Background Hubstaff Reviews
When choosing a time monitoring tool, it’s important to understand the various kinds of tools available. Tools such as Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all feature powerful time tracking features for professional services businesses. However, the time tracking features in such tools are available only within bigger project management (PM) suites. Because of this, you are paying much more cash for things such as file storage, in-app chat, progress reports, and change administration. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you’ll find pure play time tracking tools such as Hubstaff (which starts at $5 per month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice instrument for time tracking. Hubstaff Reviews
Characteristics and Usage
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) is designed with an attractive left-rail blue navigation bar which leaves lots of room around 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 provides you an summary of the number of hours your employees have worked this day and how many hours they have worked over the previous seven days. You’ll also see a list of each member, their latest tasks, and how active they have 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 becoming more than enough attention and projects that are being disregarded.
There are two methods to put in time in Hubstaff: You can build manual timesheets with past hours worked, or you can use the stopwatch feature on Hubstaff’s native desktop app. Together with the timesheet attribute, you log your hours as you probably did with pen and paper during the analog age of time tracking. Basically, if you work your change, you add the time to your own timesheet, and you also sign off on it. This is a fairly standard method of tracking time. Unfortunately, because Hubstaff does not allow you to add future time, you can’t use the platform as a shift organizer. Administrators can let users manually edit previously submitted timesheets, and they’re able to force users to require a motive to guarantee they’re actually adding hours that they worked. Admins may also set up the system to remind users to begin monitoring time if they haven’t clocked into the system in a little while.
The next, and most frustrating, way of tracking time in Hubstaff is by using the stopwatch feature. In each solution we tested, this component is available within the confines of your internet browserevery alternative that is, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you are expected to download an native desktop application that resides within another window. In it, you can select your job, press Start, and your own timer will begin counting. When you are done, your activity and your screenshots will be transmitted to the main hub. The native app is going to take a photo at random periods of up to three shots per hour depending on how often the admin would like to spy on employees. Screenshots can be partly fuzzy to not record sensitive information on every grab, but a lot of this screen is left unsullied that you’ll still get a feeling of whether the display is really on work-related or play-related content. This is an annoyingly complex and convoluted way 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 exactly the same as it’s on the desktop program. The mobile programs let admins monitor motions via GPS monitoring. This provides you an overview of how much motion was performed by your employee by capturing location data at different stages.
The Schedules tab lets you assign dates and times for workers to do the job. You can put a minimum number of hours to work, a lunch break interval, and you’ll be able to make it a recurring shift. The tool’s reporting software is terribly basic: You’ll get access to weekly, daily, project, and penis view reports as well as a”habit” report which allows you filter data from the aforementioned reports. When compared to the PM options within this class, Hubstaff’s coverage is downright embarrassing so, if your target is to learn and evolve based on if and how your employees handle time, you would be better off working using Zoho Projects, our Editors’ Choice for PM.
Admins receive notifications when they’ve attained weekly staffing and funding limits. Invoices are automatically calculated and created depending on the time each employee worked, as well as his or her related pay rate. It is possible to set up automatic payroll through PayPal, which enables you to automate payments based on time tracked inside the application. Keep in mind: Consumers do not need to send time for approval, therefore automatic payments will be made whether employees were wrong or right about the number of hours that they worked. There’s not any reminder for supervisors to double-check each timesheet before automatic payments go out thus, if you’re concerned about making bogus payments, then you can place PayPal payments to manual. Hubstaff Reviews
Price And Alternatives
Hubstaff has been 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 as soon as the work is finished. The Basic $5-per-month plan provides you access to simple time tracking tools, a worker payment schedule supervisor, 24/7 support, and user preferences that can be handled in an employee-by-employee basis. Moreover, this program lets you keep track of whether or not your employees are operating by letting you document screenshots while they work as well as monitor keyboard and mouse activity during shifts. Of the five tools we analyzed, Hubstaff is the only instrument which provided this amount of insight into how workers are progressing. Although screen and keyboard tracking are helpful (albeit over-reaching) attributes for a shift screen, Hubstaff’s implementation leaves much to be desired (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 software. 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 yearly will get two weeks free (for both price tiers).
In comparison to TSheets, its nearest competitor in our roundup, Hubstaff is fairly priced, especially given the extra tracking features that are unavailable in competitive tools. TSheets offers a fundamental free accounts, in addition to a $4-per-user-per-month account that charges a $16 base fee per month for groups who have fewer than 100 users, and a $80 base fee per month for teams with over a hundred users. The base fee, which Hubstaff does not charge, makes TSheets marginally more costly than Hubstaff, even in Hubstaff’s Premium degree.
If you are more interested in these hulky PM alternatives, then you will want to pony up a little more money. Mavenlink’s cheapest program that includes time monitoring costs $39 per user per month. Zoho’s cheapest time monitoring plan is $25 per month for an unlimited number of users (which is a pretty solid deal if you want all of the extra PM attributes ). Wrike’s lowest time monitoring plan costs $24.80 per user per month.
What Should Be Added
Editor’s note: Since our original overview of Hubstaff, the business has released a significant upgrade 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 monitor monitoring. We are going to be testing these attributes shortly and you will see the results in an upcoming update to this review.
Besides its draconian screengrab and keystroke monitoring, Hubstaff does not do a very good job allowing for deeper shift oversight. For instance, Hubstaff doesn’t allow advanced tracking. If you operate a trucking business and you are less concerned about how many hours a trucker drove than the distance driven, then there is no way to handle that in Hubstaff. Users can add notes to an empty text field, but that information won’t be blended into reports. This means that you can’t use it to find out about who’s working, how they’re functioning, and what they’re producing (other than the number of hours tracked). TSheets not only gives you this choice, it gives you the ability to make six additional customizable innovative tracking fields. You can even put in a question for every clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an incident? Yes. No.”) And the system forces the consumer to reply to the questions at the close of each change or they will not have the ability to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is about monitoring work, the application does not permit for IP address restrictions, which means your employees can say they’re working from the workplace but they could actually be operating from a cruise boat in the Bahamas (unless they’re using the cell program to track time). This is a standard feature that’s available in almost every other tool we tested. Hubstaff also doesn’t enable admins to need users to snap a photograph when they report to work. I guess it is overkill to generate someone take a selfie right before you get started recording their screen and tracking their keystrokes, but TSheets lets you place this as a necessity (which makes sense, particularly if you’re monitoring tasks done outside of a computer, like electronic, construction, or amusement work). The program also does not allow users clock in via a phone call, which is a component TSheets and other service providers make readily available for employees 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 employee monitoring tools. Hubstaff’s employee tracking features include keystroke logging, URL and application monitoring, GPS and location tracking, and action screenshots.
Once you place your users and they download the timer program onto their server, the desktop program not only tracks 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 screen but any attached monitors as well. Hubstaff does not log keys but it will monitor the action provided via the mouse and keyboard, giving companies a calculation of just how busy the employee is. This info all winds up on the Hubstaff dashboard from the Activity tab. This is where you can then pick an individual from the drop-down menu to see their screenshots correlated with activity data.
When it comes to application and URL monitoring, Hubstaff goes beyond just tracking time to learn what websites and programs an employee opened or visited and how long they had been there. The Reports module can then run custom queries on vectors like program usage mapped against time and action. Hubstaff integrates with project and task management tools such as Asana and Trello to filter reports by particular projects or tasks to monitor productivity.
One unique employee monitoring feature supplied is GPS location monitoring through Hubstaff’s mobile app. While the mobile app can’t take screenshots or capture mobile app and site activity, it allows you to track and log location for workers working in the area. While the thickness of monitoring data and surveillance features can’t measure up to a grid application for example Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for employee monitoring, Hubstaff includes a useful selection of features for companies that want a bit more oversight. Hubstaff Reviews
Hubstaff is an easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time monitoring tool. If you are diligent about tracking employee behavior while on the clock, then there is no better software available than Hubstaff. You will have the ability to log screenshots, track keystroke volume, and route movements via GPS tracking.
Unfortunately, if you’re looking for a platform which goes the extra mile to allow customization, irregular data entry, or a much more sophisticated reporting arrangement, then Hubstaff will not be perfect for you. In addition, in case you choose a different system, your employees will thank you for not requiring them to download a secondary app for tracking time–particularly once you consider that every other instrument we examined makes this potential within the confines of their web-based UI. Hubstaff Reviews