It’s Monday morning. You’ve gathered up the timecards from the rack and toss them aside. What a pain! Let’s face it, calculating a bunch of timecards is not up there with our favorite things to do every week! Here’s a better way…

First comes the hardest change. Military time. I hear you groaning out there but trust me, you’ll learn to love it. Military time is based on the 24 hours of a day, a “regular” clock spins twice around the same 12 hour face, and forces us to specify either “AM” or “PM” all the time so people know what we’re talking about. The AM time in military time works exactly the same. The part that is different is the after-noon time; the fact that 1:00 PM is now called 13.0 (pronounced thirteen hundred, or thirteen, point-zero).

You will need to either get a new time clock if yours is mechanical or have re-programmed the one you have if it’s electronic, to punch out military time. Cost? How much time are you wasting now? How many errors do you have to go back and correct? How much does that cost? It’s time to simplify your life!

The next change simplifies further by using the decimal system for the fractions of an hour. Instead of the exact time in minutes, which are of coarse, 1/60th of an hour, and  makes figuring the time-elapsed very confusing, make your time clock use 10th’s of an hour instead. The clock will round down to the nearest tenth of an hour. A tenth of an hour is 6 minutes, so 0.1 equals 6 minutes, 0.2 (or two-tenths) equals 12 minutes, 0.5 is 30 minutes or a half hour, and so forth. Examples: 7:00 AM becomes 7.0,  10:18 AM becomes 10.3, 3:30 PM becomes 15.5,  5:07 PM becomes 17.1,  8:46 PM becomes 20.7. Since all you need to remember is that each 10th equals 6 minutes, you will know that 9.9 must be 6 minutes before 10 and 9.8 must be about 12 minutes before 10. It’s easier for you when everything is expressed in tenths (6 minute increments).

Pitfall: It is a very common mistake for people to confuse the minutes with tenths when they attempt to convert in their head, manually. This is why you should get a time clock and let it do the work! People think 9:45 AM, and convert that to 9.45. Wrong! 0.45 is a little less than a half an hour. The correct answer is 9.75, or three-fourths of an hour.

Now we get to the good part that makes your life a breeze. To figure time, all you have to do is subtract the little number from the big number. If someone worked 7:36 AM until 3:30 PM with ½ hour for lunch, you are doing this; 15.5 – 7.6 = 7.9, then deduct lunch,    -0.5 = 7.4. You see? It become almost effortless and it also becomes error-free.

P.S. Setting up QuickBooks using Van Cleve, Inc. instead of doing it yourself with the very limited help for the program itself will SAVE MONEY by having it setup for smooth and fast bookkeeping. Going back and fixing an old QB file is very time-consuming and wasteful. You aren’t saving by skimping on having a professional set it up right from the start. I’ve been using QB since 1997, continuously. Call 814-790-4992 or email bruce@VanCleveInc.com

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