Why Timesheets Matter When Optimising Your Fleet

Regardless of the size of your fleet, properly documenting your employees’ working hours is a small but crucial element. Let’s talk about why.
digitising timesheet template, better fleet management

Whether you operate a small or large company fleet, tracking and monitoring employee hours with a driver timesheet template is essential.

In this article, we talk about driving rules, the importance of time tracking, and why fleet management software is an effective tool for tracking employee hours. This article also includes a downloadable driver timesheet template you can customise for your needs.

Get a free timesheet template here

What Is a Timesheet and Why Is It Important?

A timesheet is a data table used to track the time employees worked during a certain period. Organisations use driver timesheet templates to record the time a particular employee spent on tasks such as driving the company car, working on a project, or meeting clients.

In the past, most businesses relied on paper and spreadsheet timesheets. Nowadays, more innovative solutions in the form of digital and online timesheet software are the predominant methods of tracking employee work hours. 

A timesheet template

Effective time tracking can improve payroll processing and helps managers get accurate records of the duration of business travels. Timesheets can also improve fleet management budget, track the duration of trips, and determine the time required to complete tasks.

Get A Free Driver Timesheet Template:

Driving Hour Rules

A driver keeping to timesheet template rules

To get the best out of your time tracking software, it is important for your timesheet templates to have provisions for EU and British driving hours rules. Below is a summary of the driving rules based on the main EU rules:

  • Drivers are allowed to drive a maximum of 9 hours in a day. This is extendable to 10 hours twice a week.
  • Maximum of 56 hours of driving in a week.
  • Drivers must not exceed 90 hours of driving in any two consecutive weeks.
  • Drivers are entitled to at least 11 hours of rest every day and 45 hours of unbroken rest period every week.
  • After driving for 4 hours 30 minutes, drivers must take a break or breaks of at least 45 minutes. Drivers must also take a weekly rest after six consecutive 24-hour work periods.

Read more: HGV Driving Hours

Why Is It Important to Have a Digital Timesheet to Help Track Employee Driving Hours?

Tracking time allows you to calculate workers’ pay and have accurate records of business trips. However, using paper-based timesheets is not the most efficient way to track employee work hours. A digital timesheet tool provides the most efficient way to keep track of time in your fleet. Here are some benefits of using a digital timesheet template:


Reduced Time Wastage

Electronic timesheets provide insightful data points that help fleet managers identify tasks that take time and how to reduce delays. This improves productivity, reduces cost, and enhances operational efficiency.

Automated Billing and Easier Payroll Processing

If you bill clients by the hour, digitised timesheet software can help automate the billing process. Most time tracking products come with automated billing and invoicing features, helping save time and creating a seamless business experience for clients. Timesheet software can also make payroll processing easier for workers paid hourly since it provides an accurate record of their work hours.

Improved Billing Accuracy

Digitised timesheets can also improve the accuracy of your billing system since they provide real-time information on the time required to complete tasks. You can even share the information with clients instantly once tasks are completed.

Improved Efficiency

Timesheets are powerful tools for assessing employee performance and improving effectiveness. When you track the time to complete tasks, you can identify employees who excel in specific roles and those that require more training. This allows the company to identify the strengths and weaknesses of individual employees and help them improve their results.

Read more: How Lack Of Technology Is Stunting The Service Industry

How Does a Fleet Tracking System Help Monitor Driving Hours and Timesheets?

Employees looking at a timesheet template

Timesheet tools such as Vimcar’s Fleet Tracking System are ideal for monitoring driving hours. Why? Vimcar’s Fleet Geo software can track every route taken in a company car. This includes miles driven, length of the drive, and any breaks or stops taken during the trip. This data can then be easily exported so that employers can know for a fact the specific work hour of their drivers.

Getting a Free Driver Timesheet Template

Timesheets are vital for recording the work hours of drivers. Vimcar’s user-friendly fleet management software provides a powerful suite of tools to provide your company with fleet vehicle route information, including mileage per trip, stops, idle times, and more. With Vimcar’s product, fleet managers have a versatile tool for proper monitoring of driving hours.

You can download our timesheet template above adapt it for your company’s needs.

Timesheet Templates And Driving Rules | The Best Way To Escape Fines

Driver driving a car and using a timesheet

The biggest problem most fleet managers and operators deal with in Great Britain is driving time violations. All thanks to timesheet templates, they can now stop the offences before occurrence.

Using Driver Timesheet Templates To Follow Driving Time Rules

According to the UK’s Driver and Vehicle’s Standards Agency (DVSA), almost a quarter of injuries obtained from accidents involving lorries and commercial vehicles are fatal. Similarly, about 40% of sleep-related accidents on most British roads involve commercial vehicles. Due to these life-threatening facts, the DVSA enacted driving-hours laws to prevent tired driving and minimize road fatalities. Going against the rules attract penalties that can put both the driver and the fleet managers at risk of prohibition and prosecution.

Car on a road

The rules impose mandatory hourly, daily, weekly, and bi-weekly rest periods and breaks for the drivers. As a result, drivers and fleet executives have the task of recording and keeping the timesheet template filled in order to present it to the enforcement officer for approval.

The Mandatory Driving-Hour Limits

Sticking to timesheet requirements ensures good health for the drivers and is also a sure way to keep the passengers and loads in the vehicle safe. According to DVSA, a driver must undertake the following breaks and rest periods while on the road.

Daily Driving Hours

A driver is allowed nine driving hours on the road every day from the time they start driving. Within the nine hours, the driver must take a mandatory 45 minutes-break after every four-and-a-half-hour drive. The driver can break down the breaks into 15 and 30 minutes at will. On exception, the law allows the vehicle operator to extend the driving hours from nine to ten only twice weekly.

Weekly Driving Hours

The maximum duration a driver can keep moving the vehicle, within a fixed week is 56 hours. According to the laws, a fixed week starts from Monday at 00:00hours and ends on the following Sunday at 24:00hours.

Bi-Weekly Driving Hours & Timesheets

For two weeks, the maximum driving hours for one commercial driver vehicle is 90 hours. At will, the driver can split the duration evenly within the two weeks, or go by 56 hour week one, and 34 hours week two.

Mandatory Rest Periods

Resting on a road

The law states that a driver must take a mandatory rest period every day. During the resting hours, the driver must not move the vehicle, or involve in any other work, including offloading, loading, maintaining or inspection of the automobile. The law states that a driver must take a mandatory 11 hours rest every 24-hour.

However, the rule allows you to reduce the rest period up to nine hours, for only three times a week, provided you can make up for the time the following week. Similarly, you can also split the period, but in this case, it has to be 12 hours. If you break the rest period, the first period must take three hours while the second duration has to be nine hours.

Read more: What is fleet insurance?

Breaking The Driving Hour Rules & Not using Timesheet Templates

Breaching of the driving-hour rules can cause fines from as little as £ 300 to as much as £5000 depending on the complexity of your offence. In more severe instances, the violations can attract prohibition of the vehicle for a specified or unspecified duration, prosecution of the driver and fleet operators, license referral to traffic commissioner, or both. These infringements can put both the driver’s and operator’s livelihoods at risk since their licenses can also be revoked.

Read more: Trackers for Cars

How Can Driver Timesheet Templates Help You Avoid The Violations?

Fines from not having used timesheets correectly

The best asset you can have as a fleet manager is the power to stop the violations before they occur. While you may have the goodwill, it’s normal that your ability may be limited considering the analogue tachograph charts. However, the new digital driver timesheet templates can help you notice any misconduct from any of your drivers, track all their involvements and locations, and stop them before they [put you at any risk.

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