Introduction Productivity Software 2017
When choosing a time tracking tool, it’s important to understand the various kinds of tools available. Tools such as Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all feature powerful time monitoring features for professional services businesses. However, the time tracking features in such tools are available only within larger project management (PM) suites. As a result, you are paying a lot more cash for things like file storage, in-app discussion, progress reports, and change administration. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you’ll find pure play time monitoring tools like Hubstaff (which starts at $5 per month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice instrument for time tracking. Productivity Software 2017
Characteristics and Usage
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) was created with an attractive left-rail blue navigation bar which leaves lots of room around the right-hand 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 this day and how many hours they’ve worked over the previous seven days. You will also see a list of every member, their latest jobs, and how busy they’ve been over the past week. This is a strong PM data visualization that lets you instantly differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it immediately calls to attention projects which are becoming more than sufficient attention and projects that are being neglected.
There are two ways to add time in Hubstaff: You are able to build manual timesheets with previous hours worked, or you can use the stopwatch feature on Hubstaff’s native desktop program. 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 shift, you add the time to your own timesheet, and you also sign off on it. This is a fairly standard method of tracking time. Regrettably, because Hubstaff does not allow you to add future time, you can not use the platform for a shift planner. Administrators can allow users manually edit previously submitted timesheets, and they can induce users to require a motive to ensure they’re really adding hours they worked. Admins may also set up the system to let users to begin monitoring time if they have not clocked into the system in a while.
The second, and most bothersome, way of tracking moment in Hubstaff is by using the stopwatch feature. In every solution we tested, this component is available within the confines of your internet browser–every alternative that is, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you’re expected to download an native desktop application that lives within a separate window. In it, you can select your job, press Start, and your timer will start counting. When you are done, your activity and your screenshots will be transmitted to the principal hub. The native app will take a picture 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 to not capture sensitive information on every grab, but a lot of this display is left unsullied you’ll still get a sense of whether the display is really on work-related or play-related content. This is an annoyingly complex and convoluted way to manually monitor time, especially if you’re jumping from task to task through the day. Hubstaff must discover a way to bring the stopwatch and screengrab components 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 is 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 performed by your employee by capturing location data at different stages.
The Schedules tab lets you assign times and dates for employees to do the job. It is possible to put a minimum number of hours to work, a lunch break duration, and you’ll be able to allow it to be a recurring shift. The program’s reporting applications is terribly basic: You’ll get access to weekly, daily, project, and member view reports in addition to a”habit” report which lets you filter information from the aforementioned reports. When compared to the PM options within this course, Hubstaff’s reporting is downright embarrassing consequently, if your target is to learn and evolve based on if and how your employees handle time, you’d be much better off working with Zoho Projects, our Editors’ Choice for PM.
Admins receive notifications once they have attained weekly staffing and funding limits. Invoices are automatically calculated and made based on the time each employee worked, in addition to his or her related pay rate. You can set up automatic payroll through PayPal, which enables you to automate payments based on time tracked inside the application. Remember: Users don’t need to send time through for acceptance, therefore automatic payments will be made whether workers were wrong or right about 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 so, if you’re worried about making false payments, then it is possible to set PayPal payments to guide. Productivity Software 2017
Cost And Options
Hubstaff has been constructed to give you Big Brother-level oversight into when workers are working, what they are doing while they operate, and what you want to cover them as soon as the job is done. The Fundamental $5-per-month plan provides you access to easy time monitoring tools, a worker payment program supervisor, 24/7 support, and user settings which can be handled in an employee-by-employee basis. Additionally, this program enables you to keep track of whether your employees are working by letting you record screenshots while they function in addition to monitor keyboard and mouse activity during changes. Of the five tools we analyzed, Hubstaff is the only instrument that offered this amount of insight into the way that workers are progressing. Although screen and keyboard monitoring 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 program includes all you’ll discover in the Basic plan, but you will also get access to Hubstaff’s application programming interface (API) to integrate the application with other third party software. The Premium bundle also has a lightweight schedulingtool that gives administrators the capability to assign changes and delegate tasks from inside the console. Premium clients may also use the tool to make invoices and make PayPal payments automatically. Customers that pay annually will get two months free (for both price tiers).
Compared to TSheets, its closest competitor in our roundup, Hubstaff is fairly priced, particularly given the added monitoring features that are unavailable in competitive tools. TSheets offers a basic free account, in addition to a $4-per-user-per-month accounts that charges a $16 base fee per month for groups with fewer than 100 users, along with a $80 foundation fee per month for teams with more than 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’re more interested in these hulky PM solutions, then you will want to pony up a little more money. Mavenlink’s cheapest plan that includes time tracking costs $39 per user per month. Zoho’s cheapest time monitoring plan is $25 per month for an unlimited number of consumers (that is a pretty good deal if you want all of the extra PM attributes ). Wrike’s cheapest time tracking plan costs $24.80 per user per month.
What Should Be Added
Editor’s note: Since our original overview of Hubstaff, the company has released a major 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 monitor monitoring. We are going to be analyzing these attributes shortly and you’ll see the results in an upcoming update to this review.
Besides its draconian screengrab and keystroke monitoring, Hubstaff doesn’t do a very good job allowing for deeper change supervision. For instance, Hubstaff does not allow advanced tracking. If you operate a trucking company and you’re less concerned about the number of hours each trucker drove than the distance driven, then there’s no way to manage that in Hubstaff. Users can add notes to a empty text field, but that data will not be blended into reports. As a consequence, you can not use it to find out about who’s functioning, how they’re functioning, and what they’re generating (aside from the number of hours monitored ). TSheets not only gives you this choice, it gives you the ability to make six additional customizable advanced monitoring fields. You can even add a query for every clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an incident? Yes. No.”) And the system forces the user to respond to the questions at the end of every shift or else they will not be able to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is all about tracking work, the application does not permit for IP address restrictions, so your employees can say they are working from the office but they can actually be operating from a cruise boat in the Bahamas (unless they are using the cell app to track time). This is a normal feature that’s available in virtually every other instrument we analyzed. Hubstaff also doesn’t enable admins to need users to snap a photo when they report to work. I suppose it is overkill to generate someone take a selfie right before you start recording their screen and tracking their keystrokes, but TSheets enables you to place this as a requirement (which makes sense, especially if you’re tracking tasks done out of a computer, such as retail, building, or entertainment work). The program also does not let users clock via a telephone 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 Enormous Brother-like attributes factor into time monitoring. However, the platform also has a lot of the hallmarks of worker monitoring tools. Hubstaff’s employee tracking attributes include keystroke logging, URL and application tracking, GPS and place monitoring, and activity screenshots.
Once you place your users and they download the timer program onto their machine, the desktop program not only monitors 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 display but any attached monitors as well. Hubstaff does not log keys but it does track the action provided via the mouse and keyboard, giving employers a calculation of just how busy the employee is. This data all winds up around the Hubstaff dashboard in the Activity tab. This is where you can then select an individual in the drop-down menu to see their screenshots connected with action data.
When it comes to application and URL tracking, Hubstaff goes beyond simply tracking time to learn what sites and programs a worker opened or visited and how long they had been there. The Reports module may then run custom questions on vectors like app usage mapped against time and activity. Hubstaff incorporates with project and job management tools such as Asana and Trello to filter reports by particular tasks or projects to monitor productivity.
1 unique employee monitoring feature offered is GPS location tracking through Hubstaff’s mobile app. While the mobile app can’t take screenshots or catch mobile app and website activity, it lets you monitor and log location for workers working in the area. While the thickness of tracking surveillance and data features can not measure up to a grid application for example Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for worker monitoring, Hubstaff has a helpful selection of attributes for employers that want a little more oversight. Productivity Software 2017
Hubstaff is a easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time monitoring tool. If you are diligent about monitoring employee behaviour while on the clock, then there’s no better software accessible than Hubstaff. You’ll have the ability to log screenshots, track keystroke volume, and route movements via GPS monitoring.
Regrettably, if you’re trying to find a platform that goes the excess mile to allow customization, irregular information entry, or even a more sophisticated reporting arrangement, then Hubstaff won’t be right for you. In addition, in case you opt for a different program, your employees will thank you for not needing them to obtain a secondary program for monitoring time–especially once you consider that every other instrument we reviewed makes this possible within the boundaries of their online UI. Productivity Software 2017