What’s the difference between HH:MM and Decimal time display?

Your timesheets can be set to display time in either HH:MM or Decimal format. This is an account-wide setting and will show for every team member in the account. 

Administrators can configure this by going to Settings (top right) and clicking Edit Preferences to select a Time Display.

  • HH:MM format will show 2 hours and 15 minutes as 2:15:
  • Decimal format will show 2 hours and 15 minutes as 2.25:Decimal.jpg

Why doesn't the format of my time entries on my timesheet match what I see in my reports?

You may notice that a time entry on your timesheet shows 1:15, but in a report, it shows as 1.25. 

This is because even if your account's Time Display is set to HH:MM, this format is only used on your team's timesheets.

In every other section of Harvest—Time Reports, Detailed Time Reports, Project Analysis pages, people's profiles, invoices, and estimates—time is displayed as a decimal. 

Harvest always uses decimals outside of timesheets for a couple of reasons: to show a deeper level of precision in your timekeeping, and so that hours can be easily multiplied by billable rates.

You can convert the decimal portion to minutes by multiplying the decimal amount by 60 minutes. For example, if you multiply .25 hours x 60 minutes, you get 15 minutes—the :15 you see in HH:MM format.

Here's another easy example for recognizing this conversion: 2.50 hours is 2 1/2 hours, or 2 hours and 30 minutes. And if you multiply .5 x 60, you also get 30.

When I multiply my time entry's decimal by 60, the result still doesn't match the number of minutes in my time entry. Why not?

Some amounts don't convert as cleanly from HH:MM to decimal format due to repeating decimals. For example, 10 minutes converts to 0.166666667, which is stored in our database as 0.17 since Harvest only displays two decimal places in reports and timesheets. When .17 is converted back to minutes by multiplying it by 60, though, you get 10.2 minutes instead of 10.

As another example, 20 minutes is 0.333333333 of an hour and is stored as .33 hours. When Harvest displays a 20-minute timer, we multiply .33 by 60 minutes to get 19.8 minutes. We then round that up to 20 minutes for HH:MM format. If you have three 20-minute entries added together in a day, the total is .99 of an hour— or 59.4 minutes—which gets rounded down to 59 minutes in HH:MM.

So, if you see a slight difference between the HH:MM total on your timesheet and the decimal total in your reports, don’t worry—the decimal information is precise, and the slight difference due to rounding will only be displayed on the timesheet—not on your invoices, or anywhere else. If you have any questions or concerns about your time, though, feel free to contact us.

I want everything to be uniform throughout my account. How can I change my timesheet's settings to show decimal time?

If you’re an Administrator and would like to switch your timesheets to display in Decimal instead of HH:MM format, you can follow these steps:

  1. Click Settings (upper right corner).
  2. Click Edit Preferences.
  3. In the Time Display section, choose Decimal.
  4. Click Save Preferences to save the change.

Note: This will change the timesheet display settings for every team member in the account.

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