Background Online Work Tracker
When picking a time tracking tool, it is important to comprehend the many different kinds of tools available. Tools such as Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all include robust time monitoring features for professional services businesses. On the other hand, the time tracking features in such tools are available only within larger project management (PM) suites. Because of this, you’re paying much more cash for things such as file storage, in-app discussion, progress reports, and shift management. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you will find pure play time monitoring tools like Hubstaff (which begins at $5 a month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice tool for time tracking. Online Work Tracker
Attributes and Utilization
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) was created with an attractive left-rail blue navigation bar that leaves plenty of room around the right-hand side of your screen for data entry and analysis. When you first log into the system, you’ll be taken to the main dashboard, which gives you an overview of the number of hours your employees have worked this day and how many hours they’ve worked over the past seven days. You’ll also find a list of every member, their latest tasks, and how active they have been over the past 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 neglected.
There are two ways to add time in Hubstaff: You are able to build manual timesheets with past hours worked, or you can use the stopwatch feature on Hubstaff’s native desktop app. With the timesheet feature, you log your hours as you probably did with pencil and paper during the analog era of time monitoring. Basically, if you work your change, you add time to your own timesheet, and you 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 for a shift planner. Administrators can allow users manually edit previously submitted timesheets, and they’re able to force users to require a reason to guarantee they’re actually adding hours they worked. Admins can also set up the system to let users to begin monitoring time if they haven’t clocked to the system in a little while.
The next, and most bothersome, way of tracking time in Hubstaff is using the stopwatch feature. In every solution we tested, this component is available within the confines of your web browserevery solution that’s, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you’re required to download an native desktop application that resides within a separate window. In it, you can choose your project, press Start, and your own timer will begin counting. When you’re done, your action and your screenshots will be transmitted to the principal hub. The native program is going to take a photo at random periods of up to 3 shots per hour depending on how often the admin wants to spy on employees. Screenshots can be partly blurred to not record sensitive information on each grab, but a lot of the display is left unsullied you’ll still get a feeling of if the screen is on work-related or play-related content. This can be an annoyingly complicated and convoluted means to manually monitor time, especially if you’re jumping from task to task throughout the day. Hubstaff must find 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 exactly the same as it is on the desktop program. The mobile programs let admins monitor movements via GPS monitoring. This gives you an summary of just how much movement was performed by your worker by capturing location information at different stages.
The Schedules tab lets you assign dates and times for workers to work. You can put a minimum number of hours to operate, a lunch break duration, and you can make it a recurring change. The tool’s reporting applications is horribly basic: You will get access to weekly, daily, project, and member view reports in addition to 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 downright embarrassing consequently, if your target is to learn and evolve according to when 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’ve attained weekly staffing and budget limitations. Invoices are automatically calculated and created based on the time each employee 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. Remember: Consumers do not have to send time through for acceptance, so automatic payments will be made whether workers were wrong or right concerning the number of hours that they worked. There’s no reminder for supervisors to double-check each timesheet before automatic payments move out thus, if you’re worried about making bogus payments, then it is possible to set PayPal payments to guide. Online Work Tracker
Price And Alternatives
Hubstaff has been constructed to provide you with Big Brother-level oversight into when workers are working, what they’re doing while they operate, and what you want to pay them as soon as the work is finished. The Basic $5-per-month program provides you access to easy time tracking tools, an employee payment schedule manager, 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 your employees are working by letting you document screenshots while they function as well as monitor mouse and keyboard action during changes. Of the five tools we’ve analyzed, Hubstaff is the only instrument that provided this level of insight into how workers are progressing. Although screen and keyboard tracking are useful (albeit over-reaching) attributes for a change monitor, Hubstaff’s implementation leaves much to be wanted (more about this later).
The $9-per-user-per-month Premium plan includes everything you’ll find in the Basic program, but you will also have access to Hubstaff’s application programming interface (API) to integrate the tool with other third-party software. The Premium package also has a lightweight schedulingtool that gives administrators the capability to assign changes and assign tasks from inside the console. Premium customers may also use the tool to create invoices and make PayPal payments mechanically. Customers 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 supplies a fundamental free account, as well as a $4-per-user-per-month account that charges a $16 base fee per month for groups who have fewer than 100 users, along with an $80 base fee per month for teams with more than a hundred users. The base fee, which Hubstaff does not charge, makes TSheets slightly more costly than Hubstaff, even at Hubstaff’s Premium level.
If you are more interested in these hulky PM solutions, then you will need to pony up a little more cash. Mavenlink’s cheapest program that includes time monitoring costs $39 per user per month. Zoho’s cheapest time tracking plan is $25 per month for an infinite number of consumers (that is a pretty solid deal if you need all of the extra PM features). Wrike’s cheapest time monitoring plan prices $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 coverage choices, and adding activity levels and monitor tracking. We’ll be testing these features shortly and you will see the results in an upcoming update to this review.
Aside from its draconian screengrab and keystroke monitoring, Hubstaff does not do a very good job allowing for deeper change supervision. By way of example, Hubstaff doesn’t allow advanced monitoring. If you run a trucking company and you are less concerned about how many hours a trucker drove than the distance driven, then there’s no way to manage this in Hubstaff. Users may add notes to an empty text field, but that data won’t be mixed into accounts. This means you can not use it to find out about who is working, how they are working, and what they are generating (aside from the number of hours tracked). TSheets not only gives you this choice, it gives you the ability to create six additional customizable innovative tracking fields. You might also put in a query for every single clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an episode? Yes. No.”) Along with the system forces the user to respond to the questions at the end of each shift or they will not have the ability to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is all about tracking work, the tool doesn’t allow for IP address restrictions, which means your workers 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 mobile program to track time). This is a normal feature that’s available in almost every other instrument we analyzed. Hubstaff also doesn’t enable admins to require users to snap a photograph if they report to work. I suppose it is overkill to make someone take a selfie right before you start recording their display and tracking their keystrokes, but TSheets lets you place this as a requirement (which makes sense, particularly if you’re tracking tasks done out of a computer, like retail, building, or entertainment work). The program also does not let users clock in via a telephone call, which can be a component TSheets along with other service providers make available for workers who don’t have a smartphone.
Tracking Employee Work
We have 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 monitoring tools. Hubstaff’s employee tracking features include keystroke logging, URL and program monitoring, GPS and location tracking, and action screenshots.
As soon as you set your users and they download the timer program onto their machine, the desktop app not only monitors time but will take screenshots randomly or in custom intervals, for example three screenshots each minute. This applies not just to the user’s most important display but any connected monitors as well. Hubstaff does not log keys however, it does track the action provided through the mouse and keyboard, giving companies a calculation of just how busy the employee is. This info all winds up on the Hubstaff dashboard in the Task tab. This is where you can then pick a user in the drop-down menu to see their screenshots connected with action data.
If it comes to program and URL tracking, Hubstaff goes beyond just tracking time to learn what websites and programs an employee opened or visited and how long they were there. The Reports module may subsequently run custom queries on vectors like app usage mapped against time and activity. Hubstaff integrates with job and task management tools such as Asana and Trello to filter reports by specific tasks or projects to track productivity.
One unique employee monitoring feature offered is GPS location monitoring through Hubstaff’s mobile program. While the mobile app can’t take screenshots or capture mobile app and site activity, it allows you to track and log place for workers working in the field. While the depth of tracking data and surveillance features can not measure up to a powerhouse tool such as Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for worker tracking, Hubstaff has a useful selection of attributes for employers that want a bit more oversight. Online Work Tracker
Hubstaff is a easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time tracking tool. If you’re diligent about monitoring employee behavior while on the clock, then there’s no better program available than Hubstaff. You will be able to log screenshots, monitor keystroke volume, and path movements via GPS monitoring.
Regrettably, if you’re trying to find a platform which goes the extra mile to enable customization, irregular information entry, or even a much more advanced reporting arrangement, then Hubstaff won’t be right for you. Additionally, in case you choose another program, your employees will thank you for not requiring them to obtain a secondary app for monitoring time–especially when you consider that every other tool we reviewed makes this possible within the boundaries of their web-based UI. Online Work Tracker