How to Do A Time Audit

Learn how you spend your time with a time audit!

There are only 24 hours in a day and you definitely shouldn’t be spending all of those hours working. How do you manage your time and make sure you are using every minute of your business hours efficiently? A time audit!

A time audit is a valuable tool to measure productivity. During the time audit process, you will be able to see where you and your employees are spending too much time. It will also show where you need to be directing more energy.

Have you ever worked a full day and felt like you didn’t accomplish any one task in full? By conducting a time audit you be able to see how often you are starting tasks and not finishing them. The time audit process will also help paint a clearer picture about tasks that can be delegated to other members of your staff or outsourced to virtual assistant services like E-Typist.

This step-by-step process shows you how to conduct a simple time audit.

1. Find a timer that you can use to set for a specific interval of time. This can be the timer on your phone or through a computer program.

2. Set the timer for intervals of 60, 30 or 15 minutes. Do not start on the hour as you are more likely to be at natural stopping points on the hour. If you start your first timer at 9:43, you would have the next one go off at 10:43 if you did intervals of 60 minutes.

3. Each time the timer goes off, jot down what you are doing at that moment. This running tally can be written on paper or be recorded on a digital log. Keep it somewhere that’s easy to access so you don’t spend too much time writing.

4. Repeat this process on different days through the week. If you do it on a Monday when you tend to have more phone calls and emails to make, also make sure you do it on a Thursday when you have more meetings.

5. When you have gathered data from a few different days across a few different weeks, analyze the results. You can do this by putting each task into a spreadsheet. Assign each task an importance ranking from 1 being not important at all to 5 being absolutely necessary. This will force you to assign value to how you are spending your time.

6. Next, create a second column to rank how well that task contributes to your income from 1 being very little to 5 being significantly. For example, folding leaflets vs. signing a new client. While they are interrelated, you can’t do them simultaneously. So, which one does the most for your bottom-line in that moment?

7. Finally, create a final column to list which tasks are important but that you can delegate out to someone else at your team.

It’s time to apply time audit results to your business operations.

Look at the number rankings that you gave your time to. Did you have a lot of 1’s? What is stopping you from delegating out certain tasks?

Once you analyze the numbers, you are in good shape if you are seeing 75% of your time spent on necessary tasks. Take a look at the low tasks and ask yourself if you are really the person in your organization that needs to be doing them. For the tasks that you can delegate, keep in mind the income ranking you assigned. For your lowest ranked tasks, it may actually be more profitable to outsource than to use the time and energy of your employees. For example, having your leading sales employee folding the leaflets for 30 minutes vs. adding five bucks to your printing order.

E-Typist is available to take on your transcription now! We also offer virtual assistant services to help you  manage your calendars, filings and more to eliminate those tasks that eat up your productive hours. All of those tasks you labeled necessary but that you also marked as available to outsource, that’s where we come in! With our reasonable pricing, you’ll see that this outsourcing pays for itself and gives you the time to direct your energy towards tasks only you can complete.

To learn how E-Typist can help you manage your productivity better, visit our contact us page or call (330) 474-7079.