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Team members, project managers, issue managers, executives
Even if your project team does not perform client-facing projects, you can still benefit from entering time in Project Insight. Learn how long tasks take to perform and modify your project schedules for better estimates in the future. If you do work on billable projects, then this training is mission critical for team members, project managers and the financial team.
- Learn how to update tasks
- Understand the different ways to enter time and expenses
- Decide which method is best for your team
- Know how to get started entering time and expenses
- Be able to run and customize time and expense reports
Access Your Tasks from the Dashboard
Today’s training covers how to access your task list, update your task status and track your time and enter expenses.
One of the benefits of using an enterprise project and portfolio management solution is that all of your work is stored in one central location. This empowers you to see all your tasks and other assignments for the week which enables you to manage your day to day activities more efficiently.
What you’re seeing is a typical team member Home Screen.
It can be accessed by hovering over My Insight menu option and selecting Home Screen.
You can also make this your default screen when you login, hover on Favorites and select Set as default.
From this Home Screen, you can easily access all the information that is important to you.
For example, you can see you have some tasks assigned to you. This is indicated by the red number on the task option.
Click on the Tasks option to display those tasks.
You can see the dates the tasks are expected to be completed and you can plan your activities accurately based on this information.
You’ll also see immediately any tasks that are overdue because the end date will be red.
If your list is too long, you may use the ‘on it’ feature to narrow down the work. You can manage your work by flagging those tasks that you are actively working on right now.
To do this, hover over the task and select On It.
This way your project manager, your department manager and the other team members can see what you’re working on, without having to write you an email, drop by your desk and talk to you or phone you.
Without these interruptions your productivity will increase and you are providing the information to stakeholders in a pro-active and timely manner.
Click on the On It text, to show a list of just those tasks you’re actively working on or click All to show all tasks again.
Display Options on My Tasks
Another way to manage the number of tasks that appear is to use the display options.
You can see that there are a variety of options here. For example, tasks are set to appear seven days or before their start date. You can change these settings to suit your needs.
You can see there is also an option to ‘automatically remove my tasks when marked complete’. This is checked by default.
You can uncheck this to see all complete tasks again. That way you can make any changes to completed tasks, for example, if you made a mistake and needed to correct it.
Some other options include: to only display tasks that have their predecessors marked complete; and also to only display tasks that you are assigned as the task owner. If task has more than one resource assigned, one of those is always the designated owner. Check this if you only want to see those tasks that you are the owner on.
The remaining options, Show Start Date, End Date, Assigned By, the Parent, Description and Path, dictate what data fields you want on the task list form.
For now, just leave the settings as they are, without saving your changes and click the X to close the window.
Updating Your Task Status
Now you’ve decided which tasks to work on based on the scheduled end date and you’re ready to start work. As you’re working on tasks, you need to keep your project managers informed about your progress.
This is very important to your organization. In order to understand if projects are going to be completed on time and on budget, project managers need to understand how much work has been accomplished and how much work is still left to do.
Updating a percent complete to reflect task status is a common project management process.
In some organizations, team members have no problem determining what percent complete they are at.
However, as PMI says, ‘people are terrible estimators’ so you may set up Project Insight to use terminology that is more familiar to your team instead. Team members may update tasks based on words like Started, Almost Done, and Done.
You can see the status for your task is Not Started.
Click on that Status to bring up the Update Status layer.
Click on the drop down for the Work Status.
Your status options in our example are Not Started which equates to 0%, Started which equals 25% complete, In Progress which is 50% complete, Almost Done represents 90% and Done equates to 100% complete.
This way, you can select one of these more familiar terms when updating the status instead of entering a % complete or an estimated time remaining.
However, even though you are using words to describe the status, it still equates to a % complete in the back-end.
By utilizing words to describe % complete, this can help increase your rate of user adoption while still giving your project managers the earned value and planned value information they need to manage the project effectively.
Click on Started.
Now in some organizations, depending on their project management maturity level and the types of projects they do, all you want is for your team to update the task status. If that’s the case, just click Save now.
Entering Time from the Work Status Layer
However, if you need to update time, then it is a best practice to enter time at the same time as when you’re updating the task status.
You can enter time from this same Update Status layer.
Click on the Time section to expand it.
You can enter your time rapidly for the current day.
Enter in the hours you spend and click Save.
As you can see, it’s very simple for you to update the status and enter time for the current day right from the Dashboard or from the Home Screen.
However, you can also use this same form to enter more than one time entry.
Let’s click on the Status again to bring back up the Update Status form.
You will notice the time section is expanded out and you don’t have to expand it out again. That’s because it remembered that you had it expanded out last time and knows that’s the way you do your work, so it keeps that setting.
You will see your previous time entry if you have any, and you can also add more entries in the blank gray line.
For example, if you had time worked on different days you can change the date by entering it in or clicking on the calendar icon.
Select the date, perhaps you forgot to enter your time for yesterday, click yesterday’s date.
Now enter time.
Click the Save icon on that line.
Then when you’re done, click Save to save all the entries.
Competing the Task
Now that you have updated the task status and entered time, you may mark it as complete.
Click on the status link again to bring up the Update Status form.
Click on the drop down for the Work Status.
Although you don’t see this, when you select done, the % complete is set automatically to 100% and the remaining hours is set to 0.
Once you’ve marked a task as being completed, it will be removed from your task list.
Remember, it is not appearing because in the Display Options, you set it to remove completed tasks.
Now you can start work on the next task on your list.
Updating Task Status and Entering Time from the Dashboard
That’s one way to update the task status and enter time, directly from the Dashboard or from the Home Screen.
You may also do this same function but from your Dashboard.
Click the X to close the list of tasks.
Click on My Insight.
This takes you to your main dashboard. You may have this set as your default form when you log in instead of the Home Screen. It is up to you and what you prefer.
You have a list of your tasks displayed.
Click on the Display Options icon on your task list.
You can change the settings for which tasks display, the same as you did on your Home Screen. It is the same set of options; however, there are two different settings, one for the Home Screen and one for your Tasks on your Dashboard.
Click X to close that layer.
To update the status and enter time, click the Status the same as you did on the Home Screen.
The same Update Status layer appears. Update your status and enter your time the same way.
Click Cancel to exit.
Updating Task Status and Entering Time from Task Detailed Form
If you prefer to view more detail before updating your tasks, you may also use the Task Detail form to enter time.
To get to the Task Detail form from your Dashboard or Home Screen, click on the task name
This brings you to the task detail form.
From this form you are able to see the scheduled start and end date of the task, who the task is assigned to, this is also the task owner, if there are additional resources, the expected amount of work or effort, the duration and the status.
These are the main details for the task, but there is more detail available. This is listed under different sections, Details, Related Items and Task Resources.
Click on a section label to expand that section and see that information.
Click on the Details section.
You can see the Actual Start and End Date if they have been entered, the Work Hours Remaining and the Resource Type role that is required on this task along with other data.
You can click on the name to collapse a section to keep your screen showing only the information that is important to you.
Click on the Details section to collapse that section.
The software will remember whether different sections are expanded or collapsed so that you don’t have to set them each time.
You can review comments about the task on the comments tab.
You can add a comment by clicking on the plus sign.
Type in the Comment and click Save.
Your comment is then displayed and is visible to anyone who has access to this Project and this Task.
The comments section may also shows you system generated comments such as a change to the scheduled start date, a change of duration and the like, if something on the task changed along the way.
Entering Time on the Task Detail Form
You can add time entries and also see the time entries that were already entered for this task by clicking on the Time tab.
Any time that you or any another resource entered time against this task, it will be listed.
To add a new time entry, simply type in the Actual Hours in the gray blank line and hit save.
Add additional time entries the same way, changing the date or time code as required.
Entering Expenses on Task Detail Form
From the Task Detail form, you can enter time, but from this same form, you can also enter any hard costs that have occurred on that task.
To do that, click on the Expense tab.
For example, if you had to purchase supplies to complete this task, you may enter that total expense in the Actual Cost field.
Or alternatively, enter in a quantity and a unit price and the system will calculate the total actual cost.
You can also change the date of the expense, change the expense code and enter a description if you require.
Then click Save.
And that’s now tracking any non-labor costs against your task.
Entering Time on the Time Entry Grid
The other way a lot of team members choose to enter time is from a Time Entry Grid.
Go to My Insight, select time and choose Time Entry Grid.
If you need to account for the time spent all week, you may choose to enter everything from one form instead of going to each individual task.
Or if you’d like to get a high level overview of all your tasks for the week or given time period, you may also choose to use this form to do your time entry.
Empowering team members to interact with the system the way they want instead of a set, prescribed way, encourages buy-in and participation.
To see the tasks for a particular project, click on the arrow next to the task name to expand that out.
Do that for all your projects on the grid.
There are a number of tasks that are scheduled to be worked on this week for this project.
To enter time on the time entry grid, simply enter your time for the day on the different tasks you worked on.
At the bottom of the grid, you’ll notice that all of your hours for the week and day are adding up automatically as soon as you tab out of time slot.
After you have finished entering all of your time, click Save and that will save it to the database.
You can see the hours that are now saved because they are displayed on a separate line below the task.
Entering a Description
You can change other information as well from this grid such as the time code and the work status.
Click on the work status down arrow and select your status.
Do the same for the time code. Time and Expense codes are covered in detail in other training sessions.
If you want to enter a description for the time entry, whenever you’re in one of these boxes, you’ll see the little triangle in the corner, click on it and the description layer will appear:
Enter in a description.
Click out of the box to save it.
Changing the Grid Options
You can also set up your time entry grid to customize it to suit your preferences.
Click on the Display Options icon.
Most of you will set the options once according to your specific business process, setting it once and that’s it. However, if you want to interact with the information in different ways, you can change the options.
For example, by default the time entry grid groups tasks by project.
Click on the Group by Options to expand that section.
You can see here, it is grouped by project, but you can remove that grouping and just have the tasks listed in alphabetical order. You remove the grouping by clicking the remove icon, or alternatively you could add additional groupings such as by company or by summary task.
Click in the column drop down to see the available groupings.
Entering Time at the Project Level
There is an option in the Administration section that your system administrator may have set that enables you to enter time at a project level and not just at a task level.
If that is turned on, you will see an option, Show Project Time Entry input when grouping by Project.
Check on that to allow time entry on the grid by project.
Click the Group By Options section to collapse it.
Filter the Time Entry Grid by Project
To do that, click the Company time Entries & Project filter to expand it.
Click on the Project Filters drop down and choose only the projects you want to appear.
Just leave that blank for now as you want to see all projects that have tasks scheduled to be worked on this week.
Project Insight allows you to enter time for projects and tasks, but you may also enter non-project time so that they can get a complete picture of their work for the day or week.
One of the ways you can enter non-project time is to enter time at the company or organizational level.
Click on the Companies Entries drop down.
A lot of organizations will allow time entry for their company to allow you to enter non-project time such as ‘meetings’ or ‘administration.’
Click on your company name to select it.
You can see that the company now appears on the grid and you can enter time against it.
This company will appear on the grid and you can enter time against it.
Click on the Company time Entries & Project filter to collapse that section.
You may also choose which columns of data you want to view while entering time.
Click on the Column Selection Filtering Options to expand that out.
For example, you may want to add in the End Date of the task so you can see when its expected to be completed.
To do that, click on the End Date and click the arrow to move it to the Selected Columns section.
You can apply these changes by clicking the Update Display icon.
The scheduled end date of each task now shows.
Also, because you enabled time to be entered at the project level, there is time entry boxes not only for the task but also on the project line.
At the bottom of the grid a section called Companies now appears.
Your company is listed and there is time entry boxes showing for that.
Time Entry Worksheet
When it’s time to submit your time sheet, you can submit it directly from the time entry grid by clicking the ‘Save & Submit Time Sheet’ icon.
However, if you see a mistake and you need to correct it, or you just want to double check all your entries before submitting them, you can do this from the Time Entry Worksheet.
To access the Time Entry Worksheet, you can click Save & View Worksheet.
The other way to get to the worksheet is to hover on My Insight and select the Time Entry Worksheet option.
The Worksheet shows you all the time entries you have for the given time period.
It is grouped by default by day, so you can easily see the total number of hours that you entered for each day.
You can add an entry by entering the details in the gray blank line.
Change the company, project or task if required.
Change the date or time code.
Drag the Actual Hours column header wider to see the entire label.
Enter the actual hours.
Enter a description if required and click Save.
Edit an Existing Entry
To edit or correct an entry, click the edit icon or double click on the white space on the line.
Change the details as you need to. For example, maybe you made a mistake and actually worked more hours than you orginally recorded so you increase the hours by 1 and save it.
Click Save to save the changes.
Delete an Existing Entry
If you need to delete an entry, just click the delete option which is the red arrow on the line you want to delete.
You’ll be asked to confirm that you want to delete the entry. Click Okay.
Like all other places in Project Insight, you may also change your column selections and other settings for this form by clicking the Display Options icon.
If you want to add additional columns, for example, maybe we want the Task End Date displayed.
Type in T to find that column and double click on it to move it to the selected columns list.
Click on it in the selected columns list and click the up arrow to move it to display after the task.
You will see the new information displayed.
Submitting Your Time
When you are ready to submit your time, click Create/Submit Time Sheet.
A dialogue box appears that tells you the current week and the number of hours you are submitting.
There may be some other details you can set. Whether or not different information appears depends on your business process and what your system administrator has set in the software configuration options.
This takes the time out of your unsubmitted time entries view and you can see now that the worksheet is empty. Only unsubmitted time entries will appear on this worksheet.
View Submitted Time
However, you are still able to view your submitted time entries.
To do that select My Insight, select Time and select Saved Time Sheets.
You’ll see all your saved time sheets.
Click on the date to go to the detail of that time sheet.
If you have any time from the past that hasn’t been submitted, the software will give you a little warning. ‘Hey you’ve got some time entries that you need to submit.’
Entering Expenses in the Expense Entry Worksheet
You’ve entered expenses one way, from the Task Detail screen.
However, you can you also enter Expenses from the Expense Entry Worksheet.
Go to My Insight, Expenses and Expense Entry Worksheet.
You enter the cost in the gray line.
Select the Company, Project, and Task.
Enter the time and set the Expense Code.
Then enter in the total actual cost.
Attach a Receipt
You can also attach a receipt for the expense. You can scan them or if you purchased online you may have a PDF receipt that you can upload.
If you want to upload a scanned receipt, click on the Expense Receipt icon on the line.
Browse and select the file.
Click Save to add the receipt.
There is now a receipt icon that shows.
Click on it to view the receipt details.
Update from Your Mobile Phone or Tablet
If you are out in the field, or just prefer to, you can updated you work from the mobile interface.
The mobile interface allows you to update your tasks and expenses and enter time from any smart phone or tablet.
Let’s switch to the mobile interface.
This is similar to what the screen would look like on your mobile phone.
It also has a very similar interface to the Home Screen on the full site.
Click on your Tasks.
A list of your tasks is displayed.
Click on a Task.
You’ll see the task details. If it’s complete, just click on Mark Complete.
If its not complete, click on the Update Status.
Change the Status, enter a comment and click Save.
You can also add time by clicking on the Add Time Entry.
Enter in the hours, add a description and click Save.
Entering Expenses from your Mobile
To enter expenses, click on Expense Entries.
Enter in the details about the expense the same way as we did on the Task Detail Form and the Expense Entry Worksheet.
For now, I’m just going to put in the Total Actual Cost and scroll to the bottom.
If you’d like to add a receipt, you may simply click on Save and Add Receipt.
On an actual mobile phone, after you click this, your phone will go to the camera and you can select a picture to upload or you can take a photo of your receipt then and there.
That is a very easy way to capture your receipts, especially when you are traveling. It will help you get those expense reports in for approval much more rapidly.
Exit out of the mobile site and go back to the full site by clicking on the full site option in the lower right hand corner.
Submitting Expenses for Approval
Submitting your expenses for approval, is the same process as for submitting time.
Go to your Expense Entry Worksheet from MyInsight.
Add any new ones or edit existing.
Make sure you have your receipts for expenses and then you submit them for approval by clicking ‘Create/Submit Expense Report.
Running Time and Expense Reports
To run Time and Expense reports, click on Reports.
Click on the Time Category.
Click on ‘Create Time Entry report.’
There are a lot of different options you can use to create your own reports.
For this session, just leave all the default parameters and click the update icon to create a time sheet report.
You can look at all the time entries that are out there.
To run expense reports, go back to the Reports and click on the Expense Category.
Click Create Expense Entry Report.
Again, you can change the different filtering options if you require.
Click the Update Display icon.
Of course, you may attend the training session on reports for more detail.