Digital vs. Paper Timesheets

How Going Digital Saves Time and Money

Istvan Meszaros  November 23, 2023

Digital Timesheets


Timesheets have become an integral part of today's work environment, allowing us to track our productivity and project progress. With the rise of technology, traditional paper timesheets have been replaced with digital options. In this article, we will compare the benefits of using digital timesheets versus paper ones and why going digital can save time and money.

Digital timesheets offer practicality and efficiency that traditional paper timesheets cannot match. Let's take a closer look at the advantages of using digital timesheets:

  • Real-time tracking of work and availability
  • Better overview of projects and progress
  • Easier management of project estimates
  • Reduced room for human error and exploitation
  • Instant access to data and reports

These benefits make digital timesheets a more reliable and convenient option for businesses of all sizes, including freelancers. But first, let's address the common issues with paper timesheets that make the switch to digital necessary.

Benefits of Digital Timesheets

Digital timesheets offer numerous benefits over traditional paper ones. From ease of use to increased accuracy, here are some key advantages of using digital timesheets:

  • Accessibility: They can be accessed from anywhere with an internet connection, making them ideal for remote or mobile work.
  • Efficiency: They are automated and can be customized to fit the specific needs of a business or user.
  • Integration: They have the potential for integration with other software and systems, such as payroll and project management tools, saving time and increasing efficiency.
  • Real-time tracking: With digital timesheets, time can be tracked and recorded in real-time, providing a more accurate picture of productivity and project progress. This allows for early identification of potential issues and the ability to address them before they become larger problems.

In addition to the above benefits, digital timesheets offer better accuracy and error-checking capabilities than paper timesheets. They also provide comprehensive analytics and reporting, allowing us to track our hours and productivity trends more effectively.

Tracking working hours in PlanArty

Overall, switching to digital timesheets can save time and money, increase accuracy, and improve productivity in today's digital work environment.

Drawbacks of Paper Timesheets

While paper timesheets have been the traditional method of tracking working hours, they have drawbacks. These include the potential for human error, time-consuming manual data entry, and legal issues.

  • Human error: Manual time tracking is prone to errors such as incorrect time entries, miscalculations, and falsification of records. This can lead to inaccurate payroll and disputes with employees.
  • Manual data entry: Manually entering time data into paper timesheets is time-consuming and can significantly decrease productivity. This is especially true for businesses with multiple employees or complex work schedules.
  • Legal issues: Using paper timesheets can also lead to legal issues, such as employee exploitation and wage theft. This can harm a company's reputation and result in costly legal consequences.

Furthermore, paper timesheets do not have the real-time tracking capabilities that digital timesheets offer. This means we might not have an accurate and up-to-date view of our work hours, potentially leading to errors in project management and progress tracking.

Impact on Our Productivity

The use of timesheets, whether digital or paper, can significantly impact our productivity. However, digital timesheets have proven more efficient and accurate, leading to increased productivity for many businesses. Here are some key advantages of using digital timesheets for employee productivity:

  1. More accurate time tracking: With digital timesheets, we can easily track our time in real-time, eliminating the potential for errors and inaccuracies that often occur with manual time tracking methods.
  2. Improved time management: Digital timesheets offer features such as task-based tracking and automated reminders, making it easier to manage our time effectively. This leads to better time management and improved productivity in completing tasks and meeting deadlines.
  3. Flexibility and accessibility: Digital timesheets can be accessed from anywhere, allowing us to more easily track our time and tasks, even while working remotely or with flexible schedules. This flexibility leads to better work-life balance and higher productivity.
  4. Enhanced performance: With digital timesheets, we can easily track our performance based on accurate time records. This can help us identify areas for improvement and motivate us to stay on track with our tasks and projects.

In contrast, paper timesheets might result in inaccuracies and time theft, reducing productivity. The manual data entry process can be time-consuming and lead to delays in invoicing, affecting our motivation and work productivity.

Overall, using digital timesheets can significantly enhance our productivity, leading to better business operations and, ultimately, increased revenue. It is a valuable tool for us to stay competitive in today's fast-paced work environment.

Hourly Invoicing with Digital Timesheets

Hourly invoicing can be a complex and time-consuming task, especially if you have multiple clients and projects to manage. However, using a digital timesheet can simplify the process and make it more efficient.

With a digital timesheet, you can easily track your working hours, associate them with specific contracts or projects, and generate accurate invoices based on the hours worked. This not only saves you time but also ensures that you are accurately billing your clients.

Your billable hours at a glance: You can easily see an overview of all your hours and billable amounts grouped by clients and/or projects.

In PlanaArty’s detailed billable list, you can filter your billable hours after a client, select them all, and generate your invoice with one click. You can even append the detailed timelist as an addendum to your invoice. This will ensure transparency with your client and facilitate a quicker payment process.

Communication and Collaboration

The use of digital timesheets can greatly enhance communication and collaboration within a company. With real-time tracking capabilities, team members can easily see the progress of projects and adjust their workflow accordingly. This promotes better teamwork and improves project efficiency.

Digital timesheets also provide a centralized platform for communication between employees and employers. This allows for easier access to employee information and facilitates communication about work hours, time estimates, and any issues that might arise. This level of transparency and real-time communication can improve trust and promote a stronger working relationship between employees and employers.

In addition, digital timesheets allow for easier collaboration among team members, especially in remote or flexible work arrangements. With the ability to track time and project progress in real-time, teams can work together more efficiently and effectively. This can lead to better project outcomes and a competitive advantage for the company.

Using digital timesheets can significantly enhance communication and collaboration within a company, resulting in improved teamwork, project management, and overall productivity.


Digital timesheets provide ease of use, accuracy, and accessibility, making them a practical and efficient solution for tracking our hours. Thereby, they have a positive impact on our productivity and communication with our employers or clients.

Paper timesheets have several drawbacks, including potential human errors, time-consuming data entry, and legal issues. They can also make our hourly-based invoicing a real pain at the end of the month when we must manually count each billable hour.

When considering the needs and goals of our business, it is clear that digital timesheets offer a competitive advantage in today's online work environment. With features such as real-time tracking and remote access, digital timesheets can save time and money, contributing to the success of our business operations.

Istvan Meszaros

Founder at PlanArty

Entrepreneur with a BS degree in Computer Science.
Istvan is passionate about time management and effectiveness in business and personal life.