Logging time entries

Freckle is more than a little bit different, in all kinds of wonderful ways that you might not expect. Just getting started? Watch our 90-second video first!

 

Get the most out of Freckle…

…to get the most out of Freckle, take just a few minutes to read this quick-start guide. What you'll learn will save you time everyday!

The Quick Entry box

You log time in Freckle with the blue Quick Entry box. It's available on the top of every page.

The Quick Entry box collapses out of the way when you don't need it. To reveal the Quick Entry box when it's hidden, click the blue Log Time tab. The Quick Entry box is always shown on the Dashboard and Pulse pages by default.

The Quick Entry Box is highly tuned for rapid entry. For example, all the fields are text fields, unlike any other time tracking system we've seen. There's no need to select things in lists if you don't want to, and you can do everything from the comfort of your keyboard.

The time field

The Time field offers smart parsing—so you only have to type the absolute minimum necessary. When you load up the Dashboard or Pulse page, the time field is already focused, so you can start logging time immediately.

What you enter How Freckle understands it
15 15 minutes
15m 15 minutes
15h 15 hours
13 15 minutes*
2 2 hours
6h 6 hours
9-5 8 hours (literally "nine to five"!)
y 2 2 hours for yesterday

Freckle makes intelligent guesses, but when you need to you can override them easily by adding m, h, or d to your entry. There are even more options, including quickly entering dates and basic time calculations.

When you're done, just hit the tab key to jump to the Client or Project field.

*Built-in rounding for your minimum billing increment! The Freckle default is the industry standard of 15 minutes, but you can configure it on a per-project or account basis if you need to.

Client or project field

Enter the project or client you're working for. The field is optional so you can leave it empty, save the entry and decide to assign it to a client or project later.

To create a new project or client you don't have to configure a client and then configure projects under that client. Just type a name! Freckle will create it for you. You can then use that project or client going forward.

Note that not all users are allowed to create new projects. If you need to log time for a project that doesn't exist yet and you can't create new projects, ask an administrator to do it for you.

When you've built up your projects list, you can make use of the field's handy dandy autocomplete.

To autocomplete type the beginning of the name of your client or project, then use your keyboard or mouse to choose one. Hit tab to move to the Tags or Description field.

Tags and description

This field takes tags and descriptive text. Just like the Project or Client field, it's entirely optional. However, to get the most out of Freckle, you'll probably want to tag your entries. Think of the description like a tweet (although Freckle doesn't have a size limit)! The best descriptions are short and to the point, and make use of tags so it's easier to find and group entries later.

To use an existing tag, you can either begin to type the tag and hit tab, or click its name in the list below the field. While autocompleting, you can keep hitting tab to cycle through all possible completions.

To create a new tag, simply enter a word with a hash sign (#) at the beginning. This makes it a hashtag, like in your Twitter or Facebook account.

Tags can be up to 50 characters in length. They can't have any spaces and they can't be all numbers. Try using an underscore "_" or a dash "-" to replace your spaces.

Freckle will highlight your tags as you type, so it's easy to see what is and what isn't a tag. If you see the tag highlighted in yellow, it's a tag that has been used before in Freckle. If the tag is highlighted red, it's new. If you didn't mean to create a new tag, check if you made a typo. If there's a close match, you can hover over the red tag and Freckle will make a replacement suggestion.

Not all users are allowed to create tags (but you can always use existing tags!). Freckle will let you know and allow you to edit your entry, or save your entry with unknown tags converted to plain text.

Tracking unbillable time (or non-billable time, if you're like that) is dead easy with Freckle. Unbillable tags work just like regular tags, but entries with one or more unbillable tags will not be used for invoices. When running reports, unbillable tags are a great way to find out where your time really goes.

To create an unbillable tag, enter it just like a regular new tag and add a star "*" (asterisk) at the end.

Logging the entry

Once you've entered your time, project and description, just press return or click the LOG IT button. If your entry is logged successfully, Freckle will show a quick update on how much time you've logged so far and will clear out the Quick Entry box and focus the time field again so you can log another time entry.

If there was any problem logging the entry (for example you tried to create a new tag but you're not allowed to), Freckle will show a message and highlight the Quick Entry fields that need to be fixed.

And drumroll, here's the result of logging your entry! If you're on the Dashboard it will appear instantly under the Quick Entry box, or if you're on the Pulse page, you'll see the chart for the logged-for day expand.

Congratulations!

Now try logging time with the Freckle Timer.