Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Are timesheets giving you a headache? 

Do you find yourself questioning their purpose, accuracy, or even legality?

Well, we’re here to put all your doubts to rest! 

Whether you’re an employer struggling to manage time tracking or an employee unsure about the ins and outs of timesheets, this blog post has got you covered. 

We’ve gathered the most frequently asked questions on this topic and thoroughly answered each one so that timesheets will no longer be a daunting mystery.  

Let’s get started with the sets of questions from an employee perspective 

What Is A Timesheet?

Visible Timesheets

A timesheet is a document or tool used to track and record the amount of time an individual or employee spends on various: 

  • Tasks
  • Projects
  • Activities

It serves as a record of the hours worked, typically organized in a tabular format with columns representing different categories such as:

  • Date
  • Project/task
  • Start time & end time
  • Total hours worked

What Should Be Included In A Timesheet?

A comprehensive timesheet should include the following information:

  • Date: The specific date for which the time is being recorded.
  • Project/Task: The name or identifier of the project or task being worked on.
  • Start Time: The time when the work or task began.
  • End Time: The time when the work or task was completed.
  • Breaks: Any breaks taken during the work period.
  • Total Hours: The calculated total hours spent on the project or task.
  • Comments/Notes: Optional section to include additional details or any relevant notes.

What Are The Advantages Of Timesheets?


Using timesheets offers several advantages for both employers and employees:

  1. Time Tracking: Timesheets provide an accurate record of the time spent on different activities, allowing individuals or organizations to monitor and analyze how time is being utilized.
  2. Project Management: Timesheets assist in tracking project progress, estimating future work, and identifying potential bottlenecks or areas for improvement.
  3. Resource Allocation: By reviewing timesheets, managers can allocate resources effectively, ensuring that workloads are distributed appropriately and that projects are adequately staffed.
  4. Billing and Payroll: Timesheets serve as a basis for billing clients or customers based on the time spent on their projects. They are also used to calculate employee payroll and ensure accurate compensation.
  5. Performance Evaluation: Timesheets provide data to assess individual and team productivity, evaluate performance, and identify areas where productivity can be enhanced.

How Do I Accurately Record My Working Hours On A Timesheet?

To accurately record your working hours on a timesheet, follow these steps:

    • Start by noting the date and your name or employee ID on the timesheet.
    • Begin recording the time you start and finish work each day, specifying the hours and minutes.
    • Include any breaks or lunchtime you take during your working hours.
    • If you work on different tasks or projects throughout the day, make sure to allocate the time spent on each task separately.
  • Ensure that you record your hours accurately, rounding to the nearest quarter or tenth of an hour as specified by your employer.
  • Double-check your entries before submitting the timesheet to avoid any mistakes or discrepancies.

Can I Track My Time On Different Projects Or Tasks Using A Timesheet?


Yes, you can track your time on different projects or tasks using a timesheet. Here’s how:

  • Divide your timesheet into sections or columns, assigning each column to a specific project or task.
  • Record the start and end times for each project or task separately within the designated columns.
  • If you switch between projects or tasks during the day, make sure to note the transition times accurately.
  • Sum up the hours spent on each project or task and provide a total for each column.
  • If your employer requires further details, such as specific activities or notes for each project, make sure to include those as well.

What Should I Do If I Forget To Record My Time On A Timesheet?

View Timesheet

Forgetting to record your time on a timesheet can happen, but here are some steps you can take to rectify the situation:

  • As soon as you realize the omission, try to recall the approximate time you started and finished work or the specific hours you missed.
  • If possible, consult any available references such as emails, calendar entries, or work logs that may help you reconstruct the missing time.
  • Speak to your supervisor or HR department & explain the situation, providing them with accurate details of the missed time.
  • In some cases, you may need to fill out a separate form or add an addendum to your timesheet to document the missed time accurately.
  • Remember to be proactive in preventing future omissions by setting reminders or using time tracking tools to ensure accurate time recording.

How Often Should I Submit My Timesheet To My Supervisor Or Hr Department?

The frequency of timesheet submissions may vary depending on your company’s policies and pay periods. 

Generally, it is advisable to submit your timesheet regularly, such as weekly or bi-weekly. 

Some companies may have specific deadlines or timeframes for timesheet submissions. 

Ensure to familiarize yourself with your organization’s guidelines and submit your timesheet promptly to ensure timely and accurate processing of your work hours.

Can I Use A Mobile App To Fill Out My Timesheet On The Go?

iOS-track mobile

Yes, using a mobile app to fill out your timesheet on the go can be a convenient option. 

Many time tracking applications offer mobile versions that allow you to record your working hours using your smartphone or tablet. 

These apps often provide features like timers, project/task allocation, and seamless synchronization with web-based timesheet systems. 

By using a mobile app, you can easily track your time regardless of your location, making it especially beneficial for remote work or when you’re frequently on the move.

Take control of your time management.

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How Do I Handle Overtime Hours On A Timesheet?

Handling overtime hours on a timesheet requires careful documentation and adherence to your company’s policies. Here’s how you can handle overtime hours:

  • Identify the hours that qualify as overtime based on your company’s guidelines. You can use time tracking software to accurately calculate overtime hours.
  • Make sure to label those hours as “overtime” in your timesheet or other relevant records.
  • Specify the start and end times of your overtime period, along with the total number of overtime hours worked.
  •  If your company has specific codes or categories for overtime, ensure you use the appropriate designation on the timesheet.
  • Some companies may require prior approval for overtime hours, so make sure to follow the necessary procedures to obtain approval.
  •  Double-check your overtime calculations to ensure accuracy before submitting the timesheet.

Can I Include Non-Work-Related Activities On My Timesheet?

Generally, timesheets are meant to track work-related activities and the hours spent on specific projects or tasks. 

Therefore, it is typically not appropriate to include non-work-related activities on your timesheet. 

However, if there are specific instances where non-work-related activities are directly related to your job or approved by your employer such as:

  • Training sessions
  • Company events

You should consult with your supervisor or HR department to determine the appropriate way to record such activities on your timesheet.

How Can I Track And Record Breaks Or Lunchtime On My Timesheet?

Tracking and recording breaks or lunchtime on your timesheet helps ensure accurate reporting of your working hours. Here’s how you can do it:

  • Start by determining the duration of your breaks or lunchtime, as per your company’s policies or local labor laws.
  • Note the start and end times of each break or lunch period on your timesheet.
  • Some timesheets have specific columns or sections dedicated to breaks, while others may require you to subtract break time from your total working hours.
  • If you take multiple shorter breaks throughout the day, you can record them individually or summarize them as one block of break time.
  • Be consistent in how you document breaks or lunchtime on your timesheet to ensure clarity and accuracy.

What Information Should I Include In The Comments Section Of A Timesheet?

The comments section of a timesheet provides an opportunity to provide additional context or details about specific entries. 

Here are some examples of information you might include in the comments section:

  • The explanation for any deviations or variances in your working hours or time entries.
  • Clarification regarding tasks or projects worked on during specific periods.
  • Notes on any challenges or issues encountered during the reported hours.
  • Documentation of any approvals received, such as overtime or time off requests.
  • Relevant information about specific tasks, milestones, or accomplishments achieved during the reported hours.
  • Communication regarding any changes or corrections made to previous entries on the timesheet.

Can I Edit My Timesheet After It Has Been Submitted?


In some cases, if your company’s timesheet system allows for manual editing with automatic tracking, you may be able to edit your timesheet after it has been submitted. 

However, it’s important to follow your company’s specific policies and procedures regarding timesheet edits. 

Here are the general steps to handle timesheet edits:

  • Notify your supervisor or HR department immediately about the error or need for modification in your timesheet.
  • Provide a clear explanation of the specific changes or corrections required.
  • If your company allows self-editing, access the timesheet system and follow the designated process for making edits.
  • Ensure that any changes are accurately documented and supported by relevant information or justifications.
  • If there are specific deadlines or approval processes for timesheet edits, make sure to comply with those guidelines.

How Should I Handle Time Off Or Vacation Days On A Timesheet?

When handling time off or vacation days on a timesheet, you need to differentiate those days from regular working days. Here’s how you can handle them:

  • Mark the dates: Indicate the start and end dates of your time off or vacation period on the timesheet. This helps to establish the duration of your absence.
  • Use a separate category: Create a specific category or section on the timesheet to record time off or vacation days. Label it as “Time Off,” “Vacation,” or something similar.
  • Specify the type of time off: If your company has different types of time off, such as:


Sick leave

Personal days

Specify the type of time off you are taking for each entry. This helps to maintain accurate records for HR or payroll purposes.

  • Fill in the hours: Instead of recording your regular working hours, fill in the total number of hours you would typically work in a day as the hours taken for time off. 

For example, if you normally work 8 hours a day, enter “8” for each day of time off or vacation.

  • Submit the timesheet: Once you have completed your time off or vacation, submit your timesheet as per your company’s procedures and deadlines. Ensure that the time off or vacation days are documented and accounted for.

Can I Submit My Timesheet Electronically?


Yes, many organizations now use electronic timesheet systems that allow employees to submit their timesheets electronically. 

This eliminates the need for paper-based timesheets and makes the process more efficient. Check with your employer to see if they have an electronic timesheet system in place.

Can I Submit My Timesheet Before The End Of The Pay Period?

The submission deadline for timesheets may vary depending on your organization’s policies. 

Some companies require timesheets to be submitted by a specific date and time at the end of the pay period, while others may allow for early submission. 

It’s best to adhere to your company’s guidelines and submit your timesheet within the designated timeframe.

What If I Have Overlapping Or Conflicting Work Hours On My Timesheet?

If you have overlapping or conflicting work hours on your timesheet, it’s important to review your entries and ensure accuracy. 

Double-check the start and end times for each task or project, and make any necessary adjustments to resolve the conflicts. 

If you are unsure how to proceed, consult your supervisor or HR department for guidance on resolving the overlapping or conflicting hours.

How Should I Track And Record Time Spent Working Remotely On A Timesheet? 


workstatus ws

Workstatus offers excellent features for tracking and recording time spent working remotely. 

To effectively track and record remote work time on a timesheet using Workstatus, follow these steps:

  • Install the Workstatus desktop or mobile app on your device.
  • Log in to the app using your Workstatus account credentials.
  • Start the timer when you begin your remote work session.
  • Workstatus’s automatic time-tracking feature will record the duration of your work session accurately.
  • If you switch between tasks or projects, use Workstatus’s activity tracking to automatically assign the appropriate labels or categories to your time entries.
  • Once you have completed your remote work session, stop the timer to finalize the recorded time.
  • Workstatus also allows you to manually adjust and edit your time entries if needed.
  • At the end of the pay period or as per your company’s guidelines, review your recorded time on Workstatus and transfer the relevant information to your timesheet.

How Should I Communicate The Importance Of Accurate Timesheet Submission To My Employees?

To communicate the importance of accurate timesheet submission to your employees, consider the following approaches:

  • Clearly articulate the purpose and significance of timesheets in ensuring: 
  • Accurate payroll processing
  • Project tracking
  • Compliance with labor regulations
  • Emphasize the impact of accurate timesheets on the overall success of the organization, including the ability to make informed business decisions based on reliable data.
  • Provide clear instructions and guidelines on how to accurately complete timesheets, including the:
  • Required information
  • Formats
  • Any specific codes or categories to be used
  • Explain any potential consequences of inaccurate or delayed timesheet submissions, such as: 
  • Delays in payroll processing 
  • Disruptions in project timelines
  • Offer training or workshops to educate employees on the proper use of timesheets and address any questions or concerns they may have.

How Often Should I Review And Approve Employee Timesheets?

time reports

The frequency of reviewing and approving employee timesheets can vary depending on the nature of your business and company policies. 

However, a regular schedule for reviewing and approving timesheets is recommended. 

Consider the following options:

WS weekly reports

  • Weekly review: Review and approve timesheets every week, allowing for timely payroll processing and addressing any discrepancies promptly.
  • Bi-weekly or semi-monthly review: Conduct reviews and approvals every two weeks or twice a month, aligning with your pay periods.
  • Monthly review: Review and approve timesheets every month, suitable for businesses with longer project cycles or fewer employees.

Set specific deadlines for timesheet submission and communicate them clearly to employees to ensure timely reviews and approvals.

What Should I Do If An Employee Fails To Submit Their Timesheet On Time?

If an employee fails to submit their timesheet on time, follow these steps to address the situation effectively:

  • Reach out to the employee promptly and remind them of the timesheet submission deadline.
  • Inquire about any challenges or issues that may have led to the delay in timesheet submission, offering support or guidance if needed.
  • Communicate the importance of timely timesheet submissions and the impact they may have on payroll processing and project tracking.
  • Encourage the employee to submit their timesheet as soon as possible, emphasizing the need for accuracy in their time reporting.
  • If there is a valid reason for the delay, such as unforeseen circumstances, consider providing a reasonable extension for timesheet submission.

If repeated delays occur, address the issue through performance management or company policies, ensuring employees understand the consequences of consistent non-compliance.

How Can I Handle Discrepancies Or Conflicts In Reported Hours On A Timesheet?

  • Investigate the issue: When you come across discrepancies or conflicts in reported hours, gather all relevant information and details related to the situation. This may include: 
  • Reviewing project schedules
  • Attendance records
  • Any supporting documentation.
  • Communicate with the employee: Engage in a conversation with the employee to understand their perspective and gather additional information. Seek clarification on any inconsistencies and discuss the reasons behind the reported hours.
  • Document the discussion: Maintain a record of the conversation and any agreements reached during the discussion. Document any supporting evidence or explanations provided by the employee.
  • Conduct a thorough review: Compare the reported hours with other relevant records, such as project timelines or work assignments, to determine the accuracy of the reported hours.
  • Resolve the conflict: If there are genuine errors or misunderstandings, work with the employee to rectify the reported hours. 

If there is evidence of intentional misreporting, address the situation through appropriate channels, such as HR or disciplinary processes, following your company’s policies and procedures.

Can I Set Reminders Or Deadlines For Employees To Submit Their Timesheets?

Automatic Reminders

Yes, you can set reminders or deadlines for employees to submit their timesheets. 

  • Establishing reminders or deadlines helps ensure timely and consistent submission of timesheets, streamlining payroll processes and promoting accountability. 
  • You can utilize various methods to set reminders, such as: 
  • Automated email notifications
  • Calendar alerts
  • Notifications through time tracking software
  • Clearly communicate the expectations and deadlines to employees, emphasizing the importance of adhering to the set timeline. 
  • Providing necessary support or guidance can help employees meet deadlines effectively. 

How Should I Handle Overtime Hours Or Time Off Requests On An Employee’s Timesheet Being An Employer? 

As an employer, handling overtime hours and time off requests on an employee’s timesheet requires clear guidelines and processes. 

Here are some key points to consider:

Overtime Hours:

  • Comply with labor laws and company policies regarding overtime compensation.
  • Communicate guidelines for reporting and approving overtime hours.
  • Ensure accurate recording and separate tracking of overtime hours.
  • Require necessary documentation and supervisor approvals for overtime claims.

Time Off Requests:

  • Establish a clear process for employees to submit time off requests.
  • Specify required information such as dates, type of leave, and supporting documentation.
  • Review and promptly approve time off requests based on company policies.
  • Adjust the employee’s timesheet to reflect the time off taken.


  • Maintain accurate records of overtime hours and time off requests.
  • Keep track of approved time off and adjustments made to the employee’s timesheet.
  • Ensure compliance with record-keeping requirements for overtime and time off.

Employee Support:

  • Offer guidance and support to employees on how to correctly report overtime hours.
  • Provide resources or training on time off policies and procedures.
  • Address any questions or concerns employees may have regarding overtime or time off.

What Measures Can I Take To Ensure The Confidentiality And Security Of Timesheet Data?

  • Access controls: Implement strict access controls to limit access to timesheet data only to authorized personnel. Use secure:
  • Login credentials
  • Unique usernames
  • Strong passwords for timesheet systems
  • Data encryption: Utilize encryption techniques to protect timesheet data both during transmission and storage. 
  • Secure storage: Store timesheet data in secure and controlled environments, whether it’s in physical or digital form. Use secure servers or cloud storage solutions with appropriate security measures in place.
  • User permissions: Assign user permissions and roles based on job responsibilities. 
  • Regular backups and disaster recovery: Implement regular backup procedures to ensure data availability and integrity.

How Should I Handle Changes Or Edits Requested By An Employee After Timesheet Submission?

  • Review the request: Evaluate the nature and reasons behind the changes or edits requested by the employee. Verify the legitimacy of the request and ensure it aligns with company policies.
  • Establish a policy: Have a clear policy in place that outlines the process for handling changes or edits to timesheets after submission. 
  • Maintain an audit trail: Keep a record of any changes made to timesheets, including:
  • Who made the changes?
  • The date and time of the modifications
  • The reason for the adjustments

This helps maintain transparency and accountability.

  • Communicate the outcome: Notify the employee of the decision regarding their requested changes or edits. If approved, ensure the updated timesheet is properly processed and documented.

Can I Use Timesheet Data For Project Costing Or Client Billing Purposes?

WS client billing


Yes, timesheet data can be used for project costing or client billing purposes.

By tracking the hours spent on specific projects or tasks, timesheet data provides valuable insights for project management and cost calculations. It helps to:

  • Determine resource allocation
  • Measure project profitability
  • Generate accurate client invoices

Can Employers Use Timesheet Data For Performance Evaluation Purposes?

time reports

Yes, employers can use timesheet data for performance evaluation purposes.

Timesheets provide valuable insights into an employee’s productivity, time management skills, and adherence to schedules.

However, it is important to consider additional factors beyond timesheet data, such as:

  • The quality of work
  • Project outcomes
  • Any qualitative feedback from managers or colleagues, while evaluating employee performance.

Can I automate the timesheet approval process?

Yes, you can automate the timesheet approval process using timesheet management software or other digital tools.

These tools allow employees to submit their timesheets electronically, which can then be reviewed and approved by supervisors or HR personnel

Automation reduces manual effort, minimizes errors, and improves efficiency in the approval workflow.

What Tools Or Software Can I Use To Streamline The Timesheet Approval Process?

There are several tools and software options available to streamline the timesheet approval process. Consider the following:

  • Time tracking software:

Resource Management members

Utilize dedicated time tracking software that allows employees to easily record and submit their timesheets. Such software often includes features like:

Automatic time capture

Task categorization

Reminders for submission

  • Project management tools:


Many project management tools offer built-in timesheet functionality that integrates with project tasks and schedules. This allows for seamless tracking of hours and streamlines the approval process.

  • Collaboration platforms: Utilize collaboration platforms that include timesheet features. These platforms often provide centralized access for employees, supervisors, and HR personnel to review and approve timesheets.
  • Mobile apps: 

iOS-track mobile

Utilize mobile apps that enable employees to fill out and submit timesheets on the go. Mobile apps provide convenience and flexibility, especially for remote or mobile workers.

  • Workflow automation tools: Implement workflow automation tools that streamline the timesheet approval process.

These tools automate notifications, reminders, and routing of timesheets for review and approval, reducing manual effort and improving efficiency.

Introducing Workstatus The One-Stop Solution To Manage All Timesheets:

workstatus ws

Workstatus is a fully automated platform that can help employers and employees streamline the timesheet approval process.

Employers can issue work items to their teams or individuals in seconds, assign tasks with due dates and get real-time updates on project progress.

Employees have full control over their timesheets, which can easily be filled out, tracked, edited, and submitted without leaving their desks.

Workstatus also provides a centralized platform for HR departments to review and approve timesheets quickly and accurately.

With its cloud-based technology, Workstatus ensures secure data protection for up to years of records.

Next Step

In conclusion, this blog has addressed 30 common questions about timesheets, providing valuable insights and clarification on various aspects.

Whether you were wondering about the importance of timesheets, how to fill them out accurately, or how to handle specific situations, we hope this resource has helped resolve your queries.

If you’re looking for a comprehensive solution to simplify your timesheet management and enhance productivity, we recommend checking out Workstatus.

With its user-friendly interface, robust features, and seamless integration, Workstatus can streamline your time-tracking processes and empower your team to work more efficiently.


Q: Are timesheets required by law?

Timesheet requirements can vary by jurisdiction and industry. It’s important to consult with local labor laws or regulations and any applicable employment contracts to determine if timesheets are legally required in your specific situation.

Q: Can timesheets be used for tracking attendance?

Timesheets can be used to track attendance if they include the start and end times of the workday.

However, if the primary purpose of tracking attendance is for payroll or HR purposes, separate attendance records may be used in addition to timesheets.

Q: How should I handle rounding of time entries on a timesheet?

Rounding rules for time entries on timesheets may vary by employer.

Some organizations may have specific rounding policies in place e.g. rounding to the nearest quarter or tenth of an hour, while others may require exact time entries.

It’s essential to follow your employer’s guidelines for rounding time entries.