Intro Productivity Software List
When picking a time tracking tool, it is important to understand the many different types of tools available. Tools like Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all include powerful time tracking features for professional services businesses. However, the time tracking features in these tools are available only as part of larger project management (PM) suites. Because of this, you are paying much more money for things such as file storage, in-app chat, progress reports, and shift management. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you will discover pure play time tracking tools such as Hubstaff (which begins at $5 per month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice instrument for time tracking. Productivity Software List
Characteristics and Usage
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) is designed with an attractive left-rail blue navigation bar that leaves plenty of room on the 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 overview of the number of hours your employees have worked that day and the number of hours they’ve worked over the past seven days. You will also find a list of every member, their most recent tasks, and how busy they’ve been over the past week. This is a solid PM data visualization that lets you immediately differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it immediately calls to focus projects which are becoming more than enough attention and projects that are being neglected.
There are two ways to put in time in Hubstaff: You are able to construct manual timesheets with past hours worked, or you may use the stopwatch feature on Hubstaff’s native desktop app. Together with the timesheet attribute, you log in your hours since you likely did with pencil and paper through the analog age 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 procedure of tracking time. Regrettably, because Hubstaff does not let you add future time, you can’t use the platform as a shift planner. Administrators can let users manually edit formerly submitted timesheets, and they’re able to induce users to need a motive to guarantee they’re actually adding hours they worked. Admins can also set the system up to remind users to begin tracking time if they haven’t clocked to the system in a while.
The second, and most frustrating, way of tracking time in Hubstaff is by using the stopwatch feature. In every solution we analyzed, this element is available within the boundaries of your internet browser–every solution that is, 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, along with your own timer will begin counting. When you’re done, your activity and your screenshots will be transmitted to the principal hub. The native program is going to take a picture at random intervals of up to 3 shots per hour based on how often the admin wants to spy on workers. Screenshots can be partly fuzzy to not record sensitive information on each catch, but a lot of this display is left unsullied that you’ll still get a feeling of whether the screen is really on work-related or play-related content. This is an annoyingly complicated and complicated means to manually monitor time, particularly if you’re jumping from task to task throughout the day. Hubstaff must find a way to bring 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 is on the desktop program. The mobile programs let admins monitor movements via GPS monitoring. This gives you an overview of just how much movement was done by your employee by capturing location information at distinct stages.
The Schedules tab lets you assign times and dates for workers to work. You can put a minimum number of hours to operate, a lunch break duration, and you’ll be able to make it a recurring change. The program’s reporting applications is terribly basic: You will receive access to weekly, daily, job, and penis view reports as well as a”habit” report that lets you filter information from the aforementioned reports. In comparison to the PM options within this course, Hubstaff’s reporting is utterly embarrassing so, if your goal is to learn and evolve based on when 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’ve attained weekly staffing and budget limitations. Invoices are automatically calculated and created based on the time each worker 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 tool. Remember: Consumers don’t have to send time for acceptance, so automatic payments will be made whether employees were right or wrong about the amount of hours that they worked. There’s no reminder for supervisors to double-check every timesheet before automatic payments move out thus, if you are worried about making bogus payments, then it is possible to place PayPal payments to guide. Productivity Software List
Cost And Options
Hubstaff was constructed to give you 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 done. The Fundamental $5-per-month plan gives you access to easy time tracking tools, an employee payment program supervisor, 24/7 support, and user settings which can be handled in an employee-by-employee basis. Additionally, this program lets you keep track of whether or not your employees are working by letting you record screenshots while they function as well as monitor keyboard and mouse action during shifts. Of the five tools we’ve tested, Hubstaff is the only tool which provided this amount of insight into how employees are progressing. Although keyboard and screen tracking are helpful (albeit over-reaching) features for a change screen, Hubstaff’s implementation leaves much to be wanted (more on this later).
The 9-per-user-per-month Premium program includes everything you’ll discover in the fundamental plan, but you will 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 provides administrators the power to assign changes and delegate tasks from inside the console. Premium customers may also use the tool to create invoices and make PayPal payments automatically. Clients that pay annually will get two months free (for both cost tiers).
In comparison to TSheets, its closest competitor in our roundup, Hubstaff is reasonably priced, especially given the extra tracking features that are unavailable in competitive resources. TSheets supplies a basic free account, 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 a $80 base fee per month for groups with over a hundred users. The base fee, which Hubstaff does not charge, makes TSheets slightly more expensive than Hubstaff, even in Hubstaff’s Premium degree.
If you’re more interested in these hulky PM alternatives, 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 monitoring plan is $25 a month for an infinite number of consumers (which is a pretty good deal if you want all the excess PM features). Wrike’s lowest time tracking plan costs $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 upgrade in late 2018 that specifically addressed specific feature weaknesses or omissions, including adding a internet timer, fleshing out coverage choices, and adding action levels and monitor monitoring. We’ll be testing these features shortly and you will see the results in an upcoming update to this review.
Besides its draconian screengrab and keystroke monitoring, Hubstaff doesn’t do an excellent job allowing for deeper change supervision. For instance, Hubstaff doesn’t allow advanced monitoring. If you run a trucking company and you’re less concerned about the number of hours a trucker drove than the distance driven, then there is no way to manage this in Hubstaff. Users may add notes to an empty text area, but that data will not be mixed into accounts. As a consequence, that you can not use it to find out about who is working, how they are 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 tracking fields. You can even put in a question for every single clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an episode? Yes. No.”) Along with the system forces the user to reply to the questions at the end of every change or they will not have the ability to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is all about tracking work, the application 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 are using the mobile program to monitor time). This is a standard feature that’s available in almost every other instrument we tested. Hubstaff also does not enable admins to require users to snap a photo if they report to work. I guess it is overkill to generate somebody take a selfie before you start recording their display and monitoring their keystrokes, but TSheets lets you set this as a necessity (which makes sense, particularly if you’re monitoring tasks done out of a computer, such as retail, building, or amusement work). The software also does not let users clock in via a telephone call, which is a component TSheets and other service providers make available for employees who don’t have a smartphone.
Tracking Employee Work
We have touched on how a number of Hubstaff’s more Enormous Brother-like features factor into time monitoring. But the platform also has a lot of the hallmarks of employee tracking tools. Hubstaff’s employee monitoring attributes include keystroke logging, URL and application tracking, GPS and location monitoring, and activity screenshots.
Once you place your customers and they download the timer app onto their machine, the desktop app not only tracks time but will require screenshots randomly or in custom intervals, for example three screenshots per minute. This applies not only to the user’s main screen but any attached monitors too. Hubstaff does not log keys however, it will monitor the action provided via the mouse and computer keyboard, giving companies a calculation of just how active the worker is. This info all winds up around the Hubstaff dashboard from the Activity tab. This is where you can then pick an individual in the drop-down menu to see their screenshots connected with activity data.
When it comes to program and URL monitoring, Hubstaff goes beyond just tracking time to learn what websites and programs a worker visited or opened and how long they were there. The Reports section may then run custom queries on vectors like app usage mapped against time and activity. Hubstaff integrates with job and job management tools like Asana and Trello to filter reports from particular projects or tasks to track productivity.
One unique employee monitoring feature offered is GPS location tracking through Hubstaff’s mobile program. While the mobile app can’t take screenshots or capture mobile app and site activity, it lets you track and log place for employees working in the area. While the depth of tracking data and surveillance features can not step up to a grid application such as Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for employee tracking, Hubstaff includes a helpful selection of features for employers that want a bit more oversight. Productivity Software List
Hubstaff is a easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time monitoring tool. If you’re diligent about tracking employee behavior while on the clockthen there is no better program available than Hubstaff. You’ll have the ability to log screenshots, monitor keystroke volume, and route movements via GPS tracking.
Unfortunately, if you’re looking for a platform which goes the excess mile to enable customization, atypical information entry, or a much more sophisticated reporting arrangement, then Hubstaff won’t be perfect for you. In addition, should you opt for a different program, your employees will thank you for not needing them to download a secondary app for monitoring time–particularly when you consider that every other instrument we reviewed makes this possible within the boundaries of their web-based UI. Productivity Software List