Time tracking can be an incredibly useful managerial tool, for both those in leading positions and the employees themselves. However, there is sometimes a negative stigma associated with employee monitoring that could cause some push back when you try to implement it.

If you would like to start using time tracking, but you are afraid there might be a negative backlash, consider these steps that can help your team understand the benefits of tracking time.

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Step 1: Propose the change to leaders, first

If you’re introducing a new system into the company, it’s better to do it gradually. Start with the leaders and get them using the software so they understand how it works and the benefits to adopting it. Once they’re using and loving the software, then introduce time tracking to the rest of the team. There are several reasons to do this:

  • You’ll need the support of your managers when introducing time tracking to all teams
  • Managers should already understand how everything works before they introduce the new software
  • Team leaders must be familiar with the software to answer any questions quickly and correctly

Step 2: Present it as a solution to a problem

When you first introduce time tracking to your employees, present it as a solution to their problems. Explain how it will help them work better and more efficiently. When they can see the benefits of doing it, they’ll be more welcoming to the change.

For example, when they can track time to individual tasks and projects with randomized screenshots, team members wouldn’t have to send daily reports anymore. If you wanted to see what they’ve been up to, simply scroll through the screenshots to get a clear picture of what they worked on.

Measuring activity levels is a great way to show proof of work since they’re calculated from mouse movements and keystrokes. Your team members wouldn’t have to justify the time they bill to anyone because their activity levels prove they were active and productive.

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If you want to see more ways that time tracking has helped remote employees work better, check out what Hubstaff’s 100% distributed team has to say about using our software.

Step 3: Show how it aligns with the company’s shared vision

Your employees should already know and support the company vision, so show them how time tracking aligns with it. Here are a few things you could explain to connect the company vision with time tracking for employees.

  • If your company strives to be efficient – Time tracking means automatic time sheets, the ability to start and end work seamlessly with a push of a button, and easy invoicing thanks to automatic reports.
  • If your company strives to be transparent – Time tracking provides insight into how employees work so managers can see if there are any problems, when a project is taking too much time, and so they can structure the team and projects better.
  • If your company strives to be honest – Time tracking software keeps everyone accountable, so team members who aren’t pulling their fair share can be addressed. That way, employees and leadership both enjoy working with top talent.

Step 4: Make it easy

Once you choose the best tool with features that will help your company, be sure to create a seamless workflow with useful software. For example, if you ask your team to start tracking time, make sure they have their task list ready, or a way to add tasks to the time tracker.

Here are a few tips to make time tracking for employees as simple and easy as possible;

  • Use a time tracker that works with multiple operating systems; Mac, Windows, and Linux.
  • Get software that doesn’t take up much memory. It should be lightweight and run in the background.
  • Find a time tracker that will work even if your employees are offline.
  • Use a time tracker that will integrate with the project management tool you’re already using.
  • Make sure your time tracker collects accurate data, reliably so they don’t have to think about it.

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Step 5: Ask for input

Give your team multiple time tracking options to choose from so you can find the best working arrangement. For example, your developers may ask you to find a time tracking option that integrates with Pivotal Tracker, and your managers may ask for an option that allows their team to attach notes to time entries. Once you know what everyone needs out of the new software, you can adjust and fine tune.

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Step 6: Give them an incentive to use it

Give your employees some incentive to use the time tracking software. You could combine all the time they save working more efficiently into paid leave, give a small bonus when all of their time is tracked with the new software, or introduce remote work options.

Time tracking enables remote work by allowing those who are serious about it to prove their worth and quickly demonstrate their ability and dedication. By introducing time tracking software for employees, you can also give them the chance to prove themselves as remote workers. Try starting key members of your team off with one remote day of work a week, then increase it as you and your team sees fit.

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Step 7: Enforce the policy

The most important thing about introducing time tracking for employees is to enforce the rule. It will be tough at first, especially if there are some team members who are used to the old system and resist the new. However, if you are lax with some team members about time tracking, it isn’t fair to the others and the system will fall apart. It’s absolutely crucial that you enforce your new time tracking policy and make it clear that everyone must use it in order to get paid on time.