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Sustainable Project Scaling with Effortless Project Cost Monitoring with Toggl Track

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About

Sidetrade is a publicly listed fintech company in the accounts receivable market that helps businesses optimize their Order to Cash process. They were founded in France but have offices in Birmingham, London, Calgary, and Houston.

Results with Toggl Track

  • Confident decisions on project scaling with accurate data on project hours
  • Better resource management: a big-picture overview of how team hours are split between 100+ projects and 100+ clients
Sidetrade team

We didn't want a tool where it took our team a long time to input because our people are really busy. So the UI played a huge part in our decision. Toggl Track was easy to use, ergonomically nice, and easy to implement.

Hesham Zaki, Global Vice President of Projects at Sidetrade

Challenges

Sidetrade provides sophisticated, AI-enhanced software to help businesses secure and accelerate cash flow generation. Their solution is an app that covers every step of the invoice journey, from order to cash collection, analytics and reporting.

One of the key differentiators of their offering is the Order to Cash consulting that comes with the Augmented Cash platform. Each implementation team comprises a project manager, an engineer, a trainer, and a consultant supporting customers worldwide.

“Consulting aspect holds significant importance because we challenge how the customers have been doing things for years,” said Hesham Zaki, Global Vice President of Projects at Sidetrade.

Hesham oversees the implementation teams on a global scale. Each implementation project, which can last from 4 weeks to 6 months, depending on the size of the firm, is priced based on the complexity of the client organization and the software modules that the client has subscribed to.

As Sidetrade began to scale quickly, it became increasingly important to determine whether the project fees accurately reflected the resources the company was investing to implement its solutions.

“Right now, we're proud to be positioned as one of the worldwide leaders by Gartner. Since last year, we've started moving into the US market. We're scaling up and expanding our project portfolio in the North American region. It's essential for us to maintain resource levels,” said Hesham.

Previously, the company focused on gauging team capacity with the primary goals of customer satisfaction and solution adoption.

Realizing the importance of resource optimization, they decided to become more efficient with their time. “Our goal is to streamline our process and reduce task duration to offer our customers the most efficient onboarding experience,” said Hesham.

Despite his managerial position, he wasn't keen on evaluating the productivity of each employee. Instead, he wanted a straightforward approach to monitor project costs.

“We want to ensure accurate cost estimation for our projects. Rather than monitoring our team's daily activities, we have established a level of trust between our employees and us. Hence, we are adopting a project cost-oriented approach.”

Solution

Why Toggl Track? Hesham's team tested several tools. Hesham selected Track as a project cost monitoring solution. What mattered to him was evaluating project profitability and overseeing project budgets. Track fit the needs and the bill: fixed fees follow up for project budgets, billable rates for team members to track against the budget, and bulk creation of projects and clients.

But there was more.

“Maintaining the team's trust was crucial for me, and I didn't want them to feel like I was constantly monitoring their activities like Big Brother. Hence, I preferred a project-oriented tool over an individual-oriented one,” said Hesham.

Screenshot of the project dashboard feature in Toggl Track
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At the same time, Toggl Track was very employee-focused, which was another key point in its favor.

“We didn't want a tool where it took our team a long time to input because our people are really busy,” said Hesham. “We wanted something that would take up to 1-2 minutes daily. So the UI played a huge part in our decision. Toggl Track was easy to use, ergonomically nice, and easy to implement.”

“The integration with Outlook Calendar was very essential for us,” said Hesham. Seeing calendar events directly in Track and duplicating them as time entries saved so much effort.

“The browser extensions are also a huge advantage,” said Hesham. The extension, which integrates into hundreds of work tools, made task switching a breeze.

“Our engineers often work on up to 10 projects a day, but switching between time entries is effortless with the extension. They can easily pause and resume a time entry, for instance, while waiting for a program to compile.”

Hesham's team has been using Toggl Track for a month. He said, "In the upcoming months, we will be able to identify which tasks in our projects require optimization for efficiency as part of our continuous improvement efforts."

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