Time tracking for work items

Use the time tracking feature to record time for a work item for each day. After you complete a task, you can know which activities you worked on and the amount of time that you worked on each activity. You can also refer to time records that were entered earlier. You can control the synchronization of the time entries on the Time Tracking tab with the value in the Time Spent field.

Time codes for work items

In the work item editor, you can enter the number of hours per day that you spend on a work item. You can associate each time entry with one or more time codes. Time codes are defined categories against which you can record time for different activities of a task. For example, you might organize your regular work into these categories: development, review, and testing. If you have the required permission, you can add or delete time codes in the project area editor.

The Quick Information section displays the weeks for which time is entered for a work item. The total number of hours that are entered for a week and the total number of hours that are entered for a work item are also displayed in the Quick Information section. To access the time entries, click a specific week.

Remember: To enter time for a work item, you must be the owner of that work item. For example, in a work item that you own, you enter time entries. Later, the ownership of the work item is assigned to another person. You can still edit your time entries, but cannot add new entries to the week or new rows on the Time Tracking tab. If multiple owners enter time in a work item, their names are displayed against their entries.

Synchronized time entries

You can control the synchronization of the time entries on the Time Tracking tab with the value in the Time Spent field. By default, in the Formal Project Management process template when you enter time for a work item on the Time Tracking tab, that value is reflected in the Time Spent field. If you disable the synchronization option, the values in the Time Tracking tab and the Time Spent field become independent. If the option to synchronize time is enabled in the middle of a project, the time spent values are overwritten by the time tracking values.

Scenario 1: Tracking time for one owner

The following examples illustrate the different scenarios of tracking time:

The project lead assigns a work item of type Defect named "Unable to enter time in time tracking" to a developer. The developer writes a piece of code to resolve the defect and then reviews and tests the code. On the Time Tracking tab, the developer records 4 hours against the Development time code, 2 hours against the Review time code, and 2 hours against the Testing time code for that day. The recorded time is displayed in three separate rows against the time codes under the developer's name on the Time Tracking tab.

Scenario 2: Tracking time for multiple owners

Week 1: The project lead assigns a work item of type Task named "Enable time synchronization" to a developer.

  • On Monday, the developer spends 8 hours on the work item, records the time, and assigns the ownership of the work item to the tester.
  • On Tuesday, the tester spends 4 hours, records the time and reassigns ownership of the work item to the developer with review comments.
  • On Thursday, the developer spends 6 hours on the work item to incorporate the review comments and records the time.

Week 2: On Monday, the developer records 7 hours and completes the "Enable time synchronization" work item.

On the Time Tracking tab:
  • The total number of hours spent on the work item for a specific week (8+4+6=18) is displayed in the Week Total column.
  • The total number of hours spent on the work item (week 1+ week 2 = 25 hours) is displayed in the Total column.
As the owner of the "Enable time synchronization" work item, the developer cannot edit the time entry of the tester or add new entries for the tester on the Time Tracking tab.

The names of the different work item owners are displayed against their time entries.


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