Introduction Productivity Suite Definition
When picking a time monitoring tool, it is important to comprehend the various types of tools available. Tools such as Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all include powerful time tracking features for professional services companies. However, the time monitoring features in such tools are available only within bigger project management (PM) suites. As a result, you’re paying a lot more cash for things such as file storage, in-app discussion, progress reports, and change administration. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you will discover pure play time tracking tools like Hubstaff (which begins at $5 per month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice instrument for time tracking. Productivity Suite Definition
Characteristics and Utilization
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) was created with a appealing 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 will be taken to the main dashboard, which gives you an summary of the number of hours your employees have worked this day and the number of hours they’ve worked over the previous seven days. You’ll also find a list of every member, their most recent tasks, and how busy they’ve been over the last week. This is a solid PM data visualization which allows you immediately differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it immediately calls to focus projects which are getting more than enough focus and jobs that are being disregarded.
There are two methods to put in time in Hubstaff: You are able to construct manual timesheets with past hours worked, or you can use the stopwatch feature on Hubstaff’s native desktop program. Together with the timesheet feature, you log in your hours as you likely did with pen and paper during the analog era of time tracking. Basically, if you work your change, you add the time to your 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’t use the platform for a shift organizer. 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 up the system to remind users to begin monitoring time should they haven’t clocked into the system in a while.
The second, and most bothersome, way of monitoring moment in Hubstaff is using the stopwatch feature. In every solution we analyzed, this element is available within the boundaries of your internet browserevery solution 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 choose your job, press Start, along with your own timer will start counting. When you are done, your activity and your screenshots will be transmitted to the main hub. The native app is going to take a photo at random periods of up to 3 shots per hour depending on how often the admin would like to spy on employees. Screenshots can be partly fuzzy to not capture sensitive information on every catch, but enough of the display is left unsullied you’ll still get a sense of if the display is really on work-related or play-related content. This can be 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 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 exactly the same as it is on the desktop program. The mobile apps let admins monitor movements via GPS tracking. This gives you an summary of how much movement was done by your employee by capturing location data at different stages.
The Schedules tab enables you to assign times and dates for workers to work. You can put a minimum number of hours to work, a lunch break duration, and you’ll be able to allow it to be a recurring change. The tool’s reporting software is terribly basic: You’ll receive access to weekly, daily, job, and member view reports as well as a”habit” report which lets you filter information from the aforementioned reports. In comparison to the PM solutions within this course, Hubstaff’s coverage is utterly embarrassing consequently, if your goal is to understand and evolve based on when and how your employees handle time, you would be better off working using Zoho Projects, our Editors’ Choice for PM.
Admins receive notifications once they have reached weekly staffing and budget limitations. Invoices are automatically calculated and made based on the time each worker worked, in addition to his or her related pay rate. It is possible to set up automatic citizenship through PayPal, which lets you automate payments based on time monitored within the tool. Remember: Consumers don’t have to send time for acceptance, therefore automatic payments will be made whether workers were wrong or right about the amount of hours that 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 bogus payments, then it is possible to place PayPal payments to guide. Productivity Suite Definition
Cost And Alternatives
Hubstaff was constructed to provide you with Big Brother-level oversight into when workers are working, what they’re doing while they work, and what you need to pay them when the job is done. The Fundamental $5-per-month plan gives you access to simple time tracking tools, a worker payment program manager, 24/7 support, and user settings which can be managed on an employee-by-employee basis. Moreover, this program lets you keep tabs on whether your employees are working by allowing you document screenshots while they work in addition to monitor keyboard and mouse action during shifts. Of the five tools we’ve analyzed, Hubstaff is the only tool that provided this level of insight into the way that employees are progressing. Although keyboard and screen monitoring are useful (albeit over-reaching) attributes for a change screen, Hubstaff’s implementation leaves much to be desired (more about this later).
The 9-per-user-per-month Premium plan includes everything you’ll find in the Basic program, but you’ll also get access to Hubstaff’s application programming interface (API) to integrate the tool with other third party software. The Premium bundle also has a lightweight schedulingtool that gives administrators the power to assign changes and delegate tasks from inside the console. Premium customers may also use the application to make invoices and make PayPal payments mechanically. Clients that pay annually will get two weeks free (for both price tiers).
In comparison to TSheets, its nearest competitor in our roundup, Hubstaff is fairly priced, especially given the added tracking features that are unavailable in competitive tools. TSheets offers a fundamental free account, as well as a $4-per-user-per-month account that charges a $16 base fee a month for teams with fewer than 100 users, and an $80 base fee per month for groups with more than 100 users. The base fee, which Hubstaff does not charge, makes TSheets marginally more expensive than Hubstaff, even in Hubstaff’s Premium level.
If you are more interested in these hulky PM solutions, then you’ll need to pony up a bit more money. Mavenlink’s cheapest plan that includes time tracking prices $39 per user per month. Zoho’s cheapest time monitoring plan is $25 per month for an infinite number of users (which is a fairly good deal if you need all of the extra PM features). 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 company has released a significant upgrade in late 2018 that specifically addressed certain feature weaknesses or omissions, such as adding a web timer, fleshing out reporting choices, and adding action levels and screen tracking. We are going to be testing these attributes shortly and you will see the results in an upcoming update to this review.
Besides its draconian screengrab and keystroke tracking, Hubstaff does not 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 are less concerned about the number of hours a trucker drove than the distance driven, then there is no way to handle that in Hubstaff. Users may add notes to a empty text field, but that data won’t be mixed into accounts. This means that you can’t use it to find out about who’s functioning, how they’re working, and what they’re generating (aside from the amount of hours monitored ). TSheets not only gives you this choice, it gives you the ability to create six additional customizable advanced monitoring fields. You can even put in a query for every 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 else they won’t have the ability to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is about monitoring work, the application doesn’t allow for IP address limitations, 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’re using the cell app to monitor time). This is a standard feature that’s available in almost every other tool we analyzed. Hubstaff also doesn’t enable admins to require users to snap a photo when they report to work. I guess it is overkill to generate someone take a selfie before you get started recording their display and tracking their keystrokes, but TSheets lets you set this as a requirement (which makes sense, particularly if you’re monitoring tasks done outside of a computer, like retail, building, or amusement work). The program also doesn’t allow users clock via a phone call, which is an element TSheets and other service providers make readily available for workers who do not have a smartphone.
Monitoring Employee Work
We’ve touched on how a number of Hubstaff’s more Big Brother-like attributes factor into time tracking. But the platform also has many of the hallmarks of employee monitoring tools. Hubstaff’s employee monitoring attributes include keystroke logging, URL and program tracking, GPS and location tracking, and activity screenshots.
As soon as you set your customers and they download the timer app onto their server, the desktop program not only tracks time but will require screenshots randomly or in custom intervals, for example three screenshots each minute. This applies not just to the user’s most important display but any attached monitors too. Hubstaff doesn’t log keys but it does monitor the activity provided through the mouse and keyboard, providing companies 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 in the drop-down menu to view their screenshots connected with activity data.
When it comes to application and URL monitoring, Hubstaff goes beyond simply tracking time to learn what websites and apps a worker opened or visited and how long they were there. The Reports module may subsequently run custom queries on vectors like app usage mapped against time and action. Hubstaff integrates with job and task management tools such as Asana and Trello to filter reports by specific tasks or projects to monitor productivity.
1 unique employee monitoring feature offered is GPS location monitoring through Hubstaff’s mobile program. While the cellular app can not take screenshots or capture mobile app and website activity, it allows you to monitor and log place for employees working in the field. While the thickness of monitoring surveillance and data features can’t measure up to a powerhouse tool such as Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for employee tracking, Hubstaff has a helpful choice of attributes for employers that want a bit more oversight. Productivity Suite Definition
Hubstaff is an easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time monitoring tool. If you’re diligent about monitoring employee behavior while on the clockthen there is no better program accessible than Hubstaff. You’ll have the ability to log screenshots, monitor keystroke volume, and path moves via GPS tracking.
Regrettably, if you’re looking for a platform that goes the excess mile to enable customization, irregular information entry, or even a more advanced reporting structure, then Hubstaff will not be right for you. In addition, should you opt for another system, your employees will thank you for not requiring them to download a secondary app for tracking time–especially when you consider that every other instrument we examined makes this potential within the confines of their online UI. Productivity Suite Definition