Top Methods for Tracking Jira Billable Hours for 2023

July 18, 2023

Tracking billable hours is crucial for maintaining transparency, optimizing resource allocation, and ensuring accurate client invoicing. Jira, a widely-used project management tool, offers a range of robust features for task management, team collaboration, and project progress monitoring.

Tracking billable hours is crucial for maintaining transparency, optimizing resource allocation, and ensuring accurate client invoicing. Jira, a widely-used project management tool, offers a range of robust features for task management, team collaboration, and project progress monitoring. However, without effective billable & non-billable hours tracking methods integrated into Jira, project managers may face difficulties in accurately evaluating project costs and ensuring profitability.

Why Monitor Jira Billable Hours?

Tracking billable hours in Jira brings several benefits to businesses:

Resource Management: Tracking billable hours allows project managers to allocate resources effectively and ensure optimal utilization.
Invoicing Accuracy: Accurate time tracking enables businesses to generate precise invoices for clients, reducing discrepancies and payment disputes.
Project Cost Analysis: By tracking billable hours, organizations can analyze project costs, identify areas for improvement, and make informed decisions.
Performance Evaluation: Time-tracking data helps evaluate team and individual performance, enabling organizations to identify high performers and areas for improvement.

Billable vs Non-Billable Hours in Jira

In project management, the distinction between billable & non-billable hours is crucial for several reasons. Billable hours are directly associated with client work and are typically invoiced to the client. On the other hand, non-billable hours encompass internal tasks, such as administrative work, meetings, training, and non-client-related activities.

Tracking non-billable hours in ActivityTimeline

Balancing billable and non-billable hours is essential for maintaining project profitability. While billable hours generate revenue, non-billable hours contribute to project overhead costs. It is crucial to balance these two types of hours to ensure profitability and maintain a healthy margin.

Common Challenges Faced in Tracking Billable Hours within Jira

Managing billable & non-billable hours can pose several challenges for organizations. Here are some common challenges associated with this task:

Tracking and Documentation

Accurately tracking and documenting billable and non-billable hours can be a time-consuming process. It requires meticulous record-keeping and coordination across various projects and team members.

Client Expectations

Clients may have different expectations regarding billable and non-billable activities. Managing client perceptions and effectively communicating the value of non-billable work can be challenging, as some clients may not understand the importance of these activities.

Resource Planning

Balancing billable and non-billable workloads across teams can be complex. Organizations need to ensure that there are enough resources available for billable work while also allocating time for non-billable activities such as training, internal meetings, or administrative tasks.

Billing Transparency

Maintaining transparency in billing clients is essential for client satisfaction and trust. Organizations must clearly distinguish between billable and non-billable activities in their invoices/monthly time reports and provide detailed explanations if necessary.

How to Track Jira Billable Hours Effectively?

In order to track Jira hours in the most efficient way, users need proper worklog management and time-tracking reports - timesheets for teams and individuals.

Jira provides basic time-tracking functionality and custom fields but doesn't have in-built timesheets.

Time tracking in Jira

The great news is that Jira offers a wide variety of add-ons that can help with billable time management, resource planning, and time tracking.

Tracking Time in Jira with ActivityTimeline

ActivityTimeline is a resource planning & time tracking app for Jira that is fully synchronized with Jira. It facilitates task tracking and project time tracking. ActivityTimeline enhances time tracking capabilities. It provides a comprehensive view of all activities within a project, allowing you to monitor progress, identify bottlenecks, and make data-driven decisions. The app offers a user-friendly interface with intuitive timelines, customizable views, and interactive reports.

A planning dashboard with the team/individual timelines shows all of the current & planned activities, projects, and task progress. It also contains workload indicators, that show users' workload.

ActivityTimeline Planning Dashboard

Implementing Best Practices for Billable Hour Tracking in Jira

Accurate Worklog Management

ActivityTimeline makes the logging time process effortless. Users can log their billed and non-billed work directly from the main dashboard. Just choose a task, fulfill the needed information and your work log will be saved immediately!

The app also provides holiday management features, so employees' vacations, sick leaves, holidays, and other types of non-working days will be counted while generating timesheet reports.

Personal Time Tracking

You can find a special Personal Workspace for each user in the app that helps to track only personal tasks and projects. It is also very useful while tracking non-billable work and billable hours. Here users can also log their hours, both billable and non-billable, and see them in one place.

Personal Time Tracking in ActivityTimeline

Moreover, if you need exact time billable worklogs, you can use a special Time Tracker, to calculate the exact time worked on the task. Just click on Timer when you start working and click "Stop" when you're done. The worklog dialogue with the accurate data will appear, click “Save” and that’s it!

Timesheet Reports

ActivityTimeline’s timesheet section is very useful, as it offers various timesheets, including billable timesheets with billable time report data.

You can gain overall progress data with the help of Progress Team Timesheets:

Progress Team Timesheets in ActivityTimeline

You can also use Jira filters and Timesheet Filters while generating reports:

Jira Filters in ActivityTimeline Timesheets

Timeline Team Timesheets are more powerful as you can choose various timesheet templates: user, project, and even epic timesheet templates.

Timeline Team Timesheets in ActivityTimeline
User Timesheets in ActivityTimeline

If you need detailed timesheets type of activity performed, no worries, all are included. Detailed Team Timesheets contain in-depth information about each task:

Billable and non-billable hours in ActivityTimeline Timesheets
Detailed team timesheets in ActivityTimeline

ActivityTimeline allows to log not only billable & non-billable hours. You can also create other worklog categories, which later can be used in timesheet reporting to differentiate the time spent by your employees:

ActivityTimeline worklog categories

It is possible to generate Timeline & Detailed Timesheet reports and group the data by Category so that you can understand how much time is getting consumed by each type of work.

Creating timesheets for different worklog categories in ActivityTimeline


Accurately tracking and managing billable and non-billable hours in Jira is vital for project success, profitability, and client satisfaction. By implementing effective time-tracking processes, utilizing Jira's add-ons with extra time-tracking functionality, and optimizing resource allocation, organizations can achieve better project outcomes and maximize their revenue potential.


Frequently Asked Questions

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