Introduction Activity Tracking Software
When picking a time tracking tool, it is important to understand the many different kinds of tools available. Tools like Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all feature powerful time tracking features for professional services companies. On the other hand, the time tracking features in these tools are available only as part of larger project management (PM) suites. Because of this, you are paying much more cash for things like file storage, in-app chat, progress reports, and shift management. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you will find pure play time monitoring tools such as Hubstaff (which begins at $5 per month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice instrument for time tracking. Activity Tracking Software
Characteristics and Utilization
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) is designed with an attractive left-rail blue navigation bar that leaves lots of room around the right-hand side of your display for data entry and analysis. When you first log into the system, you’ll be taken to the main dashboard, which provides you an summary of how many hours your employees have worked that day and the number of hours they’ve worked over the previous seven days. You will also find a list of each member, their most recent jobs, and how busy they’ve been over the last week. This is a solid PM data visualization that lets you immediately differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it immediately calls to attention projects which are getting more than enough attention and jobs that are being neglected.
There are two methods to add time in Hubstaff: You are able to construct manual timesheets with previous hours worked, or you can use the stopwatch feature on Hubstaff’s native desktop app. Together with the timesheet feature, you log in your hours since you likely did with pen and paper through the analog age of time tracking. Basically, if you work your shift, you add time to your timesheet, and you also sign off on it. This is a fairly standard method of monitoring time. Regrettably, because Hubstaff doesn’t let you add future time, you can not use the platform as a shift planner. Administrators can allow users manually edit formerly submitted timesheets, and they’re able to force users to need a motive to guarantee they’re actually adding hours they worked. Admins may also set the system up to remind users to start tracking time should they have not clocked to the system in a little while.
The second, and most frustrating, way of tracking time in Hubstaff is using the stopwatch feature. In every solution we analyzed, this element is available within the boundaries of your web browser–every solution that is, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you’re required to download a native desktop application that lives within another window. In it, you can choose your project, press Start, along with your timer will start counting. When you are done, your activity and your screenshots will be transmitted to the principal hub. The native program will take a picture at random periods of up to three shots per hour depending on how frequently the admin wants to spy on employees. Screenshots can be partly fuzzy not to record sensitive information on each catch, but a lot of the display is left unsullied you’ll still get a feeling of whether the screen is really on work-related or play-related content. This is an annoyingly complicated and convoluted way to manually monitor time, especially if you’re jumping from task to task through the day. Hubstaff must discover a way to add the stopwatch and also screengrab elements to the cloud-based architecture to simplify ease of use.
Tracking time in real time on Hubstaff’s Android and iOS apps is precisely the same as it’s on the desktop app. The mobile apps let admins monitor motions via GPS monitoring. This provides you an overview of how much motion was performed by your worker by capturing location data at distinct stages.
The Schedules tab lets you assign times and dates for employees to work. It is possible to set a minimum number of hours to operate, a lunch break duration, and you can allow it to be a recurring shift. The program’s reporting applications is terribly basic: You will receive access to weekly, daily, project, and penis view reports as well as a”custom” report which lets you filter data from the above reports. When compared to the PM solutions within this course, Hubstaff’s coverage is utterly embarrassing consequently, if your goal is to learn and evolve based on when and how your employees handle time, you’d be much better off working using Zoho Projects, our Editors’ Choice for PM.
Admins receive notifications when they have reached weekly staffing and budget limitations. Invoices are automatically calculated and made based on the time each employee worked, in addition to their associated pay rate. It is possible to set up automatic citizenship through PayPal, which lets you automate payments based on time tracked within the tool. Keep in mind: Consumers do not need to send time through for acceptance, therefore automatic payments will be made whether workers were wrong or right about the amount of hours they worked. There’s not any reminder for supervisors to double-check each timesheet before automatic payments go out thus, if you are concerned about making false payments, then you can set PayPal payments to guide. Activity Tracking Software
Price And Options
Hubstaff was built to give you Big Brother-level oversight into when employees are working, what they’re doing while they work, and what you really want to pay them when the work is finished. The Basic $5-per-month plan gives you access to easy time monitoring tools, a worker payment schedule supervisor, 24/7 support, and user settings which may be handled on an employee-by-employee basis. Moreover, this plan enables you to keep track of whether your employees are operating by letting you record screenshots while they function in addition to monitor mouse and keyboard action during changes. Of the five tools we’ve analyzed, Hubstaff is the only tool that offered this level of insight into how employees are progressing. Although keyboard and screen tracking are useful (albeit over-reaching) attributes for a change monitor, Hubstaff’s implementation leaves much to be desired (more on this later).
The $9-per-user-per-month Premium program includes everything you’ll discover in the fundamental program, but you’ll also have access to Hubstaff’s application programming interface (API) to integrate the application with other third-party applications. The Premium bundle also has a lightweight schedulingtool that provides administrators the power to assign changes and assign tasks from within the console. Premium customers can also use the application to create invoices and make PayPal payments mechanically. Clients that pay yearly will receive two months free (for both cost tiers).
Compared to TSheets, its closest competitor in our roundup, Hubstaff is reasonably priced, particularly given the added tracking features that are unavailable in competitive resources. TSheets offers a basic free account, as well as a $4-per-user-per-month accounts that charges a $16 base fee per month for groups who have fewer than 100 users, and a $80 base fee monthly for teams with over a hundred users. The base fee, which Hubstaff does not charge, makes TSheets marginally more expensive than Hubstaff, even in Hubstaff’s Premium degree.
If you are more interested in these hulky PM solutions, then you’ll want to pony up a little more money. Mavenlink’s cheapest program that includes time tracking costs $39 per user per month. Zoho’s cheapest time tracking plan is $25 per month for an unlimited number of users (that is a fairly solid deal if you need all the excess PM features). Wrike’s lowest time monitoring plan costs $24.80 per user per month.
What Should Be Added
Editor’s note: Since our original review of Hubstaff, the business has released a significant upgrade in late 2018 that specifically addressed specific feature weaknesses or omissions, including adding a internet timer, fleshing out coverage options, and adding action levels and monitor tracking. We’ll be testing these features shortly and you’ll see the results in an upcoming update to this review.
Besides its draconian screengrab and keystroke monitoring, Hubstaff doesn’t do an excellent job allowing for deeper shift supervision. By way of instance, Hubstaff does not allow advanced tracking. If you operate a trucking business and you’re less concerned about the number of hours a trucker drove than the distance driven, then there’s no way to handle this in Hubstaff. Users may add notes to a empty text area, but that data won’t be mixed into accounts. This means you can’t use it to learn about who is functioning, how they are functioning, and what they’re generating (other than the number of hours tracked). TSheets not only gives you this option, it gives you the ability to make six extra customizable innovative monitoring fields. You might even put in a question for every single clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an incident? Yes. No.”) Along with the system forces the consumer to respond to the questions at the end of every change or else they won’t be able to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is about monitoring work, the tool does not allow for IP address limitations, so your workers can say they’re working from the workplace but they can actually be working from a cruise ship in the Bahamas (unless they are using the cell app to track time). This is a normal feature that’s available in virtually every other instrument we tested. Hubstaff also doesn’t enable admins to require users to snap a photo when they report to work. I suppose it is overkill to make someone take a selfie before you get started recording their display and tracking their keystrokes, but TSheets enables you to place this as a requirement (which makes sense, especially if you’re monitoring tasks done outside of a computer, like electronic, construction, or entertainment work). The software also doesn’t allow users clock via a phone call, which can be an element TSheets along with other service providers make available for workers who don’t have a smartphone.
Tracking Employee Work
We’ve touched on how some of Hubstaff’s more Enormous Brother-like features factor into time monitoring. However, the platform also has many of the hallmarks of worker tracking tools. Hubstaff’s employee monitoring attributes include keystroke logging, URL and application tracking, GPS and location monitoring, and activity screenshots.
Once you place your customers and they download the timer program onto their server, the desktop app not only tracks time but will require screenshots randomly or in custom intervals, for example three screenshots per minute. This applies not just to the user’s most important screen but any attached monitors as well. Hubstaff doesn’t log keys however, it will monitor the activity provided through the mouse and computer keyboard, providing employers a calculation of how busy the worker is. This info all winds up around the Hubstaff dashboard in the Task tab. This is where you can then pick an individual in the drop-down menu to see their screenshots correlated with action data.
If it comes to application and URL monitoring, Hubstaff goes beyond simply tracking time to see what websites and programs an employee opened or visited and how long they had been there. The Reports section may subsequently run custom questions on vectors like program usage mapped against time and activity. Hubstaff incorporates with project and job management tools like Asana and Trello to filter reports from specific tasks or projects to track productivity.
1 unique employee monitoring feature offered is GPS location tracking through Hubstaff’s mobile app. While the cellular app can’t take screenshots or capture mobile app and website activity, it allows you to track and log location for employees working in the area. While the depth of monitoring data and surveillance features can’t step up to a powerhouse tool for example Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for worker monitoring, Hubstaff includes a useful selection of features for employers that want a little more oversight. Activity Tracking Software
Hubstaff is a easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time tracking tool. If you are diligent about monitoring employee behavior while on the clockthen there is no better software accessible than Hubstaff. You’ll be able to log screenshots, monitor keystroke volume, and route moves via GPS tracking.
Regrettably, if you’re looking for a platform which goes the excess mile to enable customization, irregular data entry, or a much more sophisticated reporting structure, then Hubstaff will not be perfect for you. In addition, in case you opt for another program, your employees will thank you for not needing them to download a secondary app for tracking time–especially when you consider that every other tool we reviewed makes this potential within the confines of their online UI. Activity Tracking Software