5 Ways to Get Technicians to Track Time Accurately

February 10, 2017  By Steve Alexander
Getting technicians to track their time can be an ongoing battle. Even though everyone understands why it’s critical, when it comes to making it happen things get sloppy.  The only way to keep growing and ensure you’re meeting and exceeding customer expectations is  to make sure contracts are being fulfilled on time and that technicians are allocated the correct amount of hours to complete projects. No matter the size of your team, providing the right guidance and an easy-to-use system to successfully track time and productivity can make a world of difference with your service delivery goals. 

Here are five tips for getting your technicians to track everything.

1. Change the focus.  A PSA, like Autotask, lets you accurately track and manage your resources and get projects queued up and completed on time and on spec. As leaders, we are constantly challenged to get the most out of our invaluable tools so we focus on tracking time. After all, time is money and our PSA is designed to track it. While this is true, tracking time sometimes makes us feel like we are punching a clock on a factory floor. So why not change the focus from punching a clock to ensuring we are quickly and accurately keeping colleagues and customers informed of the status of open tasks? Isn’t this what is really important? By doing so, your customer experience will improve, your staff will feel better about what they are doing and thanks to the magic of applications like Autotask, your time will be tracked and you will be able to tell where the profits are coming from.

2. Help staff set goals. Work closely with your team to set realistic, manageable goals that are going to meet your client’s expectations. If your team doesn’t know what needs their time and attention, it’s up to you to help them understand how to successfully allocate and prioritize their time so they’re maximizing productivity while delighting your clients. 

3. Don’t get caught in the ‘I am so busy, where do I start?’ madness. There are two kinds of busy: drinking from a fire hose because you haven’t made task prioritization a company imperative and a healthy, manageable backlog of projects that are queued up with the right technician assigned and the right amount of time allotted to deliver what you’ve promised.  What kind do you think works best for your business? Psst… it’s not the first kind. 

4. Reward customer satisfaction. When your customers are happy, your business hums along. You build long-term relationships, you become indispensable and you have the time to think strategically about how to help your clients benefit from innovative technology solutions that you can recommend. It’s a no-brainer to reward those technicians that are making that possible by responding to client needs quickly. 

5. Lead, don’t tell. Running around telling your staff that time tracking is a must and we HAVE to do it and then not doing it yourself or letting it fall by the wayside when things get too busy is not going to help your business long-term. Be the one leading the charge, show your technicians how you’re keeping track of your time and productivity and give them something to aspire to and emulate.
Steve Alexander
Steve Alexander is owner of MSP-Ignite and has 25 years of experience managing, building and eventually selling two regional Managed Services Providers. He has worked with hundreds of MSPs and has been involved in over a dozen mergers and acquisitions. He is a subject matter expert for CompTIA’s Managed Services Trust Mark, an Advisor to their Managed Services Community and has served on several regional and national advisory boards. He facilitates several industry peer groups.

Steve is one of the original Autotask MVPs and has successfully implemented and trained hundreds of Autotask users as a certified consulting partner.  

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