How can I create an Excel sheet so that I can track the amount of hours that I spend on a project to bill clients?
I realize this is an old question, but I have to post as I just built this exact solution in Excel that I want people to download and use for free, if it can help them.But let me speak for a moment as to why you might want to do time tracking in Excel in the first place, when there are plenty of quality tools on the market for solo and team time tracking.If you already own and know how to use Excel - and want to spend your time focusing on billable work, then you might want to just use a spreadsheet instead of researching, selecting, configuring, and learning how to use a new tool.If you are just getting started - and you don’t really know what you want out of a time tracking tool yet - then you might decide to postpone adopting a more involved tool until you do know what you want. There are many time tracking tools on the market - but they are not all the same. There is, in fact, a broad spectrum of feature sets available. Starting with a simple Excel based time tracking solution allows you to get some experience with what you actually need, and what fits your situation. Excel is extremely flexible and you can alter your solution as needed, as you progress in your start-up journey. But if you adopt a tool - and perhaps even pay for a whole year without understanding what you really need - you may either end up wasting your budget or living with something you’d rather not have purchased.If you are a solo freelancer, or the lead of a micro team (2 or 3 team members) then a time tracking solution in Excel might be for you not only because it is simple and easily approached - but also because it is portable. As your team grows and you are ready to select and use a dedicated time tracking solution - there is a great chance (depending on what tool you select) that you may be able to import your excel data into the new tool. And while that may not be strictly necessary - its useful to have your complete reporting history in one tool. Meanwhile you can get to work and worry about what tool you’ll ultimately use later.I’m the founder of a new time tracking tool, called TimeSnap, that is currently in beta and will very soon launch. But I realize that not everyone is at a point where they are willing, or even ready, or have the budget to adopt a full blown time tracking solution. So I built a simple Excel based time tracking solution because anyone who is billing clients for hourly work, or paying staff for hourly work will need to have some capability to track time. That can be done, more than adequately, for many freelancers and micro teams using this spreadsheet. And when their businesses grow beyond what this spreadsheet can handle - well - I do hope they will give my tool a try!This spreadsheet is simple, but at the same time pretty helpful, and its of course 100% free. It allows you to keep a list of clients and projects, and the billing rates to use for each, a list of staff and their pay rates, and of course the time entry area where you enter your hours and a note, if needed, about the task you worked on. The article also includes information on how to use Excel’s features to protect sensitive data, such as billing rates and staff pay rates. This is important because you may not want everyone who accesses the spreadsheet to be able to see that information. Also the spreadsheet has a very helpful reporting feature where you can filter by start and end dates, client, project, staff member, or any combination thereof, and it will list for you all the matching time entries and prsums for hours, billable amounts for your clients, and payable amounts for your staff. With this information you can easily create accurate billing and process your payroll.I wrote a detailed step by step article on how to build this spreadsheet, and how to use it. But you can also download the completed and ready to use spreadsheet.If this makes sense for your situation, please check it out. Here is the link.Time Tracking in Excel