Introduction Software Productivity Improvement
When picking a time tracking tool, it’s important to comprehend the various kinds of tools available. Tools like Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all include powerful time monitoring features for professional services companies. However, the time tracking features in these tools are available only within bigger project management (PM) suites. As a result, you are paying much more cash for things like file storage, in-app chat, progress reports, and change management. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you will find pure play time monitoring tools like Hubstaff (which starts at $5 per month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice tool for time tracking. Software Productivity Improvement
Characteristics and Usage
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) was created with a appealing left-rail blue navigation bar which leaves plenty of room on the side of your screen for data entry and analysis. When you log into the system, you will be taken to the main dashboard, which gives you an overview of how many hours your employees have worked that day and how many hours they’ve worked over the past seven days. You’ll also find a list of each member, their latest jobs, and how active they’ve been over the last week. This is a solid PM data visualization which allows you instantly differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it instantly calls to attention projects which are getting more than enough focus and projects that are being neglected.
There are two ways to add time in Hubstaff: You are able to build manual timesheets with past hours worked, or you can use the stopwatch feature on Hubstaff’s native desktop app. Together with the timesheet attribute, 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 time to your timesheet, and you sign off on it. This is a fairly standard method of tracking time. Unfortunately, because Hubstaff does not allow you to add future time, you can’t use the platform for 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 that they worked. Admins may also set the system up to let users to begin tracking time if they haven’t clocked to the machine in a while.
The second, and most frustrating, way of monitoring moment in Hubstaff is by using the stopwatch feature. In each solution we tested, this element is available within the confines of your internet browserevery alternative that is, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you are expected to download an native desktop application that lives within a separate window. In it, you can choose your project, press Start, along with your own timer will start counting. When you are done, your action 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 often the admin wants to spy on workers. Screenshots can be partially blurred not to record sensitive information on each grab, but enough of the display is left unsullied you’ll still get a sense of if the screen is 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 add the stopwatch and also 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’s on the desktop program. The mobile apps let admins monitor movements via GPS monitoring. This provides you an summary of just how much motion was done by your employee by capturing location data at distinct stages.
The Schedules tab lets you assign dates and times for employees to work. You can put a minimum number of hours to work, a lunch break interval, and you can make it a recurring shift. The program’s reporting software is horribly basic: You’ll receive access to weekly, daily, job, 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 coverage is downright embarrassing consequently, if your goal is to understand and evolve based on when and how your employees manage time, you would be much better off working with Zoho Projects, our Editors’ Choice for PM.
Admins receive notifications when they’ve reached weekly staffing and budget limits. Invoices are automatically calculated and created depending on the time each worker worked, in addition to their related pay rate. You can set up automatic citizenship through PayPal, which enables you to automate payments based on time monitored inside the application. Remember: Users don’t need to send time through for acceptance, therefore automatic payments will be made whether workers were right or wrong concerning the number of hours they worked. There’s not any reminder for managers to double-check each timesheet before automatic payments go out so, if you’re concerned about making false payments, then you can set PayPal payments to guide. Software Productivity Improvement
Price And Options
Hubstaff has been built to provide you with Big Brother-level oversight into when workers are working, what they are doing while they operate, and what you really need to pay them as soon as the work is done. The Fundamental $5-per-month program gives you access to simple time tracking tools, an employee payment program supervisor, 24/7 support, and user settings which may be handled in an employee-by-employee basis. Moreover, this plan lets you keep tabs on whether or not your employees are working by letting you record screenshots while they work in addition to monitor mouse and keyboard action during changes. Of the five tools we analyzed, Hubstaff is the only instrument that provided this amount of insight into the way that workers are progressing. Although screen and keyboard monitoring are helpful (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 program includes everything you’ll find in the fundamental program, but you will also have access to Hubstaff’s application programming interface (API) to integrate the tool with other third party applications. The Premium package also comes with a lightweight schedulingtool that provides administrators the capability to assign shifts and assign tasks from inside the console. Premium clients can also use the application to create invoices and create PayPal payments mechanically. Customers that pay yearly will get two months free (for both cost tiers).
Compared to TSheets, its closest competition 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, as well as a $4-per-user-per-month account that charges a $16 base fee a month for teams who have fewer than 100 users, along with a $80 base fee per month for teams with more than a hundred users. The base fee, which Hubstaff doesn’t charge, makes TSheets marginally more expensive than Hubstaff, even at Hubstaff’s Premium degree.
If you are more interested in these hulky PM solutions, then you will need to pony up a little more money. Mavenlink’s cheapest plan 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 fairly good deal if you need all of the extra PM attributes ). Wrike’s lowest 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 update in late 2018 that specifically addressed certain feature weaknesses or omissions, including adding a web timer, fleshing out coverage options, and adding action levels and monitor tracking. We are going to be testing these attributes 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 an excellent job allowing for deeper change supervision. For instance, Hubstaff does not allow advanced monitoring. If you run a trucking business and you’re less concerned about the number of hours each 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 mixed into reports. This means that you can not use it to find out about who is functioning, how they are functioning, and what they’re producing (other than the amount of hours tracked). TSheets not only provides you this option, it provides you the ability to make six additional customizable innovative tracking fields. You might also put in a query for every single clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an episode? Yes. No.”) Along with the system forces the user to reply to the queries at the close of every change or they won’t be able to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is all about tracking work, the application does not allow for IP address limitations, which means your employees 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 monitor time). This is a normal feature that’s available in virtually every other instrument we analyzed. Hubstaff also doesn’t enable admins to require users to snap a photograph if they report to work. I suppose it is overkill to generate somebody 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, construction, or entertainment work). The program also does not let users clock in via a telephone call, which can be 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 some of Hubstaff’s more Enormous Brother-like features factor into time tracking. But the platform also has many of the hallmarks of worker monitoring tools. Hubstaff’s employee tracking attributes include keystroke logging, URL and application tracking, GPS and place monitoring, and activity screenshots.
Once you place your customers and they download the timer app onto their server, the desktop app not only monitors 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 screen but any connected monitors too. Hubstaff does not log keys however, it will track the action provided via the mouse and keyboard, providing employers a calculation of how busy the worker is. This data all winds up around the Hubstaff dashboard from the Task tab. This is where you can then select 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 sites and programs a worker visited or opened and how long they had been there. The Reports module can subsequently run custom questions on vectors such as app usage mapped against time and action. Hubstaff integrates with project and job management tools such as Asana and Trello to filter reports by specific projects or tasks to track productivity.
One unique employee tracking feature supplied is GPS location monitoring through Hubstaff’s mobile program. While the cellular app can not take screenshots or capture mobile app and site activity, it allows you to track and log place for employees working in the field. While the thickness of tracking data and surveillance features can’t measure up to a grid application such as Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for worker tracking, Hubstaff includes a useful selection of attributes for employers that want a bit more oversight. Software Productivity Improvement
Hubstaff is a easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time monitoring tool. If you are diligent about monitoring employee behavior while on the clockthen there is no better software available than Hubstaff. You will 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 extra mile to allow customization, irregular information entry, or a much more advanced reporting structure, then Hubstaff will not be right for you. In addition, should you opt for a different system, your employees will thank you for not needing them to obtain a secondary app for tracking time–particularly once you consider that every other instrument we examined makes this possible within the confines of their web-based UI. Software Productivity Improvement