Every good product manager has his eyes trained to the P&L sheets, or “Profits and Losses.” These spreadsheets, which establish all direct costs and revenues of the products, show at the end the profits or losses – “Gross margin” – of a product, product line or service provided by a company. This preliminary result is also known as the “contribution margin” and is the first indicator of success or failure of these products.
However, there is a cost line in the spreadsheets that generates considerable controversy among managers, particularly in service businesses, where employees divide their time in service to various clients, projects or products. It is the line that prorates the salary cost of direct labor used during the time invested to perform the tasks.
The difficulty in obtaining accurate values always leads to inferences, often of poor accuracy. This, however, can lead to wrong decisions, since it can make up the results. Some companies implement manual spreadsheets, called “timesheets“. The staff, at the end of a day or work week, must detail the number of hours worked in some projects, products or customers. In some cases, companies use software that allows the inclusion of these hours in electronic forms, but the big problem is to encourage people to fill out these data correctly in a long-term basis. There are quite creative incentives for this purpose, as the distribution of prizes. (See what this agency does when all employees fill out “timesheets” properly: Taxi Post blog)
Since the development of early versions of Runrun.it, we had in mind this problem: How to automate the data from the timesheets? Our goal was to give less work to people who use tasks management systems. We ended up with a solution that takes into account the working hours of the person responsible for developing the task. The developer should just click on the task when it starts its development, Runrun.it calculates the time spent by the entire team, divided by projects and clients. This method has an accuracy far superior to manual methods because it simply eliminates this issue of employees’ life.
Be it for more precise calculation of margins of products and services, to make appropriate pricing or even demonstrating the correct assessment of payrolls, the use of Runrun.it can help your company overcome the problems in the “timesheets”.