In a couple of recent consulting engagements, the subject of time tracking has come up. For the organisations that have never required people to report time worked, there is an instinct that it is too much of an imposition on the work force and it would distract from getting the work done. There's an interesting reference to this in this article about Microsoft's use of MS Project from a couple of years ago.
gantthead offsite content
For organisations with a business model for delivering services (as opposed to a pure cost centre model), the idea of recording work done as a means of justifying billing is acceptable and may already be established.
The step to full task work effort recording against a baseline needed for Earned Value calculations can be too big a cultural step for some organisations. This is particularly true for those that already have some form of time recording - typically at the general activity type (vacation, project x, project y, administrative) - using a system that is already integrated into an accounting or payroll system.
One strategy that is often proposed is to use the EPM (Enterprise Project Management) system's task time tracking functionality as a front end to the legacy time reporting system - or vice versa. Designs for this kind of integration requires that key fields are present in the source system for matching records in the target system. It also implies that the administrator(s) of the source system have management processes that are sufficient for data management in both systems.
I'd be interested in readers' experiences and comments on this subject.