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"I really like the way you can access your work items from within Outlook. I like the way you can bring up the full work item forms, make edits, and save immediately to TFS. It was great to create new meeting requests or mail messages from the work items."

Lori Lamkin
Product Unit Manager for Team Foundation Server at Microsoft

"These types of products are important to the industry."

Joel Semeniuk
CEO and co-founder of ImagiNET Resources Corp.

"I know of a good number of companies that will love having something like this - getting their timesheet management into TFS (so it can be reported on, especially) will make life a lot easier for them."

James Manning
Software Design Engineer for Visual Studio project at Microsoft

"I like the idea of being able to link work items to e-mails and meetings. I also like that it provides non-technical information workers the option of working with TFS in a more familiar environment. Congratulations to TeamExpand on the release!"

Jason Barile
Principal Test Manager for Visual Studio Team Foundation Server at Microsoft

"TX Chrono, by TeamExpand, allows users to easily track how they are spending their time, store that information in TFS, and make it available for reporting in the warehouse."

Brian Harry
Product Unit Manager for Team Foundation Server at Microsoft

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TFS Timesheet


Outlook Timesheet vs. Excel Timesheet

October 22nd, 2010

Today, I am going to compare Excel and Outlook timesheets and find out whether they are a good fit for comprehensive project time reporting. Here are some differences between an Excel timesheet and an Outlook timesheet:

Interactive Reporting

First of all, an Excel timesheet is a kind of logbook with not so many reporting capabilities, while an Outlook timesheet offers a wide array of interactive time reporting features, such as sending notifications, planning events, setting alerts, and much more.

User Interface

Normally, the number of employees familiar with Excel is smaller than the number of those who use Outlook every day.


Unlike the Excel timesheet interface, the Outlook timesheet interface is easily customized, which helps minimize the time and costs of training. Outlook timesheet can be submitted daily, weekly, monthly, etc. Team members can create Outlook timesheets tied to work items data, which improves the accuracy of billing.

Remote Access

Using Excel timesheets, the team members who work remotely need to upload/download them. With an Outlook timesheet, team members can participate in time reporting and approval processes wherever they are located using Outlook.

Automated Approval

An Outlook timesheet automates the approval of work hours. After a timesheet is submitted, it is automatically e-mailed to the appropriate supervisor. A timesheet can be approved with a click of a button, forwarded to the accounting department for processing, or sent back to the employee for revision. Excel timesheets don’t provide these features.

Management and Control

Outlook timesheets provide a number of tools that simplify the management of the entire time reporting process, including archiving, time compliance, etc. An Outlook timesheet also offers a much higher degree of control, than an Excel timesheet, such as separating billable and non-billable items, setting holidays, marking sick leaves, etc.

Outlook timesheets offer more functionality for time reporting, than Excel timesheets. They simplify project time tracking by offering managers and administrators greater control throughout the time reporting process.

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