Background Log Time Online
When picking a time monitoring tool, it’s important to understand the various kinds of tools available. Tools such as Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all include powerful time monitoring features for professional services companies. However, the time tracking features in these tools are available only within larger project management (PM) suites. Because of this, you’re paying much more money for things like file storage, in-app chat, progress reports, and shift administration. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you will find pure play time tracking tools such as Hubstaff (which begins at $5 a month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice tool for time tracking. Log Time Online
Attributes and Utilization
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) was created with a appealing left-rail blue navigation bar that leaves plenty 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 gives you an overview of how many hours your employees have worked that day and how many hours they have worked over the previous seven days. You’ll also find a list of each member, their most recent jobs, and how busy they have been over the past week. This is a solid PM data visualization that allows you instantly differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it immediately calls to focus projects which are getting more than enough attention and jobs that are being disregarded.
There are two methods to add time in Hubstaff: You are able to construct manual timesheets with previous hours worked, or you can use the stopwatch feature on Hubstaff’s native desktop app. Together with the timesheet attribute, you log in your hours as you probably did with pen and paper during the analog era of time tracking. Essentially, you work your shift, you add time to your timesheet, and you sign off on it. This is a fairly standard method of tracking time. Regrettably, because Hubstaff doesn’t allow you to add future time, you can’t use the platform as a shift planner. Administrators can allow users manually edit formerly submitted timesheets, and they can induce users to need a motive to ensure they’re actually adding hours they worked. Admins may also set the system up to let users to begin monitoring time if they have not clocked into the system in a while.
The next, and most bothersome, way of tracking time in Hubstaff is using the stopwatch feature. In each solution we tested, this component can be found within the boundaries of your web browser–every alternative that’s, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you are expected to download a native desktop application that lives within another window. In it, you can select your project, press Start, and your own timer will start counting. When you’re 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 based on how frequently the admin wants to spy on employees. Screenshots can be partially blurred not to capture sensitive information on each grab, but enough of this screen is left unsullied that you’ll still get a sense of if the display is on work-related or play-related content. This can be an annoyingly complicated and complicated way 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 programs is precisely the same as it’s on the desktop app. The mobile apps let admins monitor motions via GPS tracking. This gives you an overview of just how much movement was performed by your worker by capturing location information at distinct stages.
The Schedules tab lets you assign dates and times for workers to do the job. It is possible to set a minimum number of hours to operate, a lunch break interval, and you can allow it to be a recurring shift. The program’s reporting software is terribly basic: You will receive access to weekly, daily, project, and member view reports as well as a”custom” report that allows you filter data from the above reports. In comparison to the PM solutions within this course, Hubstaff’s reporting is utterly embarrassing consequently, if your goal is to learn and evolve based on when and how your employees manage time, you would be much better off working with 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 based on the time each worker worked, as well as his or her associated pay rate. It is possible to set up automatic citizenship through PayPal, which enables you to automate payments based on time monitored within the application. Keep in mind: Users don’t need to send time for acceptance, so automatic payments will be made whether employees were wrong or right about the number of hours that they worked. There is no reminder for supervisors to double-check every timesheet before automatic payments move out so, if you are worried about making false payments, then it is possible to place PayPal payments to manual. Log Time Online
Cost And Options
Hubstaff has been constructed to provide you with Big Brother-level oversight into when employees are working, what they are doing while they work, and what you want to cover them when the work is finished. The Fundamental $5-per-month plan provides you access to simple time monitoring tools, an employee payment schedule supervisor, 24/7 support, and user settings that can be managed in an employee-by-employee basis. Moreover, this program enables you to keep track of whether your employees are operating by allowing you record screenshots while they function in addition to monitor mouse and keyboard activity during shifts. Of the five tools we analyzed, Hubstaff is the only tool which offered this level of insight into the way that 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 wanted (more about this later).
The $9-per-user-per-month Premium plan includes all you’ll find in the fundamental program, but you’ll also get access to Hubstaff’s application programming interface (API) to integrate the tool with other third party software. The Premium package also comes with a lightweight schedulingtool that gives administrators the power to assign changes and assign tasks from within the console. Premium clients may also use the application to create invoices and create PayPal payments mechanically. Clients that pay annually will get two months free (for both cost tiers).
In comparison to TSheets, its nearest competitor in our roundup, Hubstaff is reasonably priced, especially given the extra monitoring features that are unavailable in competitive tools. TSheets supplies a basic free accounts, as well as a $4-per-user-per-month account that costs a $16 base fee per month for groups with fewer than 100 users, along with an $80 base fee per month for teams 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 level.
If you are more interested in those hulky PM solutions, then you will 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 tracking plan is $25 a month for an infinite number of users (that is a pretty solid deal if you need all the excess PM features). Wrike’s cheapest time monitoring plan costs $24.80 per user per month.
What Ought to Be Added
Editor’s note: Since our first overview of Hubstaff, the business has released a significant update in late 2018 that specifically addressed certain feature flaws or omissions, including adding a web timer, fleshing out coverage choices, and adding activity levels and screen monitoring. We are going to be analyzing these features 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 oversight. For example, Hubstaff doesn’t allow advanced tracking. If you operate a trucking company and you’re less concerned about how many hours each trucker drove than the distance driven, then there’s no way to manage this in Hubstaff. Users may add notes to a empty text field, but that data won’t be blended into accounts. As a consequence, you can not use it to find out about who is working, how they’re functioning, and what they are producing (aside from the amount of hours tracked). TSheets not only provides you this choice, it provides you the ability to create six extra customizable advanced monitoring fields. You can also add a question for every clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an episode? Yes. No.”) And the system forces the user to respond to the questions at the end of every shift or they will not be able to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is about tracking work, the tool does not permit for IP address limitations, so 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 are using the mobile app to monitor time). This is a standard feature that’s available in almost every other tool we analyzed. Hubstaff also does not enable admins to require users to snap a photograph when they report to work. I suppose it is overkill to make someone take a selfie right before you start recording their screen and tracking their keystrokes, but TSheets enables you to place this as a necessity (which makes sense, especially if you’re tracking tasks done outside of a computer, like electronic, 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 readily available for employees who don’t have a smartphone.
Tracking Employee Work
We have touched on how some of Hubstaff’s more Big Brother-like attributes factor into time tracking. However, the platform also offers many 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.
Once 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, such as three screenshots each minute. This applies not just to the user’s main screen but any attached monitors as well. Hubstaff doesn’t log keys however, it will track the action provided via the mouse and computer keyboard, giving companies a calculation of just how active the employee is. This data all winds up around the Hubstaff dashboard from the Task tab. This is where you can then select an individual from the drop-down menu to view their screenshots connected with action data.
If it comes to application and URL tracking, Hubstaff goes beyond just tracking time to see what websites and programs a worker opened or visited and how long they had been there. The Reports module may then run custom questions on vectors such as app usage mapped against time and action. Hubstaff incorporates with job and job management tools like Asana and Trello to filter reports by specific projects or tasks to track productivity.
One unique employee monitoring feature offered is GPS location monitoring through Hubstaff’s mobile program. While the mobile app can not take screenshots or catch mobile app and site activity, it lets you monitor and log place for workers working in the field. While the thickness of monitoring data and surveillance features can not measure up to a powerhouse tool for example Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for worker tracking, Hubstaff has a helpful selection of features for employers that want a bit more oversight. Log Time Online
Hubstaff is a easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time tracking tool. If you are diligent about tracking employee behaviour while on the clockthen there is no better program accessible than Hubstaff. You will have the ability to log screenshots, track keystroke volume, and path moves via GPS tracking.
Regrettably, if you’re trying to find a platform which goes the excess mile to allow customization, irregular data entry, or even a much more sophisticated reporting structure, then Hubstaff will not be perfect for you. Additionally, in case you choose another system, your employees will thank you for not requiring them to obtain a secondary program for monitoring time–particularly once you consider that every other tool we reviewed makes this possible within the confines of their web-based UI. Log Time Online