When picking a time monitoring tool, it is important to comprehend the various kinds of tools available. Tools like Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all feature powerful time monitoring features for professional services businesses. On the other hand, the time monitoring features in these tools are available only within larger project management (PM) suites. Because of this, you are paying much more cash for things like file storage, in-app discussion, progress reports, and shift administration. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you’ll find pure play time tracking tools such as Hubstaff (which begins at $5 per month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice tool for time tracking. Atracker
Characteristics and Utilization
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) is designed with an attractive left-rail blue navigation bar that leaves plenty of room around the right-hand side of your screen for data entry and analysis. When you first log into the system, you’ll be taken to the main dashboard, which gives you an summary of the number of hours your employees have worked this day and the number of hours they’ve worked over the previous seven days. You will also see a list of every member, their most recent jobs, and how active they have been over the last week. This is a solid PM data visualization which allows you immediately differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it instantly calls to attention projects which are becoming more than sufficient attention and jobs that are being disregarded.
There are two methods to add time in Hubstaff: You can construct manual timesheets with previous hours worked, or you may use the stopwatch feature on Hubstaff’s native desktop program. With the timesheet feature, you log your hours as you probably did with pen and paper through the analog era of time tracking. Basically, if you work your change, you add time to your timesheet, and you also sign off on it. This is a pretty standard procedure of tracking time. Unfortunately, because Hubstaff doesn’t let you add future time, you can’t use the platform for a shift planner. Administrators can allow users manually edit previously submitted timesheets, and they’re able to force users to need a reason to ensure they’re really adding hours that they worked. Admins can also set up the system to remind users to begin tracking time if they haven’t clocked to the system in a little while.
The next, and most frustrating, way of monitoring moment in Hubstaff is using the stopwatch feature. In every solution we analyzed, this component is available within the confines of your web browser–every alternative that is, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you are required to download an native desktop application that resides within another window. In it, you can select your job, press Start, along with your timer will begin counting. When you’re done, your activity and your screenshots will be transmitted to the main hub. The native program is going to take a picture at random intervals of up to three shots per hour depending on how frequently the admin would like to spy on employees. Screenshots can be partly fuzzy not to capture sensitive information on every grab, but enough of this screen is left unsullied you’ll still get a sense of if the screen is on work-related or play-related content. This is an annoyingly complex and complicated means to manually track 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 components to the cloud-based architecture to simplify ease of use.
Tracking time in real-time on Hubstaff’s Android and iOS programs is precisely the same as it is on the desktop program. The mobile programs let admins monitor motions via GPS monitoring. This provides you an overview of just how much motion was performed by your worker by capturing location data at different stages.
The Schedules tab lets you assign times and dates for employees to do the job. You can put a minimum number of hours to work, a lunch break duration, and you can allow it to be a recurring change. The program’s reporting software is terribly basic: You’ll receive access to weekly, daily, job, and member view reports in addition to a”custom” report that allows you filter information from the above reports. In comparison to the PM solutions in this class, Hubstaff’s reporting is downright embarrassing consequently, if your target is to learn and evolve based on if and how your employees handle time, you’d be better off working with Zoho Projects, our Editors’ Choice for PM.
Admins receive notifications once they have attained weekly staffing and funding 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 application. Remember: Consumers don’t need to send time through for acceptance, therefore automatic payments will be made whether employees were wrong or right concerning the number of hours that they worked. There is no reminder for supervisors to double-check each timesheet before automatic payments move out so, if you are worried about making bogus payments, then it is possible to set PayPal payments to manual. Atracker
Price And Options
Hubstaff was built to give you Big Brother-level oversight into when workers are working, what they are doing while they operate, and what you really need to pay them when the job is finished. The Basic $5-per-month plan gives you access to easy time monitoring tools, a worker payment program supervisor, 24/7 support, and user settings which can be handled on an employee-by-employee basis. Additionally, this plan enables you to keep track of whether your employees are working by letting you document screenshots while they function in addition to monitor keyboard and mouse action during shifts. Of the five tools we tested, Hubstaff is the only instrument that offered this level of insight into the way that workers are progressing. Although screen and keyboard monitoring are useful (albeit over-reaching) attributes for a shift monitor, Hubstaff’s implementation leaves much to be desired (more about this later).
The 9-per-user-per-month Premium plan includes all 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 software. The Premium bundle also has a lightweight schedulingtool that provides administrators the capability to assign shifts and delegate tasks from within the console. Premium customers may also use the tool to create invoices and make PayPal payments automatically. Clients that pay yearly will get two weeks free (for both price tiers).
Compared to TSheets, its nearest competitor in our roundup, Hubstaff is reasonably priced, particularly given the extra monitoring features that are unavailable in competitive tools. TSheets supplies a fundamental free accounts, in addition to a $4-per-user-per-month account that costs a $16 base fee per month for teams with fewer than 100 users, along with a $80 base fee per month for teams with over 100 users. The base fee, which Hubstaff does not charge, makes TSheets slightly more expensive than Hubstaff, even at Hubstaff’s Premium degree.
If you are more interested in those hulky PM alternatives, then you’ll want to pony up a little more cash. Mavenlink’s cheapest program that includes time monitoring prices $39 per user per month. Zoho’s cheapest time monitoring plan is $25 per month for an unlimited number of consumers (which is a fairly good deal if you need all the extra PM features). Wrike’s lowest time monitoring plan costs $24.80 per user per month.
What Should Be Added
Editor’s note: Since our first review of Hubstaff, the business has released a significant upgrade in late 2018 that specifically addressed specific feature flaws or omissions, including adding a web timer, fleshing out coverage options, and adding activity levels and monitor monitoring. We are going to be analyzing these attributes shortly and you’ll see the results in an upcoming update to this review.
Besides its draconian screengrab and keystroke tracking, Hubstaff doesn’t do a very good job allowing for deeper change supervision. By way of instance, Hubstaff does not allow advanced tracking. If you operate a trucking business and you are less concerned about the number of hours each trucker drove than the distance driven, then there is no way to manage this in Hubstaff. Users may add notes to a empty text field, but that data won’t be mixed into reports. This means you can not use it to find out about who’s working, how they are working, and what they are producing (other than the amount of hours monitored ). TSheets not only gives you this choice, it provides you the ability to create six additional customizable advanced monitoring fields. You can even add a query for every clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an episode? Yes. No.”) Along with the system forces the user to reply to the questions at the close of each change or they won’t have the ability to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is about monitoring work, the application doesn’t permit for IP address restrictions, which means your employees can say they are working from the office but they can actually be operating from a cruise ship in the Bahamas (unless they are using the mobile program to monitor time). This is a standard feature that’s available in virtually every other instrument we analyzed. Hubstaff also doesn’t enable admins to require users to snap a photo when they report to work. I guess it is overkill to make somebody take a selfie right before you get started recording their screen and tracking their keystrokes, but TSheets lets you set this as a requirement (which makes sense, especially if you’re monitoring tasks done outside of a computer, like retail, construction, or amusement work). The software also does not allow users clock in via a phone call, which can be a component TSheets and other service providers make readily available for workers who do not have a smartphone.
Monitoring Employee Work
We have touched on how a number of Hubstaff’s more Enormous Brother-like attributes factor into time monitoring. However, the platform also offers many of the hallmarks of employee tracking tools. Hubstaff’s employee monitoring features include keystroke logging, URL and application monitoring, GPS and place tracking, and action screenshots.
As soon as you set your users and they download the timer program onto their machine, the desktop program not only monitors time but will take screenshots randomly or in custom intervals, for example three screenshots each minute. This applies not just to the user’s most important display but any attached monitors as well. Hubstaff does not log keys however, it does monitor the action provided via the mouse and computer keyboard, giving employers a calculation of just how busy the employee is. This data all winds up on the Hubstaff dashboard from the Activity tab. This is where you can then select a user from the drop-down menu to view their screenshots connected with action data.
When it comes to program and URL tracking, Hubstaff goes beyond simply tracking time to learn what websites and apps an employee visited or opened and how long they had been there. The Reports module can subsequently run custom questions on vectors like program usage mapped against time and activity. Hubstaff incorporates with job and task management tools like Asana and Trello to filter reports from specific projects or tasks to monitor productivity.
1 unique employee tracking feature offered is GPS location tracking through Hubstaff’s mobile program. While the cellular app can not take screenshots or capture mobile app and website activity, it lets you monitor and log location for employees working in the field. While the thickness of monitoring surveillance and data features can not measure up to a grid application for example Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for worker tracking, Hubstaff includes a useful choice of attributes for companies that want a little more oversight. Atracker
Hubstaff is a easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time tracking tool. If you’re diligent about tracking employee behavior while on the clock, then there is no better program accessible than Hubstaff. You will be able to log screenshots, track keystroke volume, and path moves via GPS monitoring.
Regrettably, if you’re looking for a platform which goes the excess mile to enable customization, irregular information entry, or a much more sophisticated reporting structure, then Hubstaff won’t be perfect for you. In addition, should you opt for a different program, your employees will thank you for not requiring them to obtain a secondary app for tracking time–particularly when you consider that every other instrument we examined makes this potential within the confines of their online UI. Atracker