Automatic time tracking vs. manual time tracking

Introduction

This article explains how automatic time tracking works and the difference between automatic and manual time tracking.

Automatic time tracking can be enabled in the global settings. To do so:

  1. Select ConfigurationSettingsProjectsTime tracking (administrative privileges required!).

  2. Select the Automatic time tracking option.

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Manual tracking can be enabled in the same global settings. To do so:

  1. Select ConfigurationSettingsProjectsTime tracking (administrative privileges required!).

  2. From the Enable manual time tracking for dropdown, select the user roles that are permitted to enter times: just Project managers or Project managers and Linguists.

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Automatic time tracking mechanism

If automatic time tracking is enabled, time tracking starts once the Linguist activates a segment in edit mode, in XTM Workbench. There is a limit of 5 minutes per activity in a particular segment and any additional time spent when the segment is active is not counted. Once the Linguist leaves the active segment, time tracking starts from zero.

Example scenario:

  1. The Linguist enters segment A and translates in it for 2 minutes.

  2. The Linguist enters segment B. The time for segment A is saved as 2 minutes.

  3. The Linguist stays in segment B for 8 minutes. The time counted stops after 5 minutes.

  4. The Linguist goes back to segment A and stays active there for 1 more minute. The time counted for Segment A is increased from two minutes to three minutes .

  5. The Linguist closes XTM Workbench.

  6. The total automatically counted time in XTM Workbench was 8 minutes.

If the Linguist makes no changes or switches between tabs, this does not stop the counter. Also, automatic time tracking has no impact on cost generation. It only counts the time spent in XTM Workbench and the results can be viewed in a project’s Statistics. To see them, select Project EditorStatistics → (select a source file) → DATATranslation time [hh:mm:ss]].

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Manual time tracking mechanism

Once manual time tracking is enabled, you can enable the setting shown below at project level. To do so, in the Workflow editor for a particular project:

  1. Select the project’s Workflow tab.

  2. In the Workflow tab screen, find the workflow step in which you want the time to be counted.

  3. Under the workflow step, select the Calculate costs based on the manual time option.

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Then, an entry box will be displayed next to that step, in which you can enter the time:

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You can now generate project costs. To do so, select Project EditorEstimatesCostsGenerate costs based on.
If there is no time tracking entry has been made manually, the costs might be affected when you choose one of the options below when you generate costs for a particular project:

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First of all, XTM Cloud checks whether manual time tracking is enabled. It then fetches the time entered by a Linguist and then, finally, the Linguist’s rate card if the Linguist has entered a value for the Price per hour.

  • If the Price per hour is set in the rate card, and the time is entered in the project’s workflow, the costs will be generated based on the manual time.

  • If the Price per hour is set in the rate card and the checkbox for calculating costs based on manual time is selected, but the time has not been entered manually, XTM Cloud will display a warning message.

There is also a workaround, if such an issue occurs:

  1. Select Project EditorEstimatesCosts.

  2. Select the Use zeros for missing time checkbox.

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Good to know!

Currently, a report containing both manual and automatic time spent by a Linguist is not available in XTM Cloud. All available reports that are based on manually entered time are listed in Costs & Metrics reports.