Background Productivity Software Suites Are Available As Web-Based Software
When picking a time monitoring tool, it is important to understand the many different types of tools available. Tools like Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all include robust time monitoring features for professional services businesses. However, the time monitoring features in these tools are available only within bigger project management (PM) suites. Because of this, you are paying much more money 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 like Hubstaff (which begins at $5 per month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice tool for time tracking. Productivity Software Suites Are Available As Web-Based Software
Attributes and Usage
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) was created with a appealing left-rail blue navigation bar which leaves lots of room around the side of your display for data entry and analysis. When you 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 this day and how many hours they have worked over the past seven days. You will also see a list of each member, their most recent tasks, and how busy they’ve been over the last week. This is a solid PM data visualization that lets you instantly differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it instantly calls to focus projects that are getting more than enough focus and jobs that are being neglected.
There are two ways to add time in Hubstaff: You can build manual timesheets with past hours worked, or you may use the stopwatch feature on Hubstaff’s native desktop app. Together with the timesheet feature, you log your hours since you likely did with pencil and paper through the analog era of time monitoring. Basically, if you work your shift, you add the time to your timesheet, and you also sign off on it. This is a fairly standard procedure of monitoring time. Unfortunately, because Hubstaff doesn’t allow you to add future time, you can not use the platform as a shift planner. Administrators can allow users manually edit formerly submitted timesheets, and they can induce users to require a motive to guarantee they’re actually adding hours they worked. Admins can also set the system up to remind users to begin monitoring time should they have not clocked into the machine in a little while.
The second, and most bothersome, way of tracking time in Hubstaff is by using the stopwatch feature. In every solution we tested, this element is available within the confines of your internet browserevery solution that is, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you’re required to download an native desktop application that lives within a separate window. In it, you can select your project, press Start, along with your own timer will begin counting. When you’re done, your action and your screenshots will be transmitted to the main hub. The native program is going to take a photo at random periods of up to 3 shots per hour based on how often the admin would like to spy on employees. Screenshots can be partially blurred to not capture sensitive information on each grab, but a lot of this display is left unsullied you’ll still get a feeling of if the screen is really on work-related or play-related content. This is an annoyingly complicated and convoluted means to manually monitor time, especially if you’re jumping from task to task through the day. Hubstaff must discover a way to add the stopwatch and also 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 programs let admins monitor movements via GPS tracking. This provides you an summary of just how much movement was performed by your worker by capturing location data at distinct stages.
The Schedules tab enables you to assign dates and times for employees to work. You can set a minimum number of hours to operate, a lunch break duration, and you’ll be able to make it a recurring shift. The tool’s reporting software is terribly basic: You will receive access to weekly, daily, project, and penis view reports in addition to a”custom” report which allows you filter information from the above reports. In comparison to the PM solutions within this course, Hubstaff’s reporting is downright embarrassing so, if your goal is to learn and evolve based on when and how your employees manage time, you would be 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 made based on the time each worker 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 within the application. Remember: Users don’t have to send time through for approval, so automatic payments will be made whether employees were right or wrong about the amount of hours they worked. There’s no reminder for managers to double-check each timesheet before automatic payments go out so, if you’re concerned about making false payments, then it is possible to set PayPal payments to guide. Productivity Software Suites Are Available As Web-Based Software
Cost And Options
Hubstaff has been built to provide you with Big Brother-level oversight into when employees are working, what they’re doing while they work, and what you really need to cover them when the job is finished. The Basic $5-per-month plan gives you access to easy time monitoring tools, an employee payment program manager, 24/7 support, and user preferences which can be managed in an employee-by-employee basis. Moreover, this plan lets you keep track of whether or not your employees are working by allowing you record screenshots while they function as well as monitor mouse and keyboard activity during changes. Of the five tools we’ve tested, Hubstaff is the only tool which provided this amount of insight into the way that workers are progressing. Although screen and keyboard monitoring are useful (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 plan includes everything you’ll find in the Basic plan, but you will also have 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 power to assign shifts and assign tasks from within the console. Premium clients can also use the tool to make invoices and create PayPal payments mechanically. Customers that pay annually will receive two weeks free (for both cost tiers).
In comparison to TSheets, its nearest competitor in our roundup, Hubstaff is fairly priced, particularly given the extra monitoring features that are unavailable in competitive tools. TSheets offers a basic free accounts, in addition to a $4-per-user-per-month accounts that charges a $16 base fee a month for groups who have fewer than 100 users, and a $80 foundation fee per month for teams with more than 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 those hulky PM alternatives, then you’ll need to pony up a bit more money. Mavenlink’s cheapest plan that includes time monitoring prices $39 per user per month. Zoho’s cheapest time monitoring plan is $25 a month for an infinite number of users (that is a pretty solid deal if you want all the extra PM attributes ). Wrike’s lowest time monitoring plan costs $24.80 per user per month.
What Ought to Be Added
Editor’s note: Since our original review of Hubstaff, the business has released a major 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 are going to be testing these features shortly and you’ll 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 shift supervision. By way of instance, Hubstaff does not allow advanced tracking. If you run a trucking business and you are less concerned about how many hours each trucker drove than the distance driven, then there’s no way to manage this in Hubstaff. Users can add notes to a empty text field, but that information will not be mixed into accounts. This means you can not use it to find out about who is functioning, how they are functioning, and what they are generating (other than the number of hours monitored ). TSheets not only gives you this option, it gives you the ability to create six extra customizable advanced monitoring fields. You can even add a query for every clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an episode? Yes. No.”) Along with the system forces the user to respond to the queries at the close of every shift or else they won’t be able to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is about tracking work, the tool doesn’t permit for IP address limitations, which means your workers can say they’re working from the workplace but they can actually be operating from a cruise boat in the Bahamas (unless they’re using the cell app to monitor time). This is a normal feature that’s available in almost every other tool we analyzed. Hubstaff also doesn’t enable admins to need users to snap a photograph if they report to work. I suppose it is overkill to make someone take a selfie before you get started recording their display and tracking their keystrokes, but TSheets enables you to set this as a requirement (which makes sense, especially if you’re tracking tasks done out of a computer, such as electronic, building, or entertainment work). The program also doesn’t let users clock in via a telephone call, which is an element TSheets and other service providers make available for employees who do not have a smartphone.
Tracking Employee Work
We have touched on how a number of Hubstaff’s more Big Brother-like features factor into time tracking. But the platform also offers a lot of the hallmarks of employee monitoring tools. Hubstaff’s employee tracking attributes include keystroke logging, URL and application monitoring, GPS and place monitoring, and action screenshots.
Once you place 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, such as three screenshots per minute. This applies not just to the user’s most important display but any connected monitors as well. Hubstaff does not log keys but it does track the activity provided through the mouse and keyboard, providing employers a calculation of how active 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 activity data.
When it comes to application and URL tracking, Hubstaff goes beyond just tracking time to see what sites and programs an employee opened or visited and how long they had been there. The Reports section can subsequently run custom queries on vectors like program usage mapped against time and action. Hubstaff integrates with project and job management tools like Asana and Trello to filter reports from specific tasks or projects to monitor productivity.
One unique employee tracking feature offered is GPS location tracking through Hubstaff’s mobile app. While the mobile app can’t take screenshots or catch mobile app and site activity, it allows you to monitor and log place for workers working in the area. While the depth of monitoring data and surveillance features can’t step up to a powerhouse tool for example Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for worker monitoring, Hubstaff has a helpful selection of features for employers that want a little more oversight. Productivity Software Suites Are Available As Web-Based Software
Hubstaff is an easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time tracking tool. If you’re diligent about tracking employee behaviour while on the clock, then there is no better program available than Hubstaff. You’ll be able to log screenshots, track keystroke volume, and route moves via GPS tracking.
Regrettably, if you’re trying to find a platform that goes the excess mile to allow customization, atypical data entry, or even a much more sophisticated reporting structure, then Hubstaff won’t be right for you. In addition, should you opt for another program, your employees will thank you for not requiring them to download a secondary program for tracking time–especially when you consider that every other instrument we examined makes this possible within the confines of their online UI. Productivity Software Suites Are Available As Web-Based Software