Engineers undertake the biggest projects in modern times. Don’t be caught using a spreadsheet keeping track of your time. Sure, spreadsheets are nice; they calculate and organize every kind of engineering data imaginable. But we have to draw the line when it comes to entering engineering hours against project. They just don’t work. Here’s why:
- When you track engineering time in a spreadsheet, it’s usually only one person. That person becomes a bottleneck. They get weary of the job and make mistakes. There are time tracking apps for this work, which decentralize and collect time where and when it actually occurs. That makes the hours more accurate and more granular
- When that one person enters employ hours, they have to find a spot to put them. If there isn’t an appropriate task for the work, they make things up. Why not let the actual employees create their own tasks and enter the correct hours for them. Making stuff up never helped anyone.
- Spreadsheets have some pretty cool graphs. But they can’t run complex routines that build the kinds of graphs you need in engineering project management. Instead, you just get summations and statistics. Those are helpful, but maybe not exactly what you’re looking for.