Tracking the users of time tracking

 – and how they can all benefit from adding a time tracker app to their Jira

wide cover image for timetracker user types blog post

Time tracking is a fundamental feature of all versions of Jira, yet it is also one of the most underdeveloped functions of it too. As witnessed by the popularity of the time tracking category of the Marketplace and a constant barrage of questions on the community related to time tracking, (some of which could be simply answered by “you’re gonna need a time tracker app”), this topic is very much in demand.

We are EverIT, one of these vendors with a Timetracker app, and we want to share some interesting findings with you we made based on studying our user base: we’ll show you the typical Jira users who use or should be using a dedicated time tracker tool.

1. The managers

Managers are the number one user type who seek and see the benefits of a time tracker app, given their need to see their team’s accurate and easy-to-understand reports and timesheets. And also they might be logging their own work, which they want to do as painlessly as possible. They are most likely to have lots of meetings as well, usually happening at fixed, and repeating times of the week, so the ability to create duplicate worklogs saves them quite a lot of time. We also found them to be the happiest when a time tracker plugin also offers a calendar integration, creating worklogs from their calendar items.

2. The Expeditious

This adverb describes someone who does things very quickly and efficiently. In the case of a time tracker, we mean a Jira user who always creates a worklog immediately after finishing a task. For them, the UX/UI of the time tracking interface is of the essence, be it a window inside the Jira Issue or inside a time tracker app they keep open in a separate tab throughout the day. Do it, log it, and on to the next task.

3. The Minuteman

Very similar to the Expeditious, they have a second major trait that guarantees a spot for them in this list: They are not only accurate in the sense of logging their work immediately, but they are also methodical in their time logs portraying the real-time spent on a task, right down to the minute, resulting in 5 or 15-minute worklogs, instead of the 30 minutes or hourly rounded up worklogs generally recommended by time tracking companies.

4. The Last-Minute person

Not as eager as the Expeditious, they tend to be more relaxed regarding their worklogs. Maybe they are busy all the time, perhaps they just want to wait until a certain amount of worklogs to create accumulate, but their work logging habits usually follow a rhythm not based on the workflows, but on the flow of time: they will create their worklogs at the end of a day, at the end of the week, or just before the end of their billing period, depending on their circumstances – and their manager’s insistence. For them, having a clear overview of their days and weeks is essential, which can be covered by a calendar view, or a timeline view, and knowing which gaps they need to fill with their time logs.

5. The Duration trackers

We found there are organizations (or teams inside organizations, like Customer Services departments) where only certain aspects of time tracking are used. Here, managers are not really interested in when a task started – or sometimes the Issue of a certain task, only the type of work they did and the durations of dealing with it. That is why most time trackers, our Timetracker included, offer the option to only track durations for worklogs.

6. The Notepad folks

The final category is a bit of a mix, you could even say it’s a sub-category of the previous group. In our experience, there are those in every company who, no matter which Saas tool the company uses, will always keep their personal note-making habits as well. What they work on and when recorded in their own style and format – but then they’ll have to do it again for the company tool, which is extra work, but this doesn’t seem to bother these folks. 🙂 That is why the new Timeline feature of our Timetracker app is specifically designed to give back the easy flow and feel of this personal note-keeping inside Jira.

 
As a bonus benefit, it also allows for creating half-finished worklogs, so if someone really wants to keep this habit up, they now can, in Jira from the beginning. Then, when details of the worklog emerge later like the end date of a task or the Issue key, they can easily go back to add this information.