Background Business Software
When picking a time tracking tool, it is important to understand the various kinds of tools out there. Tools such as Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all feature robust time tracking features for professional services businesses. However, the time monitoring features in these tools are available only within larger project management (PM) suites. Because of this, you are paying much more money 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 tracking tools like Hubstaff (which begins at $5 a month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice instrument for time tracking. Business Software
Characteristics and Utilization
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) is designed with a appealing left-rail blue navigation bar that leaves lots of room on the right-hand side of your display for data entry and analysis. When you 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 this day and the number of hours they’ve worked over the previous seven days. You’ll also see a list of each member, their most recent tasks, and how active they have been over the last week. This is a solid PM data visualization that lets you immediately differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it instantly calls to attention projects that are becoming more than enough focus and projects that are being disregarded.
There are two methods to put in time in Hubstaff: You are able to build manual timesheets with past hours worked, or you may use the stopwatch feature on Hubstaff’s native desktop program. Together with the timesheet attribute, you log your hours since you likely did with pencil and paper through the analog age of time tracking. Basically, if you work your change, you add the time to your timesheet, and you sign off on it. This is a fairly standard method of monitoring time. Unfortunately, because Hubstaff doesn’t let you add future time, you can not use the platform as a shift planner. Administrators can let users manually edit formerly submitted timesheets, and they’re able to induce users to require a motive to ensure they’re really adding hours they worked. Admins may also set the system up to let users to start tracking time if they haven’t clocked into the machine in a while.
The next, and most frustrating, way of monitoring moment in Hubstaff is using the stopwatch feature. In each solution we analyzed, this component is available within the confines of your internet browser–every solution that is, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you are expected to download a native desktop application that resides within a separate window. In it, you can choose your job, press Start, along with your own timer will begin counting. When you are done, your activity and your screenshots will be transmitted to the principal hub. The native app is going to take a picture at random intervals of up to three shots per hour depending on how frequently the admin wants to spy on workers. Screenshots can be partially fuzzy to not capture sensitive information on each catch, but enough of this display is left unsullied you’ll still get a feeling 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 screengrab components 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 is on the desktop program. The mobile apps let admins monitor movements via GPS tracking. This provides you an overview of how much movement was done by your employee by capturing location data at different stages.
The Schedules tab lets you assign dates and times for employees to do the job. It is possible to put a minimum number of hours to work, a lunch break interval, and you’ll be able to allow it to be a recurring change. The tool’s reporting software is terribly basic: You will receive access to weekly, daily, project, and member view reports as well as a”custom” report which allows you filter data from the aforementioned reports. In comparison to the PM solutions in this class, Hubstaff’s reporting is utterly embarrassing consequently, if your target is to understand and evolve according to if and how your employees handle time, you would be better off working with Zoho Projects, our Editors’ Choice for PM.
Admins receive notifications once they have attained weekly staffing and budget limitations. Invoices are automatically calculated and made based on the time each worker worked, as well as their related pay rate. It is possible to set up automatic citizenship through PayPal, which lets you automate payments based on time tracked within the tool. Remember: Users do not have to send time through for approval, so automatic payments will be made whether workers were wrong or right concerning the amount of hours that they worked. There’s no reminder for supervisors to double-check each timesheet ahead of automatic payments go out so, if you’re worried about making false payments, then it is possible to place PayPal payments to guide. Business Software
Cost And Alternatives
Hubstaff has been built to give you Big Brother-level oversight into when employees are working, what they’re doing while they work, and what you really need to pay them as soon as the work is done. The Fundamental $5-per-month program provides you access to simple time tracking tools, an employee payment schedule supervisor, 24/7 support, and user settings which may be handled on an employee-by-employee basis. Additionally, this plan lets you keep track of whether your employees are operating by letting you record screenshots while they work in addition to monitor keyboard and mouse activity during shifts. Of the five tools we analyzed, Hubstaff is the only instrument that offered this level of insight into the way that workers are progressing. Although keyboard and screen tracking are helpful (albeit over-reaching) attributes for a shift monitor, Hubstaff’s implementation leaves much to be wanted (more about this later).
The 9-per-user-per-month Premium program includes all you’ll discover in the Basic plan, but you will also have access to Hubstaff’s application programming interface (API) to integrate the application with other third party applications. The Premium bundle also comes with a lightweight schedulingtool that provides administrators the capability to assign shifts and assign tasks from inside the console. Premium customers can also use the application to make invoices and make PayPal payments automatically. Customers that pay annually will receive two weeks free (for both price tiers).
Compared to TSheets, its nearest competitor in our roundup, Hubstaff is fairly priced, especially given the extra monitoring features that are unavailable in competitive tools. TSheets offers a fundamental free account, as well as a $4-per-user-per-month accounts that costs a $16 base fee a month for teams who have fewer than 100 users, along with an $80 foundation fee per month for groups with more than 100 users. The base fee, which Hubstaff does not charge, makes TSheets marginally more expensive than Hubstaff, even at Hubstaff’s Premium degree.
If you’re more interested in these hulky PM solutions, then you’ll need to pony up a little more cash. Mavenlink’s cheapest plan that includes time monitoring costs $39 per user per month. Zoho’s cheapest time monitoring plan is $25 a month for an unlimited number of users (which is a fairly solid deal if you want all the extra PM features). Wrike’s lowest time tracking plan costs $24.80 per user per month.
What Ought to Be Added
Editor’s note: Since our original review of Hubstaff, the business has released a major update in late 2018 that specifically addressed certain feature weaknesses or omissions, such as adding a web timer, fleshing out reporting options, and adding activity levels and screen tracking. 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 monitoring, Hubstaff does not do an excellent job allowing for deeper change oversight. By way of example, Hubstaff doesn’t allow advanced tracking. If you operate a trucking business and you are less concerned about how many hours each trucker drove than the distance driven, then there is no way to manage that in Hubstaff. Users can add notes to a empty text field, but that information will not be blended into reports. As a consequence, you can not use it to find out about who’s functioning, how they’re functioning, and what they are generating (aside from the amount of hours monitored ). TSheets not only gives you this option, it gives you the ability to make six additional customizable advanced monitoring fields. You might 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 every shift or they won’t have the ability to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is about tracking work, the application doesn’t allow for IP address restrictions, so your workers can say they are working from the workplace but they could actually be operating from a cruise ship in the Bahamas (unless they are using the cell app to track time). This is a standard feature that’s available in virtually every other instrument we tested. Hubstaff also does not enable admins to require users to snap a photo if they report to work. I guess it’s overkill to make someone take a selfie right before you start recording their screen and tracking their keystrokes, but TSheets enables you to set this as a requirement (which makes sense, particularly if you’re monitoring tasks done out of a computer, such as electronic, building, or amusement work). The program also does not allow users clock via a telephone call, which is a component TSheets and other service providers make available for workers who do not have a smartphone.
Monitoring Employee Work
We’ve touched on how a number of Hubstaff’s more Big Brother-like features factor into time monitoring. However, the platform also has many of the hallmarks of worker tracking tools. Hubstaff’s employee tracking attributes include keystroke logging, URL and application monitoring, GPS and location tracking, and action screenshots.
As soon as you place your users and they download the timer app onto their machine, the desktop program not only monitors time but will take screenshots randomly or in custom intervals, such as three screenshots each minute. This applies not only to the user’s most important display but any connected monitors too. Hubstaff doesn’t log keys however, it will monitor the activity provided through the mouse and keyboard, giving employers a calculation of how busy the worker is. This data all winds up around the Hubstaff dashboard in the Activity tab. This is where you can then pick a user from the drop-down menu to see their screenshots correlated with action data.
When it comes to program and URL monitoring, Hubstaff goes beyond simply tracking time to learn what websites and apps a worker visited or opened and how long they had been there. The Reports section can then run custom queries on vectors like app usage mapped against time and action. Hubstaff integrates with project and job management tools such as Asana and Trello to filter reports from particular projects or tasks to track productivity.
1 unique employee tracking feature supplied is GPS location tracking through Hubstaff’s mobile program. While the mobile app can not take screenshots or catch mobile app and website activity, it allows you to track and log location for employees working in the area. While the thickness of tracking surveillance and data features can’t measure up to a powerhouse tool such as Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for worker tracking, Hubstaff has a useful choice of features for employers that want a bit more oversight. Business Software
Hubstaff is a easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time monitoring tool. If you’re diligent about tracking employee behavior while on the clockthen there’s no better program accessible than Hubstaff. You will be able to log screenshots, monitor keystroke volume, and route movements via GPS monitoring.
Unfortunately, if you’re looking for a platform that goes the extra mile to enable customization, irregular information entry, or a much more advanced reporting arrangement, then Hubstaff won’t be right for you. Additionally, in case you choose a different program, your employees will thank you for not needing them to download a secondary program for monitoring time–especially once you consider that every other instrument we examined makes this potential within the boundaries of their online UI. Business Software