Intro Hubstaff Podcast
When picking a time tracking tool, it is important to understand the many different types of tools out there. Tools such as Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all include robust time monitoring features for professional services businesses. However, the time tracking features in such tools are available only within bigger project management (PM) suites. As a result, you’re paying much more money for things such as file storage, in-app discussion, progress reports, and shift management. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you’ll find pure play time monitoring tools such as Hubstaff (which begins at $5 per month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice tool for time tracking. Hubstaff Podcast
Attributes and Usage
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) was created with a appealing left-rail blue navigation bar which leaves plenty of room around the 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 past seven days. You will also find a list of each member, their most recent jobs, and how active they’ve been over the last week. This is a strong PM data visualization that allows you instantly differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it immediately calls to attention projects that are getting more than enough focus and projects that are being disregarded.
There are two ways 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 pencil and paper during the analog age of time tracking. Basically, if you work your shift, you add time to your own 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 organizer. Administrators can allow users manually edit formerly submitted timesheets, and they can force users to need a motive to guarantee they’re actually adding hours that they worked. Admins may also set up the system to let users to begin monitoring time should they have not clocked into the machine in a little while.
The second, and most bothersome, way of monitoring moment in Hubstaff is using the stopwatch feature. In each solution we analyzed, this component can be found within the confines of your web browser–every alternative that is, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you are expected to download a native desktop application that lives within another window. In it, you can choose your job, press Start, and your own 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 photo at random intervals of up to 3 shots per hour depending on how frequently the admin wants to spy on workers. Screenshots can be partially fuzzy not to capture sensitive information on each grab, but enough of this display is left unsullied that 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 means to manually track time, particularly if you’re jumping from task to task throughout the day. Hubstaff must discover a way to add the stopwatch and 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 program. The mobile apps let admins monitor movements via GPS monitoring. This provides you an overview of just how much motion was done by your employee by capturing location information at different stages.
The Schedules tab enables you to assign times and dates for employees to work. You can set a minimum number of hours to operate, a lunch break interval, and you’ll be able to make it a recurring shift. The tool’s reporting applications is terribly basic: You’ll receive access to weekly, daily, project, and penis view reports as well as a”custom” report which lets you filter information from the aforementioned reports. In comparison to the PM options within this course, Hubstaff’s coverage is utterly embarrassing consequently, if your goal is to learn and evolve based on if 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 attained weekly staffing and funding 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 payroll through PayPal, which enables you to automate payments based on time tracked within the application. Keep in mind: Users do not need to send time through for acceptance, so automatic payments will be made whether workers were wrong or right concerning the amount of hours that they worked. There’s not any reminder for managers to double-check every timesheet ahead of automatic payments go out thus, if you’re worried about making bogus payments, then it is possible to place PayPal payments to guide. Hubstaff Podcast
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 want to pay them as soon as the work is finished. The Basic $5-per-month program gives you access to simple time monitoring tools, an employee payment schedule supervisor, 24/7 support, and user preferences which can be managed in an employee-by-employee basis. Additionally, this plan lets you keep track of whether your employees are working by allowing you document screenshots while they work in addition to monitor keyboard and mouse action during changes. Of the five tools we’ve analyzed, Hubstaff is the only tool that offered this amount of insight into the way that employees are progressing. Although keyboard and screen monitoring are helpful (albeit over-reaching) features for a change monitor, Hubstaff’s implementation leaves much to be wanted (more on this later).
The $9-per-user-per-month Premium program includes everything you’ll find in the fundamental plan, but you will also have access to Hubstaff’s application programming interface (API) to integrate the tool with other third party applications. The Premium bundle also has a lightweight schedulingtool that gives administrators the capability to assign changes and delegate tasks from within the console. Premium clients can also use the application to create invoices and make PayPal payments automatically. Clients that pay annually will get two months free (for both price tiers).
Compared to TSheets, its closest competition in our roundup, Hubstaff is fairly priced, particularly given the added monitoring features that are unavailable in competitive resources. TSheets offers a fundamental free account, as well as a $4-per-user-per-month account that charges a $16 base fee a month for teams with fewer than 100 users, along with an $80 foundation 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 level.
If you are more interested in these hulky PM alternatives, then you’ll need to pony up a bit more cash. Mavenlink’s cheapest program 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 consumers (which is a fairly solid deal if you need all of the extra PM features). Wrike’s lowest time tracking plan costs $24.80 per user per month.
What Should Be Added
Editor’s note: Since our original review of Hubstaff, the company has released a significant update in late 2018 that specifically addressed specific feature flaws or omissions, such as adding a internet timer, fleshing out reporting options, and adding activity levels and screen monitoring. We are going to be analyzing these features shortly and you will see the results in an upcoming update to this review.
Aside from its draconian screengrab and keystroke tracking, Hubstaff does not do a very good job allowing for deeper shift supervision. By way of example, Hubstaff doesn’t allow advanced monitoring. If you run a trucking company and you are less concerned about the number of hours a trucker drove than the distance driven, then there’s no way to handle that in Hubstaff. Users may add notes to an empty text field, but that data will not be blended into reports. This means that you can’t use it to find out about who is functioning, how they are functioning, and what they’re generating (aside from the number of hours tracked). TSheets not only provides you this choice, it gives you the ability to create six extra customizable innovative tracking fields. You might even put in a query for every clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an incident? Yes. No.”) Along with the system forces the consumer to respond to the questions at the close of each shift or else they will not have the ability to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is all about monitoring work, the application does not permit for IP address limitations, so your employees can say they’re working from the workplace but they could actually be working from a cruise boat in the Bahamas (unless they’re using the cell app to monitor time). This is a standard feature that’s available in virtually every other tool we analyzed. Hubstaff also does not enable admins to require users to snap a photograph if they report to work. I guess it is overkill to generate somebody take a selfie before you get started recording their screen and monitoring their keystrokes, but TSheets lets you set this as a requirement (which makes sense, particularly if you’re monitoring tasks done out of a computer, such as retail, building, or amusement work). The program also does not allow users clock in via a phone call, which is a component TSheets along with 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 Enormous Brother-like attributes factor into time tracking. However, the platform also has a lot of the hallmarks of worker monitoring tools. Hubstaff’s employee monitoring features include keystroke logging, URL and program monitoring, GPS and place tracking, and activity screenshots.
Once you set your customers and they download the timer app onto their machine, the desktop program not only tracks time but will take screenshots randomly or at custom intervals, for example three screenshots each minute. This applies not only to the user’s main display but any attached monitors too. Hubstaff does not log keys however, it will track the action provided through the mouse and computer keyboard, providing companies 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 an individual from the drop-down menu to view their screenshots correlated with activity data.
If it comes to program and URL tracking, Hubstaff goes beyond simply tracking time to see what websites and programs a worker visited or opened and how long they had been there. The Reports section may subsequently run custom questions on vectors such as program usage mapped against time and action. Hubstaff incorporates with job and job management tools such as Asana and Trello to filter reports by specific projects or tasks to monitor productivity.
1 unique employee monitoring feature supplied is GPS location tracking through Hubstaff’s mobile program. While the mobile app can’t take screenshots or capture mobile app and site activity, it lets you monitor and log location for workers working in the area. While the depth of tracking data and surveillance features can not step up to a grid application for example Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for employee tracking, Hubstaff includes a useful choice of features for companies that want a bit more oversight. Hubstaff Podcast
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 software available than Hubstaff. You will be able to log screenshots, monitor keystroke volume, and route moves via GPS tracking.
Unfortunately, if you’re trying to find a platform that goes the excess mile to enable customization, irregular data entry, or a much more sophisticated reporting arrangement, then Hubstaff won’t be right for you. In addition, should you choose another program, your employees will thank you for not requiring them to obtain a secondary program for monitoring time–especially when you consider that every other tool we reviewed makes this potential within the boundaries of their online UI. Hubstaff Podcast