Timesheet approval is useful if you need tighter control over edits made to time and expense entries. It allows project managers and administrators to review and approve timesheets for other users; once a timesheet is approved, the time and expense entries for that week are locked and can only be edited by administrators.
Note: It’s always possible to report on and invoice for tracked time and expenses, regardless of whether they’ve been approved.
Who Can Use Timesheet Approval
Timesheet approval is available for accounts with five or more people.
Activating Timesheet Approval
You can activate timesheet approval by doing the following:
- Click Settings (top right).
- Click Choose Modules.
- Check the box for Timesheet Approval.
- Save your changes.
If you decide later that you don’t need timesheet approval, just head back to your Choose Modules page and uncheck the Timesheet Approval box.
Keep in mind that removing the timesheet approval module will not unlock timesheets that have been approved and locked—if you want to edit any timesheets, you’ll need to go back and manually unlock them (more on that in the Unlocking Timesheets section of this article!) while timesheet approval is still enabled.
Submitting and Approving Time and Expenses
How to Submit Time and Expenses
Time and expenses are submitted and approved together—it’s not possible to submit or approve only time or only expenses.
- Go to Timesheets > Time or Timesheets > Expenses.
- From Timesheets > Time click the Submit for Approval button (lower right corner). From Timesheets > Expenes click the Submit for Approval link below the expense timeframe (on the left).
- If you’ve tracked only time, your timesheet will then submit.
- If you’ve tracked time and expenses, you’ll be taken to a review screen and will need to click Submit for Approval at the bottom of the page to confirm the submission. If you don’t click the Submit for Approval button on the review screen your timesheet will not be submitted.
After submission, timesheets can still be edited until they’re actually approved. Approvers will always see the most up-to-date entries.
Approving a timesheet locks the entries for the entire week, so be sure to only submit your timesheet once the week is over!
Who Can Approve Time and Expenses
- Administrators can approve all timesheets.
- Project managers can approve time and expenses tracked to projects they manage.
Approving Time and Expenses
To approve submitted timesheets, project managers and administrators can head over to Timesheets > Pending Approval and do one of the following:
- Click Approve All Timesheets to approve everyone’s timesheet.
- Approve individual timesheets by clicking into a user’s timesheet and clicking Approve Timesheet.
Timesheets cannot be rejected. However, if a timesheet needs to be changed before being approved, you have two choices:
- Project managers and administrators can send a message to the timesheet owner asking them to edit and re-submit. Just click the Send user email link.
- Administrators can make changes directly from the Pending Approval screen. Click on the user’s week that you’d like to change, then click on the column header of the day you’d like to change. You’ll be taken directly to that person’s timesheet, where you can make your edits.
All pending and approved timesheets for the entire history of your account are kept in Timesheets > Archive.
If you need to unlock an approved timesheet, head over to Timesheets > Archive and click into the timesheet in question. Then click the button at the bottom right to Withdraw Approval.
For more information on unlocking time entries, check out our article on How to Unlock a Timesheet
Timesheet Submission Emails
Project managers will get an email alert when someone submits time or expenses to projects they manage. If a project has no manager, then all of the administrators in your account will get the email alert.
If you would like to turn off timesheet submission emails:
- Click on your name in the top right corner and select My Profile.
- In the Basic Info section, under Notifications, uncheck Email me if people submit timesheets for projects I manage.
- Save your settings.
You can always check on any outstanding timesheets by heading over to Timesheets > Unsubmitted. If you need to remind your users to submit their timesheets, you can either send individual reminders or set up automatic reminders to be sent each week to everyone in your account.
Sending One-Time Reminders
- From Timesheets > Unsubmitted, check the box next to each person’s name, or select all users by clicking the All link at the top of the list.
- Click Send Email Reminders.
Sending Automatic Reminders
Automatic reminders are sent at 4 pm (in your account’s time zone) on the day you choose. Reminders sent on Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday are reminders to submit the timesheet for the previous week. Reminders sent on Thursday or Fridays are reminders to submit the timesheet for the current week. In either case, reminders will only be sent to people who haven’t already submitted their timesheet for the applicable week.
To set up a reminder:
- From Timesheets > Unsubmitted, click Set Up Reminder.
- Select which day you would like the reminder to be sent and click Set Reminder.