web, including automated analysis tools. The reports, for example, automatically create a nice pie graph to break down where each employee spent their time. This is helpful for bidding future jobs and managing productivity. (How many hours did we actually spend painting the Smiths' home?) In theory, other software allows for this data to be deducted, but in practice many managers are too busy to take that extra step to analyze the information and make supervisory adjustments. A pie graph is a nice tool to facilitate that process.

TSheets is partnered with ADP (a payroll processor), and is programmed to sync with most major accounting software. Nearly every builder I know uses Quickbooks, for which TSheets offers specific integration advice.

The costs are fair; of the three pricing levels, most companies will trend to the $20/mo + $5 per user (7.27.11), meaning a company of five would be $35/mo and $420/yr. Combined with Intuit’s Quickbooks Payroll Assisted more than reasonable turnkey $69/mo, builders eliminate nearly all HR burden of running payroll. $69/mo may seem a bit steep, especially compared to the average app price of around $1, but that is comparing apples to oranges. TSheets is much more than an app. And the payroll process at my company sometimes took one person up to two days per pay cycle, twice per month, meaning we may have been paying an accountant in excess of $1000/mo for the same process.

For folks with more than one site running, and multiple crews on payroll, this app is a no-brainer tracking solution. The 14-day free trial is available here: http://www.tsheets.com/online-time-clock-software-pricing.php

 

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posted in: Blogs, business, smart phone

Comments (3)

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Timesheet Timesheet writes: I would say, its not just for builders, but time tracking or time clock is necessary for all employees or employers irrespective of which sector or industry they belong. Time Clock
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