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Automatic Time Tracking with Chrometa

Posted By TJ McCue On March 12, 2012 @ 2:30 pm In Product Reviews | 11 Comments

Automatic time tracking sounds like a beautiful thing for a time-based business owner. It isn’t easy to separate out how you spend your time on projects and client work. This is going to sound odd coming from a long time product reviewer, but I was afraid to install Chrometa and learn that I was under-billing on my projects. It would be embarrassing. This review of Chrometa is for the smart (and more courageous) business owner who sells their service in units of time. The professionals out there who need a simple and effect time tracking solution.

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Chrometa captures your time as you work on your computer – so that you don’t have to. It acts as your personal timekeeper by noting how long you are working in an application, what you are working on, and for how long.  If you are composing an email or working in five different applications (meaning they are open at one time on your system) at the same time, Chrometa knows which one you are actively working in and records the time spent in that program. You don’t have to tell it anything. As an example, it can and does go deeper, too, and shows you how long you spent composing a subject line in Google’s Gmail app.

Here is a sample summary screen to show you how time was recorded.

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I’m pretty bullish on this application now that I’ve seen it working. It will allow me to pull all these snippets of time recorded, by category into an invoice. Talk about time savings. In the settings, I can tell it how to round my time, in minute increments. I can import all this data into QuickBooks, too. Or FreshBooks. Or Basecamp.

If you have a lot of clients and projects and don’t want to manually enter all that data (again) from another application, Chrometa offers a clean import tool, a bulk upload tool, via a CSV-formatted spreadsheet.

What I Like

Well, what’s not to like. This simple app is a time-saver for anyone who struggles with keeping track of time spent on a client project.

  • There’s a Windows, Mac, and Google Chrome plugin for Gmail. That covers 90% of the business user market. Sorry Ubuntu users, but I guess you can make it work via Chrome.
  • Time management without a timer. I know; I’m repeating myself.
What I’d Lke to See
Okay, these are nitpicky items:
  • Since legal types, attorneys, para-legals are heavy time trackers, they have export options to Clio and PCLaw. I’d like to see other industries get some love.
  • I’d like to see a more in-focus image on the home page instead of a fuzzy screenshot (although I think that’s intentional so you focus on the company name and tagline message). And information right there on the home page that says that it includes a 15-day free trial when you click download. Nitpicky, I know.
Chrometa is a sweet application. I highly recommend you take it for a spin and see how much time you’re spending on unbillable tasks or how you’ve been under-billing on client work. This simple, but elegant, tool is a dream for anyone who sells their time and wants to get paid for it, all of it. The basic plan starts at $19/month.
Learn more about Chrometa [3].

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URL to article: http://smallbiztrends.com/2012/03/automatic-time-tracking-chrometa-review.html

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[1] Image: http://smallbiztrends.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/SBT_Chrometa.jpg

[2] Image: http://smallbiztrends.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/SBT_chrometa-summary.jpg

[3] Chrometa: http://www.chrometa.com/