The time tracker is one of todo.vu’s key features – and its billing features another. In fact, it is the combination of the two features in the one platform that really sets todo.vu apart as an innovative productivity tool for teams and freelancers.
While todo.vu’s time tracker allows you to track and record the time you spend on tasks, its billing features ensure that that time is tracked and recorded at a specific charge-out rate.
This means that you can see at a glance exactly how long different activities took, as well as how much they cost and earnt you, to put it simply. You can see this data within specific contexts: i.e., for a specified date range, team member, project, and so on.
Plus, you can create beautiful, concise billing reports to attach as a URL to your invoices.
Here is everything you need to know about time billing in todo.vu.
Depending on your user access level, the billing features and functions mentioned in this guide may not be available to you.
Administration users and Workspace Owners by default have full access to all features and functions; however, Staff users will have limited access.
The Billing Dashboard
Navigate to your Billing Dashboard in todo.vu by selecting Billing from the left-hand sidebar of your Workspace.
On your Workspace’s Billing Dashboard, you will see a complete visual overview of your business’ unbilled, billed, non-billable and draft billed hours for a date range that dates back to the very first time you started using todo.vu.
To extend the graph beyond the default view, simply click your mouse and drag it right or left across the timeline.
You will also see a list of your clients down the left-hand side of the page. If you select a specific client from this list, you will open a detailed view of that client’s unbilled and non-billable hours. This is where you can create your Billing reports, but more on these below.
Understand the Billing timeline
The first graph at the top of your Billing Dashboard is the Billing timeline. This graph charts your business’ billing progress for any date range you choose.
You will notice various colours in the chart.
The colours represent:
- Blue: Unbilled time – This is the time for which a billing report has not yet been created.
- Red: Draft billed time – This is the time for which a billing report draft has been created but not yet published.
- Green: Billed time – This is the time for which a billing report has been created and published.
- Purple: Non-billable – This is the time spent on tasks which are not billable to a client, such as in-house tasks.
Understand Unbilled time
Beneath the Billing timeline, you will see your business’s ‘Unbilled time’ data, as it relates to your clients, represented in a pie chart.
This visual is designed to give you a quick overview of the client work you have yet to bill for.
You can delve deeper into this data with just a few clicks, like so:
Unbilled time graph – customise your view
You can delve deeper into your data on your ‘Unbilled time’ pie graph.
For example, select any of your clients in your client list next to the graph (or select a wedge in the pie graph, which is connected by colour and number to a client in the client list). This will reveal a list of projects for that selected client which have the greatest amount of unbilled time logged.
Then, click on any project in that project list, or on any wedge in the graph, to reveal a list of tasks for that selected project which have the greatest amount of unbilled time logged.
Drilling down even further, you can then select any task in that task list, or on any wedge in the graph, to reveal which staff user has logged the greatest amount of unbilled time for that selected task.
Then, selecting that user, you can see exactly how much unbilled time they have logged for that selected task.
Reset your pie graph by selecting ‘Unbilled time’ from the breadcrumbs just above the pie graph. Or, like in our example below, you can return to any graph view by selecting the applicable view from the breadcrumbs.
You can also click the centre of the pie graph to go back one view. For example, if you are in a specific project, when you click on the centre of the pie chart, you will be taken back to the client to which that project belongs.
You can also go directly to a client, project or a task, or to a client’s ‘Unbilled time’ page, from this graph view; simply select the links that update while you are in different graph views underneath the pie graph.
Understand Draft bills and Top clients
Below your ‘Unbilled time’ pie graph, you will see a column with your ‘Draft bills’ and a column with data on your ‘Top clients’.
These are quick reference tools. ‘Draft bills’ reminds you of any outstanding billing reports which have not yet been published, and ‘Top clients’ gives you an easy overview of which client you have billed the highest dollar amount to in the previous 12 months.
Create a Billing report
Now, you are ready to invoice your clients for your time. Here’s how to create an itemised, digital Billing report in todo.vu that displays every detail, which you can attach as a link to your invoices and provide your clients with exceptional and transparent service.
Select the client you would like to bill
Head back to your Billing Dashboard. Select from the list of clients on the left-hand side of the page the client you would like to invoice, and thus need to create a Billing report for. This will take you to a new page within your Workspace, the ‘Unbilled time’ page, where your logged time is automatically stored.
(This page is where you will always manage your logged time: where you will either create Billing reports, or move logged time to the Non-billable section of the page to keep track of these hours, too.)
Note that you can also navigate to this same page from within the ‘Unbilled time’ graph, as explained above, by clicking the link beneath the graph that says ‘Bill time’ while in that graph’s project view.
Filter to prepare your billing report
Once on the ‘Unbilled time’ page in todo.vu, you can filter your time entries to prepare your new Billing report for a specific context.
That is, you can choose to filter your unbilled hours corresponding to a:
- Date range
- Staff user, or
However, you might like to create a billing report without these filters!
Filter by Label, User or date range
Filter by Label – With the label icon in the top right-hand side of your Workspace, you can filter your primary list of unbilled time by a specific label, and create a billing report explicitly for any number of different labels.
For example, you may want to create billing reports separately for specific business activities, such as those tasks labelled “Out of Scope” or “Support”.
Filter by User – With the User filter, you can filter your primary list of unbilled time by a specific team member, and create a billing report explicity for hours logged by that particular user.
Filter by date range – With the date range selector, you can filter your primary list of unbilled time for a specific date range. Maybe you would like to look at only the last month’s unbilled hours, or maybe you would like to look at the entire financial year’s non-billable hours. (More on that in the note below.)
How? Click on the date range at the top right of the page to expand the tool and adjust it to your desired date. You will see the letters ‘D’, ‘W’ and ‘M’ above your graph on the right-hand side. These stand for:
These letters determine the length by which you can move your date range selector, which is the rectangular tool highlighted in orange.
When you select ‘D’, you are selecting ‘Snap to day’, which means you will be able to select a range down to the nearest day. If you select ‘M’, you are selecting ‘Snap to month’, which allows you to select a range in monthly intervals.
You can apply more than one filter to your primary list of unbilled time, for example, you can filter your list to display hours logged by a specific team member, under a specific Label, for a specific date range.
Just as you can apply these filters to display your unbilled hours for a specific context, so too can you apply them to display your non-billable hours for a certain context.
Simply select the ‘Non-billable’ option from the left-hand side of your Workspace, under ‘Not included in report’. Then apply the filters just as you would for your unbilled hours.
Add items to your Billing report
Once you have filtered your list of unbilled time, it is time to create your Billing report!
Now, let’s take a closer look at the information displayed on your ‘Unbilled time’ page, as this information may also be published on your Billing report.
This information includes:
- Project name
- Task name and task number
- Task notes
- Total time logged
- Total time logged on each project and each task
- Billing rates
- Total monetary value logged on each task
- Total monetary value logged for the entire Billing report.
Before you add any of these items to your new Billing report, you have the option to adjust or refine them here. Click on any time entry, task or project, and you will see the following options in a pop-up bar at the bottom of your screen:
- Add to new report
- Change rate
- Change task
If you select:
- “Add to new report”
Everything you have selected will be moved to a new draft Billing report.
- “Change rate”
You will be given the option to change the charge-out rate for every time entry that you have selected.
- “Change task”
You will be given the option to move every time entry you have selected to a new Task.
Everything you have selected will move to Non-billable; you will not be able to move these time entries to a new Billing report, unless you mark them as Billable once again from within the ‘Non-billable’ section of the page. (Click on ‘Non-billable’ within left-hand column of the ‘Unbilled time’ page to get to the ‘Non-billable’ section.)
If you select a Project from your Unbilled time page, all tasks and time entries connected to (and displayed underneath) this Project will automatically be selected, too. Any edits you make; i.e., to change a rate or mark as non-billable, will be made in bulk to everything selected.
Similarly, if you select a task, all time entries connected to that task will automatically be selected and any edits made in bulk.
You can deselect certain tasks and time entries by clicking on them once more.
You can also edit a time entry note from the ‘Unbilled time’ page; click on the pencil icon that appears on the left when you hover over a time entry, which will open a separate editor tool where you can make your edits.
Publish Billing report
Once you have added all the required information to your draft Billing report, select that report from the left-hand column to open it.
Note: All of your Billing reports, both published and draft, will be stored here; your draft Billing reports will be represented with a red icon, and your published reports with a green icon.
Now, you can add a Billing report name at the top, and an External invoice ID to the left of the Billing report name for your own referencing purposes.
As long as your Billing report is in draft, you can select and adjust individual time entries or tasks; for example, to remove an entry from the report, change a billing rate, or move an entry to Non-billable.
Click on ‘Publish report’ at the top right corner of your Workspace when you are satisfied with your report.
You will now see a clear, concise and reader-friendly Billing report that you can share with your clients.
You can do this by copying the link above the report, and adding it as a link on your invoice.
Congratulations – You have created a new Billing report!
Edit published Billing report
You may want to add more details to your Billing report than what is displayed by default. For example, you might want to add a Billing report footer to explain your payment terms, or you may want to update how your logo looks on your reports (though this option is exclusive to Business Time subscribers!).
You might simply want to update your Billing report’s name.
To make any of these changes, simply select the cog icon at the top right hand-side of your published Billing report.
There are limitations to what you can edit from within the Billing report settings. For example, though you can choose to omit certain details on your Billing report, such as Task IDs or the costs associated with each time entry, you cannot make any changes to the task or time entry details themselves through these settings.
If you need to make changes to these details, such as change the billing rate of a time entry or connect a time entry to a different Task, you will have to select ‘Retract’ at the top right corner of your published Billing report page, make these changes to the report as it is in draft mode again, and publish the report once more.
All edits to Billing reports, either made by retracting the report or through the Billing report’s settings, happen in real-time.
That means even if you have already sent a link to a Billing report to a client, and need to edit that Billing report, you can still do so and the client will see the updated report through the same initial link.