Logging your time! How to go about it

I log

Now that I gave you reasons to log your time, I should give you some tips on how to do it. Here is the way how I do it. I’m not saying it’s the best way, because it’s not. I’m actually working on improving my log system.

I’m a freelance artist, I usually make a quote on a project for a fixed or very well estimated number of items and then charge a set price. That means that I better have a god idea of the time it’s going to take me to finish or I can lose money, badly.

I usually have a computer folder for each project I work on. In this folder I keep a spreadsheet that relates only to this project. In it, I list the date I started and the date I finished a project as well as the time spent everyday and what I was working on during that time (animations, gui, backgrounds, etc.) Then I use it to divide the money I made by the time it took and see how much I got an hour to see if I should charge more for a similar project later on. It looks something like this:


Tracking billable and non billable hours
Do you track your billable and non-billable hours? If so, how?

My worksheet is awful but when I wanted to update it, I thought that there has to be a better way. My projects range from 5 to 60 hour things and I often have more than one going at the same time, at different stages of completion. I didn’t find a software that allowed me to log my time more conveniently yet.

Also, so far I haven’t been keeping track of my non-billable hours but I’m wondering if it would be worth it to keep track of them to see how much I really DO make an hour. Does anyone do that?

Do you also use the same system to keep track of who owes you what or is that a completely different system?

According to Microsoft, you can use Outlook to track your billable hours, here’s what they have to say about it.
*note: This is an old draft that I wrote to go with this post. I then proceeded to forget about it. I’m posting it on the off chance that it might be useful to some. It might not be complete but I can’t for the life of me remember what I wanted to do with it.*


One comment

  1. Rio

    Hey Qitsune,

    Thanks for the post and yes, it will be useful to some. I don’t freelance at the moment but doing a log will help me at least manage my time better!

    Btw, is this your log for your Phony Phace Art Qit? It says Avatar Maker but the time is kind of off…

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