Intro Productivity Software Explanation
When picking a time tracking tool, it is important to understand the various types of tools out there. Tools such as Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all feature powerful time monitoring features for professional services businesses. However, the time tracking features in these tools are available only within bigger project management (PM) suites. As a result, you’re 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 will find pure play time monitoring tools like Hubstaff (which begins at $5 a month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice instrument for time tracking. Productivity Software Explanation
Attributes and Utilization
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) is designed with an attractive left-rail blue navigation bar which 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 summary of the number of hours your employees have worked that day and how many hours they’ve worked over the previous seven days. You’ll also find a list of every member, their latest tasks, and how busy they’ve been over the past week. This is a strong PM data visualization which lets you instantly differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it immediately calls to focus projects which are getting more than sufficient focus and projects that are being disregarded.
There are two methods to put in 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 app. With the timesheet attribute, you log your hours as you likely did with pen and paper during the analog era of time monitoring. Basically, if you work your change, you add 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 let you add future time, you can not use the platform as a shift organizer. Administrators can let users manually edit previously submitted timesheets, and they’re able to force users to need a reason to ensure they’re really adding hours that they worked. Admins can also set the system up to remind users to start tracking time if they haven’t clocked into the system in a while.
The next, and most bothersome, way of tracking time in Hubstaff is by using the stopwatch feature. In every solution we analyzed, this component is available within the confines of your internet browser–every alternative that is, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you are required to download an native desktop application that lives within another window. In it, you can select your project, press Start, along with your timer will begin counting. When you’re done, your action and your screenshots will be transmitted to the principal hub. The native app is going to take a picture at random periods of up to three shots per hour depending on how often the admin would like to spy on workers. Screenshots can be partly blurred not to capture sensitive information on each grab, but enough of this display is left unsullied you’ll still get a feeling of whether the screen is on work-related or play-related content. This can be an annoyingly complex and convoluted means to manually monitor time, particularly if you’re jumping from task to task through the day. Hubstaff must discover a way to add 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 programs is precisely the same as it is on the desktop app. The mobile apps let admins monitor motions via GPS monitoring. This gives you an overview of how much motion was done by your worker by capturing location information at different stages.
The Schedules tab enables you to assign dates and times for workers to do the job. It is possible to put a minimum number of hours to work, a lunch break interval, and you’ll be able to allow it to be a recurring change. The tool’s reporting applications is horribly basic: You’ll get access to weekly, daily, job, and member view reports as well as a”habit” report which allows you filter data from the above reports. In comparison to the PM solutions in this course, Hubstaff’s coverage is utterly embarrassing so, if your goal is to understand and evolve according to when and how your employees handle time, you’d be much better off working using Zoho Projects, our Editors’ Choice for PM.
Admins receive notifications when they have attained weekly staffing and funding limits. Invoices are automatically calculated and created depending on the time each employee worked, in addition to his or her associated pay rate. It is possible to set up automatic payroll through PayPal, which enables you to automate payments based on time monitored inside the application. Keep in mind: Consumers do not need to send time through for acceptance, so automatic payments will be made whether workers were right or wrong about the number of hours that they worked. There’s no reminder for supervisors to double-check every timesheet ahead of automatic payments move out thus, if you are concerned about making bogus payments, then you can place PayPal payments to guide. Productivity Software Explanation
Cost And Options
Hubstaff was built 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 job is finished. The Fundamental $5-per-month plan gives you access to easy time tracking tools, an employee payment program manager, 24/7 support, and user preferences which can be handled in an employee-by-employee basis. Additionally, this plan lets you keep track of whether your employees are operating by allowing you document screenshots while they function as well as monitor keyboard and mouse action during changes. Of the five tools we tested, Hubstaff is the only instrument which provided this level of insight into how workers are progressing. Although keyboard and screen monitoring are useful (albeit over-reaching) features for a shift monitor, Hubstaff’s implementation leaves much to be wanted (more on this later).
The $9-per-user-per-month Premium plan includes all you’ll discover in the fundamental program, but you’ll also get access to Hubstaff’s application programming interface (API) to integrate the application with other third-party software. The Premium package also comes with a lightweight schedulingtool that gives administrators the capability to assign shifts and delegate tasks from within the console. Premium clients can also use the tool to create invoices and make PayPal payments automatically. Clients that pay yearly will get two weeks free (for both price tiers).
In comparison to TSheets, its closest competition in our roundup, Hubstaff is fairly priced, particularly given the added tracking features that are unavailable in competitive resources. TSheets supplies a basic free account, as well as a $4-per-user-per-month accounts that charges a $16 base fee per month for teams who have fewer than 100 users, along with an $80 foundation fee per month for teams with over a hundred users. The base fee, which Hubstaff doesn’t charge, makes TSheets slightly more expensive than Hubstaff, even at Hubstaff’s Premium degree.
If you are more interested in these hulky PM alternatives, then you’ll need to pony up a little more cash. Mavenlink’s cheapest plan that includes time monitoring costs $39 per user per month. Zoho’s cheapest time monitoring plan is $25 per month for an infinite number of consumers (that is a pretty good deal if you want all of the excess PM features). Wrike’s lowest time tracking plan prices $24.80 per user per month.
What Should Be Added
Editor’s note: Since our first 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 web timer, fleshing out coverage options, and adding action levels and monitor monitoring. We are going to be analyzing these features shortly and you’ll see the results in an upcoming update to this review.
Aside from its draconian screengrab and keystroke tracking, Hubstaff does not do a very good job allowing for deeper change oversight. By way of 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 manage this in Hubstaff. Users may add notes to a empty text field, but that information will not be blended into reports. This means that you can not use it to find out about who is working, how they’re working, and what they’re producing (aside from the number of hours monitored ). TSheets not only gives you this choice, it provides you the ability to create six extra customizable advanced tracking fields. You can even put in a query for every clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an incident? Yes. No.”) Along with the system forces the user to respond to the queries at the close of every shift or else they will not be able to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is all about tracking work, the tool does not allow for IP address restrictions, which means your employees can say they are working from the office but they can actually be working from a cruise ship in the Bahamas (unless they’re using the mobile app to monitor 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 somebody take a selfie before you start recording their display and tracking their keystrokes, but TSheets enables you to place this as a necessity (which makes sense, especially if you’re monitoring tasks done out of a computer, such as retail, building, or entertainment work). The software also does not allow users clock in via a telephone call, which can be a component TSheets along with other service providers make readily available for employees who do not have a smartphone.
Monitoring Employee Work
We’ve touched on how some of Hubstaff’s more Enormous Brother-like features factor into time tracking. However, the platform also offers many of the hallmarks of worker tracking tools. Hubstaff’s employee monitoring attributes include keystroke logging, URL and application tracking, GPS and place monitoring, and activity screenshots.
Once you set your users and they download the timer program onto their server, the desktop app not only tracks time but will take screenshots randomly or at custom intervals, for example three screenshots per minute. This applies not only to the user’s most important display but any connected monitors as well. Hubstaff doesn’t log keys however, it will monitor the activity provided through the mouse and computer keyboard, giving companies a calculation of just how active the employee is. This info all winds up around the Hubstaff dashboard from the Task tab. This is where you can then pick an individual in the drop-down menu to view their screenshots correlated with activity data.
When it comes to application and URL monitoring, Hubstaff goes beyond simply tracking time to learn what websites and programs a worker opened or visited and how long they were there. The Reports section can subsequently run custom queries on vectors like program usage mapped against time and action. Hubstaff incorporates with project and task management tools such as Asana and Trello to filter reports by specific projects or tasks to monitor productivity.
1 unique employee monitoring feature supplied is GPS location monitoring through Hubstaff’s mobile program. While the cellular app can not take screenshots or catch mobile app and website activity, it allows you to monitor and log location for employees working in the area. While the depth of monitoring data and surveillance features can not measure up to a powerhouse tool for example Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for employee tracking, Hubstaff has a useful selection of features for employers that want a bit more oversight. Productivity Software Explanation
Hubstaff is a easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time tracking tool. If you’re diligent about tracking employee behaviour while on the clockthen there is no better program available than Hubstaff. You’ll be able to log screenshots, monitor keystroke volume, and path movements via GPS tracking.
Regrettably, if you’re looking for a platform which goes the excess mile to enable customization, irregular data entry, or a much more advanced reporting structure, then Hubstaff won’t be right for you. In addition, in case you opt for another program, your employees will thank you for not requiring them to download a secondary program for monitoring time–especially once you consider that every other tool we reviewed makes this possible within the boundaries of their web-based UI. Productivity Software Explanation