Timesheet reminder

Timesheet Reminders: 10 Ways To Remind Your Team To Submit Their Timesheets

For most managers, timesheet reminders are a necessary evil. They ensure that all team members submit their time cards on time and that the person or persons conducting payroll have everything they need to complete the process accurately and on time.

But are timesheet reminders absolutely necessary? Is there a better way to gather all the data before payday?

In this article, we discuss some of the best timesheet reminders for your business and introduce you to a solution that can streamline the way your team and your business operate.

Table of contents

What are timesheet reminders?

Timesheet reminder on the phone

At their most basic, timesheet reminders are prompts that encourage team members to fill out and submit their time card (or other record of hours worked) for the last pay period.

As we’ll discuss in more detail later on in this article, timesheet reminders can take many forms, including:

  • Digital
  • Video
  • Audio
  • Hard copy
  • Face-to-face

Before the mid-2000s, hard copy and face-to-face timesheet reminders were pretty much the only options available. Yes, HR might leave a voicemail on a particular employee’s phone, but this was still a long way from being a common practice.

With the advent of email and other digital forms of communication, HR could now send a message to everyone in the business at the same time. No more making multiple copies of the memo or walking around trying to talk to each employee.

Texting added another method of reminding team members to turn in their time and eliminated the possibility that someone might not check their email in time.

More recently, push notifications — messages that pop up on the main screen of a user’s smartphone, tablet, laptop, or desktop device — are streamlining the process even more.

Why are timesheet reminders important?

cup of change and plant growing out of it

Timesheet reminders are important because they motivate your team to turn in their work hours for the current pay period.

Without that information, you can’t perform the calculations that keep your business on the road to success.

1) Payroll

The most important calculation you’ll have to conduct with your timesheet reminders is payroll. Even if you disregard the other two on this list, you’re legally obligated to run an accurate and efficient payroll.

Without it, your employees will be unhappy and your business will suffer hefty fines and even substantial legal trouble.

Timesheet reminders are the best way to ensure that your business remains in compliance and that you have all the necessary information to write checks and pay your team.

2) Planning

Timesheet reminders actually help you plan for the future. How so? They bring in the records (the time cards or the timesheets) that indicate the total number of hours each employee worked every day.

In some cases, your team’s time cards may also break down work activity even further to include each employee’s time on task. Those numbers contribute to the planning process.

An analysis of time on task and total time worked helps you answer such questions as:

  • What is your team’s total capacity?
  • How much can you stretch that capacity without overloading them?
  • Are team members overbooked?
  • Has your team’s capacity changed over the past few weeks, months, or years?
  • Does data show that capacity will change in the future?

With that information in hand, you can implement processes that improve efficiency, productivity, spending, and a whole host of other variables — both now and in any new projects your team takes on.

3) Profit

The data you get from team time cards can help you answer all kinds of project and management questions that relate to maximizing profit, including:

  • How much has your business paid employees?
  • How much time have employees spent on specific parts of a given project?
  • Did too many employees spend time on overlapping tasks?
  • Is the time spent on a project producing a profit or a loss?
  • Did your team spend too much time on one activity and not enough time on another activity?
  • Did hiring an outside contractor allow employees to focus on more important tasks?

While profit does depend on a wide variety of factors, when you can control labor spending and adhere to your budget, you’ll be in a better position to manage the other variables involved.

Best timesheet reminders for your business

Person working on timesheets

1) Email

Email was one of the first modern methods for distributing timesheet reminders quickly to a large number of employees.

It’s still a viable way to stay in touch with your team, but some employees don’t check their messages regularly and might miss the reminder you sent.

2) Text message

Text messages are one of the most effective ways to send out timesheet reminders because everyone checks their phone, tablet, or mobile device at least once a day.

The one issue with sending reminders this way is that your business doesn’t always have access to mass-messaging tools. Because of that, sending a text to a large group of employees may take more time and effort than most of the other methods on this list.

3) Time-tracking software

Time-tracking software

Without a doubt, distributing timesheet reminders through your business’s time-tracking software is the most efficient way to reach everyone on your team.

Modern time-tracking software can be set to display a message whenever an employee uses the system (e.g., clocking in, clocking out, and recording time on task).

4) Direct message

If your business uses a team communication app, like Sling, Inch, or Slack, a great way to distribute timesheet reminders is via direct message (DM).

In some cases, you can even set the software to send out reminders automatically on specific dates and at specific times so that everyone is sure to see the information.

5) Notification

As we mentioned at the beginning of this article, notifications (sometimes called push notifications) are another way to distribute timesheet reminders digitally without a lot of extra effort.

Notifications pop up on the main screen of a user’s phone, tablet, laptop, or desktop computer — often accompanied by sound to get their attention — even if the device is locked.

What’s more, those notifications stay there until the user acknowledges that they’ve read them.

6) Voicemail

woman on voicemail

This is the first of several old-school methods for reminding your team to turn in their timesheets.

Whether you leave a voicemail on their company landline phone or their personal mobile phone, it’s still an effective way to get the word out.

7) Poster

The poster timesheet reminder has been around for a long time — mainly because it works well.

If you choose to use this method, take some inspiration from these tip jar ideas and be sure to display copies in places that get a lot of traffic (e.g., at the coffee machine, in the break room, near the time clock).

8) Meme

Timesheet reminders, no doubt, started out as just a few words or lines of text (something like, “Please turn in your timesheet by noon on Tuesday.”).

Eventually, payroll managers got creative and included images with those words. This kicked off the meme trend that seems to be everywhere these days.

9) Announcement

If your business has a public address system, you might consider making an announcement for everyone to hear.

10) Memo

If you’ve got the time and wherewithal to do it, write out a memo and post it somewhere obvious on each employee’s desk.

Eliminate timesheet reminders with Sling

Employees jumping up for a fun picture

Though timesheet reminders may be necessary on some occasions, you don’t want them to be a regular part of your workweek. Tracking down all the delinquent time cards can take up a lot of valuable time that you could dedicate to other, more important, tasks.

If you want to eliminate timesheet reminders altogether and streamline the payroll process, Sling is the answer.

The Sling suite of tools comes with a built-in timeclock, automated reminders, exportable payroll reports, and much more. These features give you access to all of your team’s work hours when you need them and provide complete control over the employee payroll process.

For more free resources to help you manage your business better, organize and schedule your team, and track and calculate labor costs, visit GetSling.com today.

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