Free Employee Timesheet Template for Excel

If you’re still having employees manually record their time on printed out timesheets and then manually entering that information into your payroll system, you’re wasting valuable time and energy.

Ideally, if you’re really interested in saving time and boosting productivity, you’d use an app like When I Work to build the work schedule, track employee time, and communicate with employees. If you’re not ready for that big of a change, start by ditching the paper timesheets for our new timesheet template. We’ve created a free employee timesheet template for Excel that allows your employees to clock in and clock out with a button.

Download the only free excel template for tracking employee time that lets your employees clock in and clock out, tracks employee breaks, and tracks overtime.

Free Employee Timesheet Template for Excel

When you have employees manually recording their time on paper timesheets, you then have to translate all of that information to your payroll system. This is a time-consuming process with no shortage of human errors that can occur. Ultimately, any mistakes made during this process can affect your bottom line and your employee’s pay.

We designed this free employee timesheet template for Excel so your employees can accurately track their time and you can easily transfer that data to your payroll processing system.

Here’s how to use the free employee timesheet template for Excel:

Step 1: Start on the employees tab. Enter all of your employees’ names in a list and it will translate across the workbook.

Step 2: When employees get to work they click on the day under their name and hit the “Clock in/Clock out” button. Then when they leave, they’ll do the same under the “clock out column”.

Step 3: They can also use this to clock in and out for breaks. Simply click the “Break clock out” cell and hit the button. Do the same to clock back in.

One final note: When you download the template you must click “Enable Macros” in order for the clock in and out button to work.

That’s it!

Employees’ time will be totaled on their timesheets—that includes break time and overtime. On the second tab titled “Total hours per emp per week” you can see the weekly totals you need to enter into payroll.

From here you can save a copy of the workbook to maintain the time cards for your records, clear the times on the timesheets, and start again with a new week.

Benefits of a clock in clock out spreadsheet:

  1. Accurate: A clock in/clock out spreadsheet makes it easier to track the exact hours worked by each employee, so they’re paid correctly.
  2. Easy-to-use: A spreadsheet is simple and intuitive, making it easy for employees to clock in and out and for managers to track and review hours.
  3. Cost-effective: There’s no additional hardware or software required to use a spreadsheet.
  4. Customizable: Update your spreadsheet to fit the specific needs of your business—you can add or remove columns, or include different calculations.
  5. Easy-to-access: Store your spreadsheet in the cloud and easily get to it from any device with internet access.
  6. Compliant: A spreadsheet can help to ensure compliance with labor laws by providing accurate records of employee hours and overtime.
  7. Payroll management: Streamline the payroll process by providing accurate and up-to-date records of employee hours.
  8. Scheduling: Help managers to schedule their employees more effectively by giving them access to accurate records of hours worked.

Shortcomings of a clock in clock out spreadsheet: 

  1. Manual entry: This can lead to errors and inaccuracies, especially if employees forget to clock in or out or if they make mistakes while entering their hours.
  2. Security: A spreadsheet may not have built-in security measures to protect sensitive employee data, which can make it vulnerable to hacking or unauthorized access.
  3. Scalability: Handling a large number of employees or complex data is too complex for a simple spreadsheet, making it difficult for businesses to scale their operations.
  4. Reporting capabilities: You’ll miss out on the advanced reporting and analytics capabilities of a specialized software, which can make it difficult for managers to make data-driven decisions.
  5. Integrations: A spreadsheet may not be able to integrate with other systems, such as payroll or accounting software, which can create additional work and inefficiency.
  6. Mobile access: It’s difficult for employees to clock in and out while working remotely or from different locations because spreadsheets are not optimized for mobile devices.
  7. Time tracking capabilities: There’s no capability to track time for specific projects, tasks or activities, making it difficult for managers to understand employee productivity.
  8. Support: Without the support of a dedicated technical team, it’s difficult for businesses to troubleshoot or resolve issues.


Using a free employee timesheet template for Excel can be an effective way to streamline your time tracking and payroll process. It provides an easy-to-use and cost-effective solution for tracking employee hours, with benefits such as accurate tracking, customization, and easy access. However, like any manual system, it also has its limitations such as manual entry errors, limited security, the inability to scale, and more. Ultimately, it’s a matter of finding the right balance that works for your business needs. While this template is a good starting point, it’s also worth considering more advanced solutions such as an app like When I Work.

Other time tracking topics you may be interested in:

Want to skip the template and start using employee time tracking software instead? Start your free trial today!

Ready to stop manually tracking employee time? Start your free 14-day trial of When I Work Time and Attendance!

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