We discussed Utilization by Member last week and the pitfalls that can lead to inaccurate tracking. This week, we are sharing how to effectively track utilization and how ConnectSMART can automate your efforts. Without real-time time entry it is impossible to have accurate reporting for SLA metrics or accurate descriptions for work performed, among a host of other issues. It is one thing to know the problem, how about the solution?
As discussed, we began tracking utilization early in our MSP journey and quickly realized the important measurement went deeper. We wanted everyone to be held accountable to his or her own goals. Everyone seemed busy, but we needed to hold everyone accountable at the end of each week. To resolve this quandary we developed the Utilization by Member (over/under) gadget in ConnectSMART. It charts each billable resource with the zero line being their goal. Each bar shows the percentage over or under their specific goals for the week, month, or quarter. No one likes to see their name in red (below the line).
By itself, the public display of this information drives changes in behavior, but we took it two steps further. First, we only count ‘compliant’ time entries toward their billable goals. If the time tracked does not meet our requirements for being tracked during business hours for standard work, or same day for out of business hours work, it simply doesn’t count. To give the measurement teeth, one of our requirements to be eligible for the quarterly performance compensation plan (which can be up to 15% of their salary) is that they must be over their quarterly billable utilization goal. We are not worried so much about missing billable time, but the accuracy lost in after the fact reconstruction of what one did during the day.
To make sure that we don’t lose sight of accurate time tracking on a daily basis we also leverage the Hours by Tech gadget in ConnectSMART to be able to see how time is accounted in real-time. This helps us do a several things: One, if there is a time entry mistake made (like a 40-minute item accidentally being marked as 4 hours) it is immediately visible so it can be questioned and fixed right away. It also provides a manager the ability to review all time daily and in one screen. Instead of running a report or going through individual time sheets, the anomalies can easily be identified, resolved, and coached around without waiting for the weekly time sheet review process.
Tracking utilization in this manner ensures that our data is accurate, our SLA’s are met, and our customer satisfaction and profitability are maximized.
Want more? Please join us and CharTec for a 30-minute hang out on September 23rd to learn how they use ConnectSMART to gauge and grade their business in real time every day. Reserve your spot now!