Customizing Your Timesheet

Closing Time Entry By Period


A potential issue for many firms is that at times you may have users entering time for a period that has already been billed out or have users that are submitting timesheets late. The solution for this is to enable a lock date for your timesheets.

How Timesheet Locking Works

The timesheet lock date is intended as a set date in the system to block all new entries from being entered by anyone who is not a financial/system administrator. This allows more control to company owners and managers who require accurate reports when running against financial periods that are expected to be closed out. 

Any user who attempts to enter time within a closed period (i.e., prior to the lock date), will find that the time entry pages are unable to be edited and the user will see a message indicating that the period is locked. The same is true for any user attempting to submit time for a locked period.

This lock date will automatically update as time goes by, so you don’t have to worry about manually updating the lock date each time a period closes.

Activating Lock Dates in BigTime

We lock timesheets by submission period, and you control that setting in the timesheet customizations area. There, you will see a lock-date editor that looks similar to the one shown here.

To turn on lock dates, just check off the Lock Each Timesheet Period checkbox.  

Grace Periods

If we locked every timesheet period the day after it closed, you could possibly be flooded with requests to enter/submit time for that closed period. To combat this potential problem, we've implemented a grace period feature. Once the grace period expires, your time submission period will then be locked.

For example, if you have your timesheet submission period set to weekly, and the grace period has been set to 10 days, then the weekly period of May 1, 2016 through May 7, 2016, would be closed on May 17, 2016.

Since grace periods might lag over one or more timesheet periods, figuring out the exact date that a time-entry is closed "on or before" can get complicated. To clarify this, we also show the current "lock date" in the system.  

TIP: Lock Dates always fall on period-end dates

Since we lock timesheet periods, your lock date will always fall on a period-ending date. It's best to think of the grace period as the "number of days after the period that we wait to close it" (instead of the number of days before today's date).

Curious how a grace period update will affect your lock date? Change the grace period, click SAVE and let BigTime show you the result.

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Further Reading

Need more details? Once you understand the basics, the articles below will take you a little deeper.