Google Calendar Time Insights: A Comprehensive Guide (Updated 2023)
Image: Gaining Visuals
How much time do you spend in meetings every week? For many of us, it’s more than we would like to admit. But if you want to know for sure, it’s best to use a dedicated tool, like Google Calendar Time Insights. With the information this feature offers, you can assess whether meetings are occupying too much of your time, and make the necessary adjustments so that you can stay focused, improve your productivity, and enjoy a better work-life balance.
According to this article, 78% of workers believe their meeting schedules are chaotic, with 38% blaming upper management and 16% blaming their direct manager. An incredible 64% of employees are only excited about meetings when they’re well-planned, which isn’t always the case. If left ungoverned, meetings can often become long, tedious and unproductive, pulling people away from completing actual work.
Does this mean that all meetings are pointless? Absolutely not. Some are critical. Others add value, even if they’re not essential. And sometimes it is just nice to have a conversation with and bounce ideas off other humans, especially if you work remotely.
To stay productive and get the most value out of your work, however, it is important to determine how much time you’re spending in meetings, and to know which are important and which, quite literally, could have been an email.
Google Calendar Time Insights can help with this. It’s a simple tool that helps you track meeting times. Let’s take an in-depth look at how it works.
(Want to get some of your questions answered straight away? Simply skip to our frequently asked questions section at the end.)
Screen Time for Mac: Everything You Need to Know
Image source: Damian Patkowski
Being aware of how we spend our time can help us be more productive and focused. By revealing patterns of behavior, it can also help us to find a balance between the time we spend on different activities. But how do we know where our time is going? Using a time tracking tool such as Screen Time for Mac is a useful place to start. (But, it’s not the only option!)
Screen Time was an iPhone and iPad feature first, but it’s been available across all Apple devices, including Macs, for some time. Mac Screen Time first came out with macOS 10.15 Catalina, and has continued to be available on all subsequent versions, including macOS 11 Big Sur, macOS 12 Monterey and macOS 13 Ventura.
Curious about how Screen Time for Mac works and how you can use it to your advantage? Let’s start by answering a few frequently asked questions:
The Dangers of Work Overload and How to Avoid It (for You and Your Team)
Whether you’re the team leader, part of a team, or work for yourself, you’ve probably dealt with work overload. It’s a tricky condition that creeps up in organizations of any size. If work overload is unchecked, it can profoundly impact your people and work products.
In this article, we dive into work overload, its impact, and the steps you can take to avoid it. You can save your team from burnout and continue producing high-quality work with the right processes and tools.
Billable Hours and Non-billable Hours: How Time Tracking Tools Can Help You Find Balance
Allocating your time correctly is a freelancing necessity, and that means understanding and knowing how to manage your billable hours and non-billable hours. More than that, you need to be able to find the right balance between the two.
Billable hours are important, they’re the money generators. But they’re often only possible because you’ve spent non-billable time working on marketing your business and refining your sales pitch. Non-billable hours, however, don’t earn you any direct income. So while they’re often critical to your business growth, it can be hard to tell whether they’re worthwhile and to what extent.
Figuring out how to make your billable and non-billable time work for you can be tricky, but it’s not impossible. And getting it right can help to maximize your productivity, remove inefficiencies in your business, and boost your bottom line. We’re here to show you how.
Introducing Timing 2023.1: Analyze Your iPhone and iPad Usage with Timing!
Timing has always been a great tool to keep track of how you spend time on your Mac, but we know that many of you also use your mobile devices for work and personal use. Up until now, however, it has not been possible to collect your iPhone and iPad usage in the same way as your Mac usage.
But this changes today: We are excited to announce Timing 2023.1, which introduces a new feature that a lot of you have been asking for: Timing can now import your iPhone and iPad usage from Screen Time!
This feature, available in the Expert and Connect editions of Timing, lets you manage your time spent on mobile devices just like your Mac usage, with the full functionality of Timing’s timeline and activity list. Even Timing’s rules are available to automatically categorize your mobile device usage.
Using Timing to display your mobile activity has several advantages over the limited device usage view in the iOS and macOS system settings:
- A timeline that shows exactly when you used each device, and for what. No more guesswork, as opposed to Screen Time’s “hourly” granularity!
- Review any time range you want, rather than being limited to Screen Time’s day/week views.
- Archive Screen Time data for longer than the four weeks Apple allows.
- Categorize your mobile activities into projects using drag-and-drop.
- Timing can show even the full URLs of the websites you visited in Mobile Safari.
- You can quickly create manual time entries to annotate and categorize whole blocks of your mobile activity at once.
In addition to this new integration, Timing 2023.1 also features plenty of usability improvements. You can find an overview of all the changes in our release notes.
Read on for more information on how how to set up the integration, and what to expect from it!
Employee Monitoring vs. Time Tracking: How to Help Your Team Do Their Best Work
According to a survey by MIT, 34% of the US workforce has shifted to some type of remote work arrangement. The COVID-19 pandemic didn’t start the remote work trend, but it certainly accelerated it. For many businesses, the only options were to transition to remote work or close down.
This shift presents a challenge for some employers and team leaders. Where once they could monitor their team’s progress by simply roaming the office and having casual conversations, now they need to enlist digital tools to collect data on how their teams spend their time.
Because of this shift, some people are fearful of personal data security. We know the benefits of having our data harvested and analyzed, but we’re also aware of the risks. If a company doesn’t handle our data appropriately, we become exposed to abuse and privacy violations. The potential dangers make many people wary of digital tracking tools that monitor our actions, what we create, and the types of information we access.
As an employer or team leader, you naturally want information regarding the activities and productivity of your team. You need that data to make intelligent business decisions. But how much is too much? What are the appropriate types of information to track? Like many employers, you’re probably wrestling with these questions and more.
There are two main options for studying your team’s work and helping them do their best: employee monitoring and time tracking. This article explains these options and why traditional employee monitoring is too heavy-handed for modern workers.Read More…
Why Time Tracking is Critical for Remote Teams
Remote work is here to stay. While some companies still resist this new cultural trend, many embrace it. According to a study by The New York Times, 68% of employers “allow workers to telecommute as needed.” This trend was picking up speed before the pandemic, but COVID-19 seriously boosted it.
It’s no surprise that workers are happier and more productive when they control where and when they work. Some work better in the early hours before the rest of the world wakes up. Others prefer to work in the evening. Some sit at their cozy, in-home office, while others tour their city, visiting new cafes, parks, and libraries.
Remote work is popular among families, as well. Childcare costs are more expensive than ever, so working from home while kids play can be a significant income bump.
As remote work becomes mainstream, organizations must implement new workflows, systems, and tools to support this work style. They are finding new ways to manage their changing workforce, and one vital tool of this transition is time tracking.
We’ve discussed the benefits of time tracking in the past and the importance of using time tracking for teams. In this article, we want to focus on remote teams and the benefits time tracking offers for businesses and people.Read More…
What it Means to Be an Autonomous Team and 10 Steps to Create Team Autonomy
Steve Jobs famously said, “It doesn’t make sense to hire smart people and tell them what to do; we hire smart people so they can tell us what to do.”
Lee Iacocca shared a similar view: “I hire people brighter than me and get out of their way.”
Whether you’re building an internal team or hiring external contractors, you can often create a significant impact on your business by giving great people the freedom to solve problems in their own way. They produce better results, create more efficiencies, enable innovation, and overcome challenges in ways you might not otherwise.
But to get the most value out of great people, you must give them autonomy. With autonomy, they will work to their potential, and your business will reap the benefits of their knowledge and experience.
This article provides an overview of what it means to be an autonomous team. We discuss the characteristics of autonomous teams and offer some critical steps to create your own.
The 4 Day Week – Halfway Trial Results and Participating Countries
There is a lot of talk around the six-month trial of a 4-day work week in the United Kingdom. The trial is run by the 4 Day Week Global Foundation who funds research into 4-day week practices, the future of work and workplace wellbeing. The UK trial is in partnership with Autonomy and 4 Day Week UK.
What is the 4 Day Week?
The 4 Day Week Global Foundation is a not-for-profit community established by Andrew Barnes and Charlotte Lockhart. It aims to “provide a platform for like-minded people who are interested in supporting the idea of the 4 day week as a part of the future of work”. A future where workers get an extra day off per week with no reduction in pay. This is based on the 100-80-100™ model. Which stands for 100% pay, for 80% of the time and a commitment to maintain at least 100% of the output.
The UK Trial Halfway Results
The UK 6-month trial kicked off in June 2022 and will conclude in November 2022. The full pilot programme started in February this year with information sessions and a call to sign up. More than 70 UK organisations signed up for the 6-month trial with the halfway point results published last month. Some of these results include:
Key Features and Benefits You Need in a Team Time Tracking App
You’ve decided that time tracking is right for your team due to the potential productivity and work/life balance benefits. Now you’re ready to get started.
You’ll need a team time tracking app to track time accurately and reliably with as little disruption to your business and team as possible. While teams previously used paper forms and punched clocks to record time, those methods have become outdated and inefficient. We’re in the digital age; you need a powerful app.
A proper time tracking tool is more than just a stopwatch. It’s easy to use, records detailed information about individual activities, and keeps private data private. It lets teams work their best and administrators manage effectively.
But which time tracking app should you choose? Admittedly, several are available, so you must search for the right app for your organization. Consider your options carefully because this tool can profoundly impact your team’s performance.
This article lists the most important features you should look for in a potential time tracking app. Don’t settle on a tool until it meets these criteria.
(Before you dive in, consider browsing our complete guide on team time tracking. It’s a great primer on tracking the time of a group, including how time tracking works, the benefits you can get from it, and how to implement it in your team.)Read More…