Holiday Accruals

We’ve started some work to provide you with integrated holiday accrual for your workers who are paid on a PAYE basis. Our new holiday accruals feature allows you to specify an accrual rate set on the client level, and then automatically calculate the worker’s accrued holiday pay each week.

To try out this new feature, please go to Settings -> Timesheets, and tick “Enable holiday accrual” in the General section.

You will then have access to a new menu item in the “Tools & Reports” menu, called Holiday Accrual. From here you can see all your workers who are configured to be on PAYE, and also see their total accrued pay as well as their 12 week average pay. The 12 week average pay will allow you to determine the rate of pay when they take holidays. Currently this is not linked directly to our leave bookings module, so if your worker takes holiday, you will need to deduct the amount paid in holiday manually by click on the New Deduction button on the top left.

Our plan for the future is to link this to the leave bookings module, and also link it with AWR so you can have a pre and post AWR holiday accrual rate. Watch this space!

holiday_accrual

Full timezone support

We just wanted to let our international customers that we do care, and so we have now implemented some new changes to show all times in your local timezone. Previously this was only available on some key fields, but this has now been extended to include all timesheet, expenses, leave bookings and billing/pay reports and tools.

You will also notice that we now recognise specific timezones, rather than just allowing you to set your timezone offset. To ensure you are on the correct timezone, please go to Settings->Account where you can configure it.

October release – Various updates

Please see below a summary of some of the minor features introduced in our October release:

  • Added client category field to standard time & cost reports
  • Added pay and charge rate mapping type field to employee time & cost reports
  • Added ability to import client country for main and billing addresses
  • Added ability to email all assigned approvers on various expense form notifications
  • Added ability to show pay rates in a timesheet submitter’s
  • Added tax rate import into the task and employee importers
  • Added default overtime rule which can be set on the client level
  • Added First/Last/Salutation fields to Quickbooks clients exporter

 

Tax rate enhancements

As part of our ongoing work on tax rate codes, we have added the following new functionality to tax rates:

  • Ability to configure whether a tax rate is to be used for expenses, client billing or both.
  • Recognition of a specific tax rate for reverse charge expenses, which is then automatically used in reverse charge client invoices
  • Linking of Timesheet Portal tax rates to Xero tax rates for tighter integration. To configure this, please go to Settings->Client Invoices->Export Settings, and then click on Connect to Xero

tax rates link to xero

 

Easier access to Timesheet Portal

Our process for authentication has been improved to make it more secure and save you time when logging in. Rather than auto-filling your password on the login page, if you simply access our login page we will log you in if you have previously selected “Remember me on this computer”. As part of this process we have also enhanced the process for identifying you, such that we no longer store your password encrypted on your local machine. Instead we now use access tokens, so no part of your password, even stored as a hash or encrypted key is kept locally. This will ensure that no one can recover your Timesheet Portal password even if they have full access to your browser.

New look and feel to employee profile section

We’ve upgraded the left hand toolbar and upgraded the general look and feel of the employee profile section to provide your employee’s with a better experience. We hope you like these changes and look forward to seeing this new look being applied across more sections of the system. Below is an example of Bank Details section on the employee profile. This works nicely with our new starter info feature, providing a more streamlined and user-friendly process to capture information from your new starters.

employee profile

Invoicing enhancements

We’ve added some new features to make client invoicing better for you.

Firstly we now perform checks when producing automatic invoices to ensure there are no conflicting invoice numbers, and will provide you with the numbers we beleive will be generated in the preview. Just in case someone produces invoices at the same time your producing yours, we perform another check as we produce each invoice, and will adjust the numbers accordingly to ensure you dont end up with duplicate numbers.

Our second change is a new setting in Settings->Client Invoicing->General. The new setting is called Include zero charge items in invoices to maintain timesheet links. Its a mouthful, but its very useful. It caters for scenarios where you are tracking elements in your timesheets which are not necessarily chargeable to the client but you wish to have included in the attached timesheets in invoices. By default, when we attach a timesheet to an invoice we only include the time that is charged for in the invoice. Some of our customers have timesheets in which chargeable time is logged and non-chargeable time as well, but they wish both elements to be shown to the client in attached timesheets with their invoice. Thats exactly what this feature is for. Turn it on, and when you previous your invoices you will see the £0 items, however when you open up the invoice after being produced, you will no longer see this item as it is hidden, so you don’t get £0 entries in your invoices, but you get to see the timesheet data for those £0 entries.

Our final recent change is a little bit of optimisation on fixed fee invoicing. We’ve adjusted this feature so you can produce fixed fee invoices and have the ability to remove any row from the invoice, add new rows and do whatever you want without breaking the link to the original timesheet entries linked ot that invoice. This will give you a more reliable process for creating fixed fee invoices.

New leave bookings widgets

Given its the holiday season, we’ve added 2 new Summer treats for you, in the form of dashboard widgets. So if you are using our leave bookings module, then please edit your dashboard and add in the Public Holidays widget and the Upcoming holiday bookings widget, so you can quickly see check upcoming public holidays and also see who’s about to sneak off on holiday!

dashboard widgets

New starter data required feature

We know that some of you spend a great deal of time trying to get all the right information from you new starters, whether your workforce are permanent employees or limited company contractors. So you will be pleased to know we’re here to help.. again! Phase one of our new starter info now allows you to define new starter configurations, and choose what information is required from your workers. Currently you can choose to request the following:

  • Contact details
  • Bank details
  • Employment details
  • HMRC new starter declaration

To make use of this great feature, please log into your account using a general administrator user account, and go to Settings->Employees, and then select New starter info from the left hand toolbar. You can define multiple configurations to request different peices of information from your workers. When your worker logs in, they are redirected straight to their Profile page, and on the right hand side they are presented with a list of items that are required before they can start filling in timesheets.

new starter info

So what’s next you may ask ? Phase two will provide you with the ability to set default configurations for different types of employment, and phase 3 will see the integration of document uploading with this feature as well. This will give you the ability to request a perment employee fills in the standard HMRC new starter declaration and uploads their P45, but a limited company contractor must fill in their empoyment company details  and upload their PI insurance certificate and VAT certificate. Keep tuned, these should all be in place by October.

Feedback and real usage scenarios which may help us refine this new feature to cater for more needs is welcome, please let us know!

Easier report sharing process

You’ll be pleased to know that we’ve introduced a new process to make it easier to share reports. Previously, report sharing was handled through user permissions, which meant that in order to share a report, a user with the ability to edit other user’s permissions had to add a special permission to share a report. This meant that only people with high privileges were able to share reports. The way report sharing was previously handled also meant that the person who runs the shared report was always able to run that report will full administrator permissions.

Our new report sharing feature allows anyone who has access to the Reports page (through one of the reporting permissions) to share a report, and choose whether to share the report using the report owner’s permissions or whether the report should run under the context of the user who the report is shared with.

To share a report, it must be a custom report and you must be the owner of the report. You can check if you are the owner of a custom report by clicking on it on the Reports page, and checking the text at the bottom of the report title & logo section which will state who is the owner of the report. If you are the owner of the report, then you will see the “Report Sharing” tab. Click on this tab and add your users who you want to see your report. Then you choose whether the report runs under your permissions or not.

The report sharing permission context works as follows: Say for example you are a project manager, you therefore have permissions to view all the time and charges for your projects.  You may wish to simply share the reporting structure of a report with another user, without letting them view all the data. So you could share it and untick “Use my own permission levels when other users run this report”,  which means if another project manager runs the report, they would only see their own time and the time for their own projects.  Instead, you could tick the checkbox, and that would allow anyone who runs that shared report to see exactly the data you see. You could also apply a filter on the report (for example for a specific client), as shared reports do not run from the normal reports page, which means you can limit the data that the person who runs your report see.

report_sharing

 

Various updates – Recruitment edition

Please see below a list of minor updates included in our latest release

Ability to track the person who created a timesheet record

This is useful in environments where you are creating timesheets on behalf of submitters often, and want to be able easily check in a report who created a timesheet. This is a new available field called Timesheet Created by, and can be included in a Contractor Time & Cost per Job report having Timesheet Time Grouping.

Include expense audit trail in downloaded invoices with expenses attached

You can now include the expense form audit trail in your attached expense forms sent to clients. This is configured by a new setting available in Settings->Client Invoicing->General.

Direct links to open timesheets in rejected timesheet emails.

Help your contractors out by giving them a direct link to open up a rejected timesheet. This link can be formed by editing your template for Rejected Timesheets, and including the tag %TIMESHEETURL%.

Import work patterns from CSV files

If you regularly import job records through CSV files (through the user interface or through automated synchronisation feeds) you can now include the working pattern assigned to a specific job. This is done making use of a new field for each day of the week, allowing you to enter the time in [start time hh:mmm]-[end time hh:mm], e.g. 09:00-17:00. If your rate code is just a total hours or days, then you just enter the total amount, e.g. 09:00 for 9 hours, or 1.00 for 1 day.

New warning message when self billing emails have no target recipients

If you have not set up a self billing agency email address for a specific contractor, and have also disabled the ability for the contractor to view their self billing invoices, then we have nowhere to email the self billing invoices to! Previously you would not be informed of this, but now you will see a specific warning message in your self billing summary emails informing you so after sending out a batch of self billing emails.

Table page size in client & self billing invoice list

We are now saving your table page sizes for the self billing and client invoicing lists, so when you log back in to the system, you don’t need to keep setting your preferred page size.

Customise working patterns per job

Some of you have been making good use out of our new working patterns feature, which allows you to pre-set a generic set of working times, and apply them to a specific job, allowing for margin forecasting and for pre-populating timesheets. We’re pleased to announce that you can now set up working patterns on a per-job level, so that you don’t need to define them in a separate list. This is more useful if your working patterns differ for every booking that you make, rather than having a generic 5 days a week for most bookings.

To make use of this great new feature, edit your job record, go to the Rates & Billing tab, and set Working Pattern to Custom Working Pattern. You will see an editable working pattern appear on the top right.

timesheet working pattern custom

Configure your default modules when creating new user accounts

You can now control which modules are enabled by default when creating new employees. To set these up, please go to Settings->Employees, and tick the relevant modules in the Default Enabled modules section.

default modules

 

Don’t forget you can also control mandatory fields and configure default values for other fields from this settings page as well.

 

Capture HMRC new starter details

This one is for our UK customers who wish to record PAYE employee’s new starter information. We’ve added an additional section to the Employment tab when editing an employee record, allowing you to capture the new employee’s current tax year working situation as well as student loan information. Soon to come, we will make this section available to employee’s accounts so that they can fill in this information when logging in for the first time after their account is created.

As you know, Timesheet Portal does not provide payroll functionality, however you may wish to report on this information so you can export it to your favourite payroll package.

hmrc new starter details