Decimal Hours Converter
Do you need help converting employee hours and minutes to decimal time for the sake of payroll? All those decimals can look confusing. Our time-to-decimal calculator is here to help you.
Use it to turn time into decimals in an instant.
Keeping track of how much time your staff members spend on a project is essential for payroll management.
To keep a record of the time your employees spend on such projects, you can use a time-tracking system that will help you get all the hours in a regular format — HH:MM:SS. However, proper payroll calculation sometimes requires converting working hours to decimals.
In this blog post, we’ll help you convert working hours to decimal time, and you’ll also learn:
- What the decimal time system is and when to use it,
- How the decimal time system was invented,
- Example chart of minutes converted to decimals,
- What a time-to-decimal calculator is and how to use it, and
- Fun facts about using the decimal time system.
So, let’s find out what the decimal time system is and why it is used.
What is the decimal time format and when to use it?
First of all, let’s make a distinction between the decimal and conventional format for displaying time.
The conventional time format is represented in the hours and minutes format.
For example, 5:30 is pronounced as ‘’five hours and thirty minutes’’ which implies that there are:
- Five periods of sixty minutes (an hour), and
- One period of thirty minutes.
On the other hand, the decimal hours format represents time as regular decimal numbers.
Let’s explain this further using the aforementioned example, by converting 5:30 to decimal time.
In the decimal format, 30 minutes is represented as ‘0.5’ since 30 minutes is actually half an hour.
Here’s the equation:
5 hours = 5.0 in decimal time
30 minutes = 0.5 in decimal time
Therefore, 5:30 equals 5.5 in the decimal time format (5 + 0.5).
Now, if you’re wondering who uses the decimal hours format, this system is particularly beneficial for accountants. Accountants use decimal hours for calculating payroll and how much time employees have spent doing a particular project.
Let’s move on to a brief history class — we’ll go back in time and learn how the decimal time format was invented.
How the decimal time system was invented
The decimal time system was first introduced by the French as the sign of breaking connections with tradition. Back then, it was known as the French Revolutionary Time and it started being used on November 24, 1793, during the French Revolution.
Now, how did this time system look like? This is how the French decimal time was divided:
- A day consisted of 10 hours,
- An hour consisted of 100 minutes, and
- A minute consisted of 100 seconds.
Basically, one decimal hour was equivalent to 2 hours plus 24 minutes in conventional time. Therefore, counting time was made straightforward, for example:
- Noon was at 5 o’clock — since the entire day included 10 hours and noon is in the middle,
- The day was 40% over at the end of the fourth hour (or 9 hours and 36 minutes in conventional time), and
- The day was 80% over at the end of the eight hour (or 19 hours and 12 minutes in conventional time).
This method of calculating time proved very inconvenient and unpopular. That’s why the French stopped using it after only 17 months — on April 7, 1795.
And that’s when you would think that the French would give up on this idea for good.
However, you’d be wrong. In 1897, the French tried to implement the decimal time system again.
This is what the Commission de Décimalisation du Temps proposed:
- A day should consist of 24 hours,
- An hour should consist of 100 minutes, and
- A minute should have 100 seconds.
Like the previous one, this proposal failed in 1900.
Nowadays, accountants all over the world use decimal time system to calculate payroll for employees. And, for that reason, the decimal time system was brought back into use.
Minutes to decimal hours conversion chart
Now that you’re familiar with the history of the decimal time system, let’s see how exactly to convert minutes to decimal time.
To convert time into decimal format, you need to divide minutes by 60.
The decimals are rounded, since decimal hours show only two decimal places.
For example, 26 minutes divided by 60 equals 0.433333. The repeating number 3 is rounded, so the result is 0.43.
Let’s look at an example chart for converting minutes to decimal hours.
What is a time-to-decimal calculator and how to use it?
A time-to-decimal calculator is a tool that will come in handy when you need to quickly convert your employee's hours and minutes into decimals. In turn, this will help you efficiently determine payroll hours.
Using our time-to-decimal calculator is straightforward — there are just a couple of steps you need to complete:
- Step #1: Add the working hours in the following format HH:MM:SS, and
- Step #2: Click the CONVERT button.
The calculator will display the results in decimal format.
Now, let’s take a look at how you can use a time-to-decimal calculator. We’ll go through two examples:
- Converting employee time to decimal time, and
- Calculating employee pay.
How to convert employee time to decimal time using the time-to-decimal calculator?
You need to understand how employee hours are converted into decimal time if you're going to calculate employee pay.
For payroll purposes, minutes are easily converted to decimals. As we already established, all you have to do is divide the number of minutes by 60.
For example — your employee worked 25 hours and 35 minutes per week.
Here's how to do the calculation:
35 / 60 = 0.58
Therefore, your employee worked 25.58 hours.
Luckily, with a little help from our calculator, this will be calculated automatically.
Converting employee time to decimal time helps you figure out the amount you need to pay your staff, which we’ll cover in the following lines.
How to calculate employee pay using the time-to-decimal calculator?
To calculate how much you should pay your staff, add the employee's hourly rate to the time in decimal hours to determine their gross pay.
For example, your employee worked 25.58 hours (as mentioned in the above example), and their hourly rate is $10.00. To get their total gross pay, multiply your employee's hourly rate by their total hours worked.
Here's the formula:
Hourly rate x total hours worked
$10.00 X 25.58 hours = $255.80
Therefore, the employee’s gross pay equals $255.80.
If you don’t want to deal with such calculations, you can use our time-to-decimal calculator. Just enter the time values in hours and minutes and hourly rate, and let the calculator do the work for you — you’ll have your employees’ working time expressed in decimals in an instant.
Additional examples of decimal time system
Beside using decimal time for payroll purposes, there are two more examples of the decimal-time implementation:
- Stardates — introduced in the Star Trek franchise, and
- Swatch Internet time — introduced by the Swatch watch company.
Stardates in Star Trek
A stardate is a fictional pseudo-decimal timekeeping system created for the Star Trek television and film franchises. The stardates in Star Trek were derived from the Julian system of the sixteenth century. The writers were told to choose four digits and a decimal for the original Star Trek series.
For example, the stardate for the Year: 2023, Month: January, Date: 10, Hour: 10, Minute: 47, Second: 4 is -299974.1113647894.
The Stardate calculator will help you convert any conventional date into a stardate.
Swatch Internet time
The Swatch company first developed the notion of Internet Time (also known as .beat time or BMT — Biel Mean Time) in 1998 for their "Beat" watches marketing campaign.
It was supposed to be a more straightforward form of global cooperation over the internet, since it lacked time zones. The official format involves inserting a @ sign before the current .beat and ranges from @000 to @1000 .beats daily.
For example, 6 hours equals @250. beats in Internet Time.
Time-to-decimal calculator summary
You may encounter a few extra minutes each day while determining how much to pay an employee. Eventually, those little bits of time may significantly mount up.
Apart from using out time-to-decimal calculator, you can also try Clockify to track every minute of an employee's time, and be able to handle payroll correctly.
Always track the time your employees have spent working on a specific project by utilizing a proper time tracking app. With Clockify, employees can track time by:
- Using a timer (start the timer using the START button, and stop the timer using the STOP button),
- Adding hours and minutes manually,
- Blocking out time in the Calendar view, and
- Clocking in via Kiosk
It’s also possible to track time via employee's timesheets that contain time and attendance records.
To track time, you can turn to Clockify’s browser extension/desktop app/mobile app.
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- Callis, M. (2020, December 7). Hours & Minutes Versus Decimal Time | Blog. Redcort. https://www.redcort.com/its-about-time/hours-and-minutes-versus-decimal-time
- Higgins, C. (2015, September 20). How Do “Star Trek” Stardates Work? Mental Floss. https://www.mentalfloss.com/article/68741/how-do-star-trek-stardates-work
- INTERNET TIME. (n.d.). https://www.swatch.com/en-us/internet-time.html
- Patowary, K. (2021, June 28). That Time When The French Divided The Day Into 10 hours. Amusing Planet. https://www.amusingplanet.com/2021/06/that-time-when-french-divided-day-into.html
- Star Trek Stardate Calculator. (n.d.). https://www.hillschmidt.de/gbr/sternenzeit.htm
- Watches, S. (n.d.). About French Revolutionary (Decimal) Time. Decimal time converter. https://svalbard.watch/pages/about_decimal_time.html