How to Create Timesheets In Excel

Expert Tips
Beirit Harvey October 28, 2021 7 min read

This blog takes you through every step on how to create timesheets in Excel! If you prefer not to use Excel, we explain how to automate and simplify the timesheet creation process with a digital solution!

Photo by Anete Lusina from Pexels

Quick Guide

    Full disclosure, I have never had to create a timesheet in Excel. Until now. And let me tell you something, I wanted to pull my hair out after 10 minutes! 

    Yes, it’s true that accurately tracking your employee hours and creating timesheets is a necessary part of business management, and Excel seems like the logical choice given that it’s free! 

    However, just because Excel is free doesn’t make it the best tool to create employee timesheets and calculate payroll. It’s not a simple time tracking method whatsoever. And here’s why. 

    Why You Shouldn’t Use Excel Timesheet To Create Timesheets And Calculate Payroll

    Using Excel to create timesheets may be a good solution at first, but is not an efficient timesheet in the long run. 

    There are a few major drawbacks when creating a timesheet with Excel…

    1. They take a long time to create, especially if you’re not familiar with Excel. 
    2. Because hours have to be manually inputted, they can be full of mistakes and errors. Which only leads to heavy fines down the road from the IRS.
    3. Without oversight, employees can manipulate hours, also known as time theft
    4. Formulas must be used to count regular hours worked, total hours worked, and overtime hours worked. Formulas must also be used to calculate payroll from these timesheets at the end of the month. 
    5. Creating reports is difficult because Excel was not created as a reporting tool. 

    These are just a few examples of some of the drawbacks of creating Excel timesheets. In the end, using Excel to create timesheets can potentially cost your company thousands of dollars because of silly, careless mistakes. 

    Using an employee time tracking app is really the best choice. With an employee time tracking app, like Connecteam, business owners can accurately track employee hours and create timesheets with a digital GPS powered time clock. No more manual processes, no more mistakes, and no more time theft. 

    Automate & Simplify Your Timesheet & Payroll Process With Connecteam Today!

    14-day free trial, no credit card required.

    Start Your Free Trial
    best employee timesheet app

    How To Create A Timesheet Template In Excel

    Creating an Excel timesheet is pretty easy, if you’ve used it before. It includes most of the details you would see on a normal timesheet, such as the employees information, date, tasks completed, start and end time, regular hours worked, overtime hours worked, and absences. 

    Once you’ve added all the details you want your employees to fill in the Excel timesheet, you need to place formulas within the regular hours worked cell, overtime hours worked cell, and total hours worked cell; so that Excel can calculate the hours that have been inputted. 

    Additionally, you must format the cells that have the clock in and out hours in time format, and the total hours worked per pay period, regular hours worked, and overtime hours work in the number format. Also, any cell that has “amount earned” needs to be in the accounting format. 

    It’s important to remember, if the values written by your employees are incorrect, you can end up massively overpaying or underpaying employee wages when it’s time for payroll

    How To Calculate Total Hours Worked In Excel

    Here is where it gets a bit complicated. In order for Excel to calculate total hours worked, you must type in a formula “=(end time – start time*24)” using that employee’s corresponding cells. 

    totally hours worked excel image

    How To Calculate Regular Work Hours In Excel

    Calculating regular hours worked, requires you to set how many regular hours your employees are allowed to work before it turns into overtime. To do so, input the formula “=IF(total hours >= (max regular hours), (max regular hours), (max regular hours). In this example, the normal regular hours allowed to work is 9.

    regular hours worked excel image

    How To Calculate Overtime In Excel

    To calculate overtime in Excel, you must also input another formula. To do so, input the formula “=if(total hours<=max regular hours, 0, (total hours – max regular hours))

    overtime hours worked excel image

    How To Calculate Payroll With Excel Formulas

    You can also use Excel to calculate payroll. It’s crucial to remember that if the hours inputted by your employees are incorrect, then your payroll will also be incorrect. 

    First you must calculate the total hours worked including overtime. The formula to calculate the total hours is “sum(first:last row)”. After that you must use the same formula to calculate all the over time hours. And to calculate the pay, just multiply the hourly rate, by the number of hours worked. 

    For this example, we will use an hourly pay rate of $15.00 an hour. 

    calculate payroll excel image

    Repeat this process for overtime hours and total hours to calculate payroll, and be sure to put the correct hourly wage for employees who work overtime. Then you must add the sum of the amount earned and overtime earned to calculate total wages earned.

    calculate payroll excel timesheet image

    Why It’s Important To Lock Your Timesheets 

    Being able to lock your timesheets is essential when it comes to sharing timesheets with employees and creating accurate timesheets for payroll. Timesheets that don’t lock can be changed or manipulated which will cause payroll errors down the line. 

    With Excel you can lock your timesheets by only allowing certain employees to access the Excel spreadsheet. You can also turn off sharing at a certain time of the day, after employees have finished inputting their hours, so that employees can’t change or add hours later. 

    The good news is that you don’t have to do any of this. There are amazing employee time tracking software solutions that can create timesheets and export to payroll in just a few clicks. 

    How To Automate The Process With A Digital Solution: Connecteam

    Excel does have a few flaws…

    1. It takes a lot of time and effort if you’re not familiar with Excel.
    2. It’s not organized.
    3. Formulas can break and affect calculations.
    4. It’s impossible to easily communication with employees about their timesheet through Excel.
    5. All hours must be manually input.
    6. Excel isn’t online, making collaboration nearly impossible.

    If making Excel timesheets is as difficult for you as it is for me, then you’ll be happy to know there is a way to automate this whole process without using Excel! An employee management software, like Connecteam, allows you to do everything Excel does and so much more. 

    With Connecteam, you can accurately track employee hours in the following ways: 

    1. A GPS powered time clock allows employees to clock in and out directly from their mobile device. 
    2. Completely customizable timesheets.
    3. Save time by reviewing and approving timesheets directly on the admin dashboard. 
    4. Easily lock timesheets so employees cannot change hours without approval and reduce employee time theft. 
    5. Set payroll periods, and automatically notify employees when it’s time for them to review their timesheets. 
    6. Automated notifications alert managers to overtime, time limitations, double-time, and more. 
    7. Managers can easily contact employees about their timesheet through the in-app chat and resolve any issues or discrepancies.

    An employee time tracking software, like Connecteam, makes creating timesheets easy and efficient. With Connecteam, there’s no need to manually create an Excel timesheet or input confusing formulas. Everything is automated, accurate, and simple. 

    Take The Headache Out Of Employee Timesheet Creation With Connecteam Today!

    The Bottom Line: How to Create Timesheets in Excel & Why You Shouldn’t

    As mentioned before, if you’re not already familiar with how to use Excel, then creating timesheets can be difficult and take a lot of time. 

    Not to mention, they may be full of mistakes or errors — costing you money when it comes time to calculate payroll. 

    There is a light at the end of the tunnel! You can now automate the process with a digital solution like Connecteam. Take out the headache of creating manual Excel timesheets and start accurately tracking employee hours, create timesheets in minutes, and export to payroll. 

    Create Employee Timesheets In Minutes & Export To Payroll With Just A Few Clicks – Connecteam!

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