Introduction Rescue Time
When picking a time tracking tool, it is important to comprehend the many different types of tools available. Tools like Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all feature robust time monitoring features for professional services businesses. On the other hand, the time monitoring features in such tools are available only as part of bigger project management (PM) suites. As a result, you’re paying much more money for things such as 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 such as Hubstaff (which starts at $5 per month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice instrument for time tracking. Rescue Time
Characteristics and Usage
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) is designed with an attractive left-rail blue navigation bar which leaves plenty of room around the side of your screen for data entry and analysis. When you log into the system, you’ll be taken to the main dashboard, which provides you an overview of how many hours your employees have worked that day and how many hours they have worked over the past seven days. You’ll also find a list of each member, their most recent tasks, and how busy they’ve been over the past week. This is a solid PM data visualization which allows you immediately differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it instantly calls to focus projects that are getting more than enough attention and projects that are being disregarded.
There are two ways to put in time in Hubstaff: You can build manual timesheets with past hours worked, or you may use the stopwatch feature on Hubstaff’s native desktop program. With the timesheet attribute, you log your hours as you probably did with pencil and paper during the analog era of time monitoring. Essentially, you work your shift, you add the time to your timesheet, and you also sign off on it. This is a pretty standard method of monitoring time. Unfortunately, because Hubstaff does not allow you to add future time, you can’t use the platform for a shift organizer. Administrators can let users manually edit formerly submitted timesheets, and they can induce users to need a motive to ensure they’re really adding hours they worked. Admins can also set up the system to let users to begin monitoring time should they have not clocked to the machine in a little while.
The second, and most bothersome, way of tracking time in Hubstaff is by using the stopwatch feature. In each solution we analyzed, this element can be found within the boundaries of your internet browserevery solution that is, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you’re expected to download a 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 activity and your screenshots will be transmitted to the principal hub. The native program is going to take a photo at random intervals of up to three shots per hour based on how frequently the admin wants to spy on workers. Screenshots can be partly fuzzy to not capture sensitive information on each grab, but a lot of the screen is left unsullied you’ll still get a sense of whether the screen is really on work-related or play-related content. This is an annoyingly complicated and complicated means to manually track time, particularly if you’re jumping from task to task through the day. Hubstaff must discover a way to add 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 performed by your employee by capturing location information at distinct stages.
The Schedules tab enables you to assign dates and times for employees to do the job. It is possible to put a minimum number of hours to operate, a lunch break interval, and you can make it a recurring change. The program’s reporting applications is terribly basic: You’ll get access to weekly, daily, project, and member view reports in addition to a”custom” report which lets you filter information from the aforementioned reports. When compared to the PM solutions within this class, Hubstaff’s reporting is utterly embarrassing so, if your target is to learn and evolve based on if and how your employees handle time, you’d be better off working using Zoho Projects, our Editors’ Choice for PM.
Admins receive notifications once they have attained weekly staffing and budget limits. Invoices are automatically calculated and created based on the time each worker worked, as well as 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 inside the tool. Keep in mind: Users don’t have to send time for approval, so automatic payments will be made whether workers were right or wrong concerning the amount of hours they worked. There’s not any reminder for supervisors to double-check every 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. Rescue Time
Price And Options
Hubstaff has been constructed to provide you with Big Brother-level oversight into when workers are working, what they’re doing while they operate, and what you really need to pay them as soon as the job is done. The Fundamental $5-per-month program gives you access to easy time monitoring tools, an employee payment program supervisor, 24/7 support, and user settings that can be handled in an employee-by-employee basis. Moreover, this program enables you to keep tabs on whether your employees are working by allowing you document screenshots while they function in addition to monitor mouse and keyboard action during shifts. Of the five tools we tested, Hubstaff is the only instrument that offered this level of insight into the way that workers are progressing. Although screen and keyboard tracking are useful (albeit over-reaching) attributes for a shift monitor, 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 plan, but you’ll also get access to Hubstaff’s application programming interface (API) to integrate the application with other third-party software. The Premium bundle also comes with a lightweight schedulingtool that provides administrators the capability to assign changes and delegate tasks from inside the console. Premium clients can also use the application to create invoices and make PayPal payments mechanically. Customers that pay annually will get two months free (for both cost 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 resources. TSheets supplies a basic free accounts, as well as a $4-per-user-per-month accounts that charges a $16 base fee a month for teams with fewer than 100 users, and an $80 foundation fee monthly for teams with more than 100 users. The base fee, which Hubstaff does not charge, makes TSheets marginally more costly than Hubstaff, even in Hubstaff’s Premium degree.
If you are more interested in these hulky PM alternatives, then you will want to pony up a bit more cash. Mavenlink’s cheapest plan that includes time tracking costs $39 per user per month. Zoho’s cheapest time monitoring plan is $25 a month for an unlimited number of users (which is a fairly solid deal if you want all the extra PM attributes ). Wrike’s cheapest time monitoring plan prices $24.80 per user per month.
What Ought to Be Added
Editor’s note: Since our first review of Hubstaff, the business has released a significant upgrade in late 2018 that specifically addressed specific feature flaws or omissions, including adding a web timer, fleshing out reporting options, and adding action levels and screen monitoring. We are going to be testing these features shortly and you will see the results in an upcoming update to this review.
Aside from its draconian screengrab and keystroke tracking, Hubstaff does not do an excellent job allowing for deeper change oversight. For example, Hubstaff doesn’t allow advanced monitoring. If you operate a trucking business and you’re less concerned about how many hours each trucker drove than the distance driven, then there’s no way to manage this in Hubstaff. Users may add notes to an empty text area, but that information will not be blended into reports. This means that you can not use it to find out about who’s functioning, how they’re working, and what they’re producing (other than the number of hours monitored ). TSheets not only provides you this choice, it provides you the ability to make six additional customizable advanced monitoring fields. You might also add a question for every clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an incident? Yes. No.”) Along with the system forces the user to reply to the questions at the end of every change or else they won’t be able to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is about tracking work, the tool doesn’t allow for IP address limitations, which means your workers can say they are working from the workplace but they can actually be operating from a cruise boat in the Bahamas (unless they’re using the mobile program to track time). This is a normal feature that’s available in almost every other instrument we tested. Hubstaff also does not enable admins to need users to snap a photo if they report to work. I guess it is overkill to generate someone take a selfie before you start recording their screen and monitoring their keystrokes, but TSheets lets you place this as a requirement (which makes sense, especially if you’re monitoring tasks done out of a computer, like electronic, construction, or amusement work). The software also doesn’t allow users clock in via a telephone call, which can be an element TSheets along with other service providers make readily available for employees who do not have a smartphone.
Monitoring Employee Work
We have touched on how a number of Hubstaff’s more Enormous Brother-like attributes factor into time monitoring. However, the platform also has a lot of the hallmarks of employee monitoring tools. Hubstaff’s employee tracking attributes include keystroke logging, URL and application tracking, GPS and place tracking, and action screenshots.
Once you place your customers and they download the timer app onto their machine, the desktop program not only monitors time but will require screenshots randomly or in custom intervals, such as three screenshots per minute. This applies not just to the user’s most important display but any attached monitors too. Hubstaff does not log keys but it will monitor the activity provided through the mouse and keyboard, providing employers a calculation of just how active the worker is. This data 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 correlated with action data.
When it comes to program and URL monitoring, Hubstaff goes beyond simply tracking time to see what websites and apps a worker visited or opened and how long they had been there. The Reports section can subsequently run custom questions on vectors like program usage mapped against time and action. Hubstaff incorporates with project and job management tools such as Asana and Trello to filter reports by particular tasks or projects to track productivity.
1 unique employee tracking feature supplied is GPS location tracking through Hubstaff’s mobile program. While the mobile app can not take screenshots or catch mobile app and website activity, it allows you to monitor and log location for workers working in the area. While the depth of tracking surveillance and data features can not measure up to a grid application such as Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for worker tracking, Hubstaff includes a helpful selection of attributes for employers that want a bit more oversight. Rescue Time
Hubstaff is a easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time monitoring tool. If you’re diligent about tracking employee behavior while on the clock, then there’s no better software available than Hubstaff. You will have the ability to log screenshots, monitor keystroke volume, and route movements via GPS tracking.
Regrettably, if you’re looking for a platform which goes the extra mile to allow customization, atypical information entry, or even a more advanced reporting structure, then Hubstaff will not be perfect for you. In addition, should you choose another system, your employees will thank you for not needing them to download a secondary app for tracking time–particularly once you consider that every other tool we examined makes this potential within the confines of their web-based UI. Rescue Time