Two years ago, we started down the route of time tracking on mobile devices for field and remote workers. All data from the mobile devices synced back into Salesforce in near real-time. Our goal was to give field workers the ability to get their work times into Salesforce on a mobile. We did build a simple way to track time automatically within Salesforce, but it was quite limited in functionality.
From our market research, we saw that there was a need for time tracking data to be synced to Salesforce. Since invoicing, project management and payroll were all within Salesforce, that work hours should be in Salesforce too made sense. PSA apps, ERP apps… all included time tracking as a part of their functionality. And those apps tracked work time for employees who worked within Salesforce. So, we decided that we would not play in that space – at the time.
Mobile and web apps
Our initial focus was on the mobile space where field workers and remote workers could track their work times. Our goal was to enable workers to track time easily and with little fuss on their familiar phones. Soon after, based on customer requests, we rolled out a Web-based Time Tracker. This was meant for workers who were not comfortable using mobile apps. The one big feature that we added in the Web version was the ability for users to enter time after the fact. This enabled workers to enter their time at the end of the day. Soon we rolled out the capability to enter multiple lines on a timesheet. Now, people who worked on multiple jobs during the day could enter a full timesheet once a day or week.
With more customer requests, we added more functionality to both the Web and the mobile apps. We introduced configurable fields that could be displayed on both the mobile and on web apps. A new Team time tracking app on the mobile lets a single Team Lead check her entire team in. We updated the mobile app to allow configurable geo-tracking and photographs. This feature allowed us to minimize buddy punching. We introduced addresses that could be opened in Google/Apple maps to help field people find their next job-site. On the web app, we added an Approval mechanism for timesheets. Now managers and supervisors can approve/reject time entries for team members.
Over a year and a half, both the mobile app and the web apps grew with more functionality. But we did not do much on the Salesforce time tracking functionality.
Time Tracking in Salesforce
Over this calendar year, though, we’ve seen a renewed interest in time tracking inside Salesforce. To the point where now, over 60% of our leads are looking for Time Tracking within Salesforce.
The May 2019 EU Court of Justice ruling and the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requirements have pushed time tracking to center stage. Any business that has employees is now affected by regulatory compliance for time worked, overtime calculation and break time compliance. And that has pushed interest in time tracking within Salesforce.
Luckily for us, because of our Mobile app, we had a lot of functionality within Salesforce already. The objects themselves, reports, dashboards – all these existed. We have now added a number of other functions that make life easier with Salesforce. Some examples:
- A Lightning component that can be added as a Time Tracker pop-up from the Salesforce utility bar, to track time against ANY object, including the one that the user is currently working on.
- A multi-check in time tracking option that helps enter their complete timesheet for a day or a week at a time, after-the-fact.
- A Summary Timesheet page that helps users within Salesforce select a date and add/see all the time entries for that day, so users can make sure they’ve recorded all their work for a given date.
Overall, we now have one of the strongest offerings for time tracking, be it on the mobile, on the Web or within Salesforce. And the best part is that you could have a combination of users, some using our mobile app, some on the web and others inside Salesforce. Regardless of where the time tracking happens, Salesforce is the single repository of all time tracking data. So integration with payroll, invoicing and ERP systems becomes that much easier.
We are thrilled to say now that we are the Timekeepers for Salesforce!