Background Easy Time Tracking
When choosing a time monitoring tool, it is important to comprehend the many different kinds of tools out there. Tools such as Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all include powerful time tracking features for professional services businesses. However, the time tracking features in these tools are available only within larger project management (PM) suites. As a result, you are paying a lot more money for things such as file storage, in-app chat, progress reports, and shift management. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you’ll discover pure play time tracking tools like Hubstaff (which starts at $5 per month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice instrument for time tracking. Easy Time Tracking
Characteristics and Utilization
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) was created with a appealing left-rail blue navigation bar that leaves plenty of room on the side of your display for data entry and analysis. When you first log into the system, you will be taken to the main dashboard, which gives you an summary of the number of hours your employees have worked that day and how many hours they’ve worked over the previous seven days. You will also see 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 allows you instantly differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it instantly 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 can build manual timesheets with previous hours worked, or you may use the stopwatch feature on Hubstaff’s native desktop program. With the timesheet attribute, you log your hours since you probably did with pen and paper during the analog age of time monitoring. Basically, if you work your change, you add time to your timesheet, and you also 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’t use the platform as a shift organizer. Administrators can allow users manually edit formerly submitted timesheets, and they’re able to induce users to need a reason to ensure they’re actually adding hours that they worked. Admins may also set the system up to let users to begin tracking time should they haven’t clocked to the machine in a while.
The second, and most frustrating, way of tracking moment in Hubstaff is using the stopwatch feature. In every solution we tested, this element is available within the confines of your web browserevery alternative that is, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you are expected to download a native desktop application that resides within another window. In it, you can choose your project, press Start, along with your own timer will start counting. When you’re done, your activity and your screenshots will be sent 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 partially fuzzy not to capture sensitive information on every catch, but enough of this screen is left unsullied you’ll still get a sense of whether the screen is really on work-related or play-related content. This can be 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 bring 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 programs is exactly the same as it’s on the desktop app. The mobile programs let admins monitor motions via GPS monitoring. This gives you an overview of just how much movement was done by your employee by capturing location data at different stages.
The Schedules tab lets you assign times and dates for workers to do the job. You can set a minimum number of hours to work, a lunch break interval, and you can allow it to be a recurring change. The program’s reporting software is horribly basic: You’ll get access to weekly, daily, job, and penis view reports as well as a”custom” report that lets you filter information from the above reports. When compared to the PM options within this course, Hubstaff’s coverage is utterly embarrassing so, if your target is to learn and evolve based on if and how your employees handle time, you would be much better off working with Zoho Projects, our Editors’ Choice for PM.
Admins receive notifications once they have reached weekly staffing and funding limitations. Invoices are automatically calculated and made based on the time each worker worked, in addition to his or her related pay rate. You can set up automatic payroll through PayPal, which enables you to automate payments based on time monitored within the tool. Remember: Users do not have to send time for acceptance, so automatic payments will be made whether employees were right or wrong concerning the amount of hours that they worked. There is not any reminder for managers to double-check every timesheet ahead of automatic payments move out so, if you’re concerned about making false payments, then it is possible to set PayPal payments to manual. Easy Time Tracking
Cost And Options
Hubstaff has been constructed to provide you with Big Brother-level oversight into when workers are working, what they are doing while they work, and what you really need to pay them when the job is done. The Fundamental $5-per-month plan gives you access to simple time monitoring tools, an employee payment schedule manager, 24/7 support, and user preferences that may be managed on an employee-by-employee basis. Moreover, this plan enables you to keep tabs on whether or not your employees are working by letting you record screenshots while they work as well as monitor keyboard and mouse activity during changes. Of the five tools we’ve tested, Hubstaff is the only tool that offered this amount of insight into the way that workers are progressing. Although keyboard and screen tracking are helpful (albeit over-reaching) features 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 find in the Basic plan, but you will also get 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 delegate tasks from within the console. Premium customers may also use the application to make invoices and make PayPal payments mechanically. Clients that pay yearly will get two months free (for both price tiers).
Compared to TSheets, its nearest competition in our roundup, Hubstaff is reasonably priced, particularly given the added monitoring features that are unavailable in competitive tools. TSheets offers a basic free accounts, 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, along with a $80 base fee per month for teams with over 100 users. The base fee, which Hubstaff does not charge, makes TSheets marginally more costly than Hubstaff, even at Hubstaff’s Premium level.
If you are more interested in those hulky PM alternatives, then you’ll need to pony up a little more money. Mavenlink’s cheapest program that includes time monitoring prices $39 per user per month. Zoho’s cheapest time monitoring plan is $25 a month for an infinite number of users (that is a pretty solid deal if you want all the extra PM features). Wrike’s lowest time monitoring plan prices $24.80 per user per month.
What Ought to Be Added
Editor’s note: Since our first review of Hubstaff, the company has released a significant update in late 2018 that specifically addressed specific feature flaws or omissions, including adding a internet timer, fleshing out coverage choices, and adding action levels and screen tracking. We are going to be analyzing these features shortly and you will see the results in an upcoming update to this review.
Besides its draconian screengrab and keystroke monitoring, Hubstaff doesn’t do a very good job allowing for deeper change oversight. By way of example, Hubstaff does not allow advanced tracking. If you operate a trucking company and you’re less concerned about the number of hours each trucker drove than the distance driven, then there is no way to handle that in Hubstaff. Users can add notes to a empty text field, but that data will not be blended into accounts. This means you can not use it to find out about who’s working, how they are working, and what they’re generating (aside from the amount of hours monitored ). TSheets not only gives you this choice, it gives you the ability to create six additional customizable advanced monitoring fields. You can even add a question for every clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an incident? Yes. No.”) And the system forces the consumer to respond to the queries at the close of each change or they won’t be able to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is all about tracking work, the tool doesn’t allow for IP address limitations, which means your employees can say they’re working from the office but they can actually be operating from a cruise boat in the Bahamas (unless they’re using the cell program to monitor time). This is a normal feature that’s available in almost every other instrument we tested. Hubstaff also doesn’t enable admins to require users to snap a photo if they report to work. I guess it is overkill to make someone take a selfie right before you get started recording their screen and tracking their keystrokes, but TSheets lets you place this as a requirement (which makes sense, particularly if you’re monitoring tasks done outside of a computer, like retail, construction, or entertainment work). The software also doesn’t allow users clock via a phone call, which can be a component TSheets and other service providers make readily available for employees who do not have a smartphone.
Monitoring Employee Work
We’ve touched on how some of Hubstaff’s more Enormous Brother-like attributes factor into time monitoring. However, the platform also has a lot of the hallmarks of employee tracking tools. Hubstaff’s employee monitoring attributes include keystroke logging, URL and application tracking, GPS and place monitoring, and action screenshots.
As soon as you place your customers and they download the timer program onto their server, the desktop app not only monitors time but will take screenshots randomly or in custom intervals, for example three screenshots per minute. This applies not just to the user’s main display but any attached monitors as well. Hubstaff doesn’t log keys but it does monitor the action provided through the mouse and keyboard, providing employers a calculation of how active the employee is. This info all winds up around the Hubstaff dashboard in the Activity tab. This is where you can then select an individual from the drop-down menu to see their screenshots connected with action data.
When it comes to application and URL tracking, Hubstaff goes beyond simply tracking time to see what sites and apps an employee visited or opened and how long they were there. The Reports section can subsequently run custom questions on vectors like program usage mapped against time and action. Hubstaff incorporates with project and task management tools such as Asana and Trello to filter reports from particular projects or tasks to monitor productivity.
1 unique employee tracking feature supplied is GPS location tracking through Hubstaff’s mobile app. While the mobile app can not take screenshots or capture mobile app and site activity, it allows you to monitor and log location for workers working in the field. While the thickness of tracking data and surveillance features can’t measure up to a powerhouse tool for example Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for employee monitoring, Hubstaff includes a useful selection of features for employers that want a little more oversight. Easy Time Tracking
Hubstaff is a easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time tracking tool. If you are diligent about tracking employee behavior while on the clockthen there is no better program available than Hubstaff. You will be able to log screenshots, track keystroke volume, and route moves via GPS tracking.
Regrettably, if you’re looking for a platform that goes the extra mile to enable customization, atypical information entry, or even a more sophisticated reporting arrangement, then Hubstaff won’t be right for you. Additionally, should you choose another program, your employees will thank you for not needing them to obtain a secondary program for tracking time–particularly when you consider that every other instrument we examined makes this possible within the confines of their online UI. Easy Time Tracking