Intro Productivity Report
When choosing a time tracking tool, it’s important to understand the many different types of tools out there. 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 as part of bigger project management (PM) suites. Because of this, you’re paying much more cash for things like file storage, in-app discussion, progress reports, and change management. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you’ll discover pure play time tracking tools such as Hubstaff (which begins at $5 a month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice instrument for time tracking. Productivity Report
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 right-hand side of your screen for data entry and analysis. When you first log into the system, you will be taken to the main dashboard, which provides you an overview 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 find a list of each member, their latest tasks, and how busy they’ve been over the last week. This is a strong PM data visualization that allows you immediately differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it immediately calls to focus projects that are getting more than enough focus and projects that are being neglected.
There are two ways to put in 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. Together with the timesheet feature, you log your hours as you likely did with pencil and paper during the analog age of time monitoring. Essentially, you work your change, you add time to your own timesheet, and you sign off on it. This is a pretty standard procedure of monitoring time. Regrettably, because Hubstaff doesn’t let you add future time, you can’t use the platform for a shift organizer. Administrators can let users manually edit formerly submitted timesheets, and they’re able to induce users to require a reason to guarantee they’re really adding hours they worked. Admins can also set the system up to remind users to start monitoring time should they haven’t clocked to the machine in a little while.
The second, and most frustrating, way of monitoring time in Hubstaff is by using the stopwatch feature. In each solution we tested, this component can be found within the confines of your internet browserevery alternative that is, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you’re expected to download a native desktop application that resides within another window. In it, you can select your project, press Start, along with your timer will start counting. When you’re done, your action and your screenshots will be transmitted to the principal hub. The native program will take a picture at random periods of up to 3 shots per hour depending on how often the admin wants to spy on workers. Screenshots can be partially fuzzy not to capture sensitive information on every grab, but enough of the display is left unsullied you’ll still get a sense of whether the screen is really on work-related or play-related content. This is an annoyingly complex and complicated means to manually monitor 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 motions via GPS tracking. This provides you an summary of how much movement was performed by your employee by capturing location data at distinct stages.
The Schedules tab enables you to assign dates and times for workers to work. It is possible to set a minimum number of hours to work, a lunch break duration, and you can make it a recurring change. The program’s reporting software is terribly basic: You will receive access to weekly, daily, project, and member view reports as well as a”habit” report that lets you filter data from the aforementioned reports. In comparison to the PM options in this class, Hubstaff’s coverage is utterly embarrassing consequently, if your goal is to learn and evolve based on when and how your employees manage time, you’d be much better off working using Zoho Projects, our Editors’ Choice for PM.
Admins receive notifications when they’ve reached weekly staffing and funding limitations. Invoices are automatically calculated and created depending on the time each worker worked, as well as their related pay rate. You can set up automatic payroll through PayPal, which enables you to automate payments based on time tracked inside the tool. Keep in mind: Users don’t need to send time through for acceptance, therefore automatic payments will be made whether workers were right or wrong about the amount of hours 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 false payments, then you can place PayPal payments to manual. Productivity Report
Price And Options
Hubstaff was constructed to provide you with Big Brother-level oversight into when employees are working, what they are doing while they work, and what you really want to pay them as soon as the work is finished. The Fundamental $5-per-month program provides you access to simple time tracking tools, a worker payment program manager, 24/7 support, and user settings that can be managed on an employee-by-employee basis. Moreover, this plan enables you to keep track of whether your employees are operating by letting you document screenshots while they work in addition to monitor keyboard and mouse activity during shifts. Of the five tools we’ve analyzed, Hubstaff is the only instrument that offered this amount of insight into the way that employees are progressing. Although screen and keyboard monitoring are helpful (albeit over-reaching) features for a shift monitor, Hubstaff’s implementation leaves much to be desired (more on this later).
The $9-per-user-per-month Premium program includes all you’ll find in the Basic program, but you’ll also have access to Hubstaff’s application programming interface (API) to integrate the tool with other third party software. The Premium bundle also comes with a lightweight schedulingtool that gives administrators the power to assign shifts and assign tasks from inside the console. Premium customers can also use the tool to make invoices and create PayPal payments automatically. Clients that pay yearly will get two months free (for both cost tiers).
Compared to TSheets, its closest competition in our roundup, Hubstaff is reasonably priced, particularly given the added monitoring features that are unavailable in competitive resources. 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 with fewer than 100 users, along with an $80 foundation fee per month for teams with over 100 users. The base fee, which Hubstaff doesn’t charge, makes TSheets marginally more costly than Hubstaff, even at Hubstaff’s Premium level.
If you are more interested in these hulky PM alternatives, then you’ll want to pony up a little more money. Mavenlink’s cheapest plan that includes time tracking prices $39 per user per month. Zoho’s cheapest time tracking plan is $25 a month for an unlimited number of users (which is a fairly good deal if you need all the extra PM attributes ). Wrike’s cheapest 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 business has released a significant upgrade in late 2018 that specifically addressed specific feature flaws or omissions, such as adding a web timer, fleshing out reporting options, and adding activity levels and monitor tracking. We’ll 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 does not do an excellent job allowing for deeper change supervision. By way of example, Hubstaff does not allow advanced tracking. If you run a trucking company and you are 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 an empty text area, but that data will not be blended into accounts. This means you can’t use it to find out about who’s working, how they’re functioning, and what they are generating (other than the amount of hours tracked). TSheets not only provides you this option, it provides you the ability to make six additional customizable advanced monitoring fields. You might even put in a query for every single clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an incident? Yes. No.”) And the system forces the consumer to reply to the questions at the end of every shift or they will not be able to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is all about monitoring work, the application does not allow for IP address limitations, so your workers can say they’re working from the office but they can actually be working from a cruise boat in the Bahamas (unless they are using the mobile app to monitor time). This is a normal feature that’s available in almost every other tool we tested. 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 somebody take a selfie before you get started recording their display and tracking their keystrokes, but TSheets enables you to place this as a requirement (which makes sense, especially if you’re monitoring tasks done out of a computer, such as retail, building, or entertainment work). The program also doesn’t allow users clock via a phone call, which can be a component TSheets along with other service providers make readily available for workers who do not have a smartphone.
Monitoring Employee Work
We have touched on how some of Hubstaff’s more Big Brother-like attributes factor into time tracking. However, the platform also has many of the hallmarks of employee tracking tools. Hubstaff’s employee monitoring features include keystroke logging, URL and application tracking, GPS and place monitoring, and activity screenshots.
As soon as you place your users and they download the timer program onto their server, the desktop program not only monitors time but will require screenshots randomly or at custom intervals, for example three screenshots per minute. This applies not only to the user’s most important screen but any attached monitors as well. Hubstaff does not log keys however, it does monitor the action provided through the mouse and keyboard, providing employers a calculation of just how busy the worker is. This data all winds up around the Hubstaff dashboard from the Task tab. This is where you can then pick an individual from the drop-down menu to view their screenshots connected with action data.
When it comes to application and URL tracking, Hubstaff goes beyond simply tracking time to see what websites and apps an employee visited or opened and how long they had been there. The Reports module can then run custom queries on vectors such as app usage mapped against time and activity. Hubstaff incorporates with project and job management tools like Asana and Trello to filter reports from specific projects or tasks to track productivity.
1 unique employee monitoring feature supplied is GPS location monitoring through Hubstaff’s mobile program. While the mobile app can not take screenshots or capture mobile app and site activity, it allows you to track and log location for employees working in the area. While the thickness of tracking data and surveillance features can not step up to a powerhouse tool such as Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for employee monitoring, Hubstaff includes a helpful choice of features for employers that want a little more oversight. Productivity Report
Hubstaff is a easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time tracking tool. If you’re diligent about monitoring employee behaviour while on the clock, then there is no better program accessible than Hubstaff. You’ll 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 enable customization, irregular data entry, or even a more sophisticated reporting structure, then Hubstaff will not be right for you. Additionally, should you opt for a different program, your employees will thank you for not requiring them to obtain a secondary app for monitoring time–particularly once you consider that every other instrument we examined makes this potential within the boundaries of their web-based UI. Productivity Report