This is part one of a three part series. Tracking, paying for, and invoicing time in QuickBooks is a big topic. Too big for one post. The first post will cover entering time transactions in QuickBooks, the second will address how to invoice or charge for that time. The third will focus on paying employees or vendors for performing the work.
Entering Time Transactions
If your business invoices customers for time, QuickBooks has tools that will streamline this process and save hours. These tools work whether the time for which you invoice is based on employee hours, contractor hours, or both.
Be sure time tracking is enabled in Preferences. Navigate to Preferences | Time & Expenses | Company Preferences. Set the question, “Do you track time?” to Yes.
This setting will cause an icon, “Enter Time’, to show on the Home Page. The icon gives two choices: Use Weekly Time Sheet, or Time/Enter Single Activity. The Weekly Timesheet is more commonly used.
The first field needing user input is the Name field near the top of the form. In the screenshot, we used Gregg Schneider, an employee. Vendors can also be used for time tracking purposes.
Dates are set in the field labeled “Week of”. Several columns make up the body of the form.
The first column gives a place to specify what customer or job will be invoiced for this time. The service item is the service that was performed for the customer. It is a Service type item from the QuickBooks Item list.
Payroll Item is a column since Gregg is an employee. Is it Regular Time or Overtime? This column would not be visible for a vendor.
The hours worked can be entered on the days of the week the service was performed.
The circled area at the right side of the form is a checkbox labeled Billable. Check this checkbox (it may be checked by default depending on the Preference setting) to make this time available to invoice the customer.
The above screen shot shows the Single Activity Timer. This window creates basically the same transaction in QuickBooks, but one activity at a time. Note that in the Single Activity Timer window, a stop watch feature is built in to track time as you work.
That’s all there is to entering time and marking it to be used for invoicing. The invoicing process will be covered in part 2.