Repost from Medium
Proper time tracking and billing is a very important task for many small businesses in services sector; especially for consulting, accounting or law firms. They need to track hours spent on each client’s project and bill accordingly. Any mistake can lead to loss of revenues or overcharging clients. Many companies purchase a software product to handle this process. Others use simple tools like Microsoft Excel to track data. In this tutorial, we will walk you through creating a complete web based application for time tracking and billing. An application of this size takes only a few minutes to become online.
Here is a billing tracking spreadsheet made with MS Excel. This form is sent to employees to be filled out, in order to determine the billing details sent to the customers. Let’s assume that you have the hourly rates of your employees and the list of your clients in the same document as the billing form but of course, this data is to be left outside the area to be displayed. The form captures data like employee name, client name, date, description of the work, and number of hours. It calculates billable charges based on employee’s rate as shown in table (K5:L9).
We’ll use SpreadsheetWEB to convert this form into a web application; removing the need of manual updates, creating a secure environment to share the data with enhanced reporting capabilities. First, run the SpreadsheetWEB add-in that was designed for MS Excel. Visit https://www.spreadsheetweb.com/get-started/ to sign up and install the SpreadsheetWEB add-in.
Apply the conversion; selecting the input cells, buttons of your choice and the cells for reporting. SpreadsheetWEB offers various form control options. Start off by selecting the area you want to show. Input cells need to be specified too, but SpreadsheetWEB has tools to make this process a breeze.
Next, add buttons with various features. Buttons introduce extended capabilities to the application. These features include; tab controls, reporting specifications, automated emails and exporting options. In this application, we enable Submit functionality to save user entered data in a database.
You can also select which data to save in the database. In this application, we wanted to save the employee name, client, date, description of the job, hours and total cost to be billed.
In the end, simply enter your username and password to upload the workbook to SpreadsheetWEB. Once uploaded, converted application will show as below:
Uploaded application will be added to the Applications list on the Control Panel. Each employee can access the application securely using their username/password and can submit their hours. It can be accessed from any device with internet connection. You can access it from your laptop, tablet or even smart phone.
Each user can also access their time sheets and make necessary corrections through a web interface. Now that the application is ready and the data is flowing, you might feel a bit overwhelmed. Best way to make sense of data is to visualize it. SpreadsheetWEB features a dashboard to be decorated with charts and graphs, so that you can analyze the surge of data. To add a dashboard for reporting, go to “Add Report”. In the dashboard; add charts, filters, graphs and other visualizations to your liking.
If you want to create your own application, you can download this spreadsheet and upload it to your own SpreadsheetWEB account.