Designed to protect and reassure both you and your clients, your Work Diary acts as a visual record of your hours, showing them both your hours and work-in-progress screenshots. We also use the information in your diary to automatically bill your client(s) each week.

To find your Work Diary

  1. From your home page, hover over the My Jobs tab
  2. Choose the Work Diary option

To log your time

  1. Open the Upwork Desktop App
  2. Choose a contract
  3. Toggle the tracker’s On/Off switch to On
  4. Enter a memo and/or activity

What's the difference between activity label and memo?

A memo is the note you write to describe what you are working on during a session. 

An activity label is something the client creates to tag your time to different types of work, projects, or other trackable items within a single hourly contract. You can select an activity label from a drop down box when you open the memo edit box. Your client can also edit Activities in your Work Diary.

Clients sometimes use activity labels to track their spending on certain types of work, especially if they are working with multiple freelancers on a variety of projects. So, it is important to choose the correct activity label to help your clients keep accurate accounting records.

If you see a dash under Activity in the memo edit box, your client isn’t using the activity labels and you don’t have to enter anything there.

Update Your Work Diary

You can only add, edit, and remove time on an active contract in the current week’s Work Diary. The previous week’s Work Diary cannot be edited after 12 p.m. UTC on Monday. 

  • Only the freelancer or their agency manager can add, remove, or edit time in their Work Diary. Your client can edit your activity labels but not your memos or anything else
  • Every hourly contract has its own Work Diary
  • Only time within the weekly limit on an hourly contract will be billed and included in reports
  • We use 10-minute billing segments, therefore some rounding may occur
  • You can switch the time zone between Mine and UTC to read the information in the way that works best for you
  • You can't edit the Work Diary on a closed contract

To update memos and activity labels

  1. From your home page, hover over the My Jobs tab and select Work Diary
  2. Hover over the screenshots of the time group you want to edit — checkboxes will appear
  3. Check the boxes of the time increments that belong with the memo or activity label that you are going to edit
  4. Once you start checking boxes, Edit and Remove options will appear near the top of the page — choose Edit Activity and Memo
  5. Make the changes you want, then press Save

To update an entire group of screenshots at once

  1. From your home page, hover over the My Jobs tab and select Work Diary 
  2. Find the group of screenshots that belong to the memo you want to edit
  3. Hover over the ellipsis on the upper right side of the group to see the Edit group and Remove group options
  4. Choose the Edit group option
  5. Make the changes you want, then press Save

Note: If you want to use manual time, your client will have to set up the contract to allow it.  They can set up the contract so that manual time is allowed from the start, or they can allow it to be added at certain times.

Reading Your Work Diary

When you use your Upwork Desktop App to log your time, it takes a snapshot six times per hour.  Then we plug your hourly activity and work-in-progress snapshots into the appropriate billing segments in your Work Diary. The app also records your total number of mouse clicks, scroll actions, and keystrokes per segment.
The memo bars in the Work Diary are color-coded to indicate the status of that billing segment. Their color-coding goes as follows:

  • Dark blue: Auto tracked time, billable on hourly contracts
  • Light blue: Manual time, billable on hourly contracts
  • Red: Time over the weekly limit agreed with your client. Not billable.

The row of blue blocks beneath the screenshot is the Activity Meter. It shows the number of minutes out of a 10-minute billing segment that had activity (mouse clicks, scroll actions, and keystrokes).

  • Activity is recorded by Upwork Desktop App and uploaded as auto-tracked time. Manual time does not include activity information
  • Click on the meter for a detailed view, including minute-by-minute activity counts

Antivirus software, firewalls, and system overloads can sometimes prevent the app from tracking your activity properly. If you believe this has happened, you may need to whitelist the app in your antivirus software and firewall. You can also check your available RAM and CPU —  if they are reaching their limits you can try to free up resources by closing other programs.

 

NOTE

You may see different versions of your Work Diary in some places, like when you access it from your contract workroom. We are working to update all Work Diary pages soon.

What’s the difference between an activity label and memo?

A memo is the note you create to describe what you are working on during a session. These are important to add so your client knows what you were working on, and to make sure you qualify for Upwork Payment Protection. If your client is an Enterprise client or on a Plus plan, they can also create activity labels for you to use. Clients sometimes use activity labels to track their spending on certain types of work, especially if they are working with multiple freelancers on a variety of projects. It’s important to choose the correct activity label to help your clients keep accurate accounting records, but they can also edit the label you selected, if needed.

How do I delete part of the time I worked without deleting the whole session?
  1. Go to My JobsWork Diary and select the contract
  2. Find the block of time you want to remove
  3. Hover over the time’s screenshots to see checkboxes, then check the boxes for the time increments you want to remove
  4. Once you check a box, Edit and Remove options will appear near the top of the page, next to total tracked time — choose Remove
Why do I see two different versions of my Work Diary depending on how I get to the diary?

We are in the process of updating all the Work Diary views. For a few months, you may see different versions depending on how you access your diary. For now, you can use either version, but we recommend becoming familiar with the updated version.

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