Intro Software Productivity Packages
When choosing a time monitoring tool, it is important to comprehend the many different types of tools available. Tools like Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all include powerful time tracking features for professional services businesses. On the other hand, the time tracking features in these tools are available only within bigger project management (PM) suites. Because of this, you’re paying much more cash for things like file storage, in-app discussion, progress reports, and change administration. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you’ll find pure play time tracking tools like Hubstaff (which begins at $5 a month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice tool for time tracking. Software Productivity Packages
Attributes and Usage
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) is designed with an attractive left-rail blue navigation bar which leaves plenty of room around the right-hand side of your screen 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 see a list of each member, their most recent jobs, and how active they’ve been over the last week. This is a solid PM data visualization that lets you immediately differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it immediately calls to attention projects which are becoming more than enough attention and projects that are being neglected.
There are two methods to add time in Hubstaff: You can build manual timesheets with previous hours worked, or you can use the stopwatch feature on Hubstaff’s native desktop program. With the timesheet attribute, you log your hours as you likely did with pen and paper through the analog era of time tracking. Essentially, you work your shift, you add the time to your timesheet, and you also sign off on it. This is a fairly standard method of monitoring time. Unfortunately, because Hubstaff doesn’t let you add future time, you can’t use the platform for a shift planner. Administrators can allow users manually edit previously submitted timesheets, and they can induce users to require a reason to guarantee they’re actually adding hours that they worked. Admins may also set up the system 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 monitoring time in Hubstaff is using the stopwatch feature. In every solution we analyzed, this element is available within the confines of your web browser–every solution that is, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you’re required to download an native desktop application that lives within another window. In it, you can select your job, press Start, along with your timer will start counting. When you are done, your activity and your screenshots will be sent to the main hub. The native app will take a photo at random intervals of up to three shots per hour based on how often the admin would like to spy on workers. Screenshots can be partly blurred to not record sensitive information on every catch, but enough of the display is left unsullied that you’ll still get a sense of if the display is really on work-related or play-related content. This is an annoyingly complicated and complicated way to manually track time, especially if you’re jumping from task to task throughout the day. Hubstaff must discover a way to bring the stopwatch and 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 app. The mobile programs let admins monitor movements via GPS monitoring. This provides you an summary of 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 workers to work. You can set a minimum number of hours to operate, a lunch break duration, and you’ll be able to allow it to be a recurring change. The program’s reporting software is terribly basic: You’ll receive access to weekly, daily, project, and member view reports as well as a”habit” report which allows you filter information from the above reports. When compared to the PM solutions in this course, Hubstaff’s coverage is utterly embarrassing so, if your target is to understand and evolve based on when and how your employees manage time, you’d be better off working using Zoho Projects, our Editors’ Choice for PM.
Admins receive notifications once they have reached weekly staffing and funding limitations. Invoices are automatically calculated and made depending on the time each employee 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 tracked within the application. Keep in mind: Users don’t need to send time through for approval, therefore automatic payments will be made whether workers were right or wrong about the amount of hours that they worked. There’s no reminder for managers to double-check every timesheet before automatic payments go out thus, if you are worried about making bogus payments, then it is possible to place PayPal payments to manual. Software Productivity Packages
Price And Options
Hubstaff was constructed to give you Big Brother-level oversight into when employees are working, what they are doing while they operate, and what you want to pay them as soon as the work is done. The Fundamental $5-per-month program provides you access to simple time monitoring tools, a worker payment program manager, 24/7 support, and user preferences which can be handled on an employee-by-employee basis. Moreover, this plan enables you to keep tabs on whether or not your employees are operating by letting you document screenshots while they work as well as monitor mouse and keyboard action during changes. Of the five tools we tested, Hubstaff is the only instrument which provided this amount of insight into how workers are progressing. Although screen and keyboard monitoring are helpful (albeit over-reaching) attributes for a shift screen, Hubstaff’s implementation leaves much to be desired (more on this later).
The $9-per-user-per-month Premium program includes everything you’ll find in the Basic plan, but you will also get access to Hubstaff’s application programming interface (API) to integrate the tool with other third-party applications. The Premium bundle also comes with a lightweight schedulingtool that gives administrators the capability to assign shifts and delegate tasks from within the console. Premium customers can also use the tool to make invoices and create PayPal payments mechanically. Clients that pay annually will get two weeks free (for both price tiers).
Compared to TSheets, its nearest competition in our roundup, Hubstaff is reasonably priced, particularly given the extra tracking features that are unavailable in competitive tools. TSheets offers a fundamental free accounts, as well as a $4-per-user-per-month account that charges a $16 base fee per month for teams with fewer than 100 users, and an $80 base fee monthly for teams with over 100 users. The base fee, which Hubstaff does not charge, makes TSheets slightly more expensive than Hubstaff, even at Hubstaff’s Premium level.
If you are more interested in these hulky PM solutions, then you’ll need to pony up a little more cash. Mavenlink’s cheapest plan that includes time monitoring prices $39 per user per month. Zoho’s cheapest time monitoring plan is $25 per month for an unlimited number of consumers (which is a fairly good deal if you need all the excess PM features). Wrike’s cheapest time monitoring plan prices $24.80 per user per month.
What Ought to Be Added
Editor’s note: Since our original overview of Hubstaff, the business has released a significant upgrade in late 2018 that specifically addressed specific feature weaknesses or omissions, including adding a web timer, fleshing out coverage options, and adding activity levels and screen monitoring. We are going to be analyzing 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 oversight. By way of instance, Hubstaff doesn’t allow advanced tracking. If you operate a trucking company and you’re less concerned about how many hours each trucker drove than the distance driven, then there is no way to handle that in Hubstaff. Users can add notes to an empty text area, but that information won’t be blended into reports. This means that you can not use it to find out about who’s functioning, how they’re functioning, and what they’re generating (aside from the number of hours tracked). TSheets not only provides you this option, it gives you the ability to make six additional customizable innovative tracking fields. You can also put in a question for every single clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an episode? Yes. No.”) Along with the system forces the consumer to reply to the queries at the close of every shift or they won’t be able to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is all about monitoring work, the application doesn’t permit for IP address restrictions, which means your workers can say they are working from the office but they can actually be working 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 does not 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 start recording their display and monitoring their keystrokes, but TSheets enables you to place this as a requirement (which makes sense, particularly if you’re monitoring tasks done outside of a computer, like retail, building, or entertainment work). The program also does not allow users clock via a telephone call, which is a component TSheets along with other service providers make available for workers who do not have a smartphone.
Monitoring Employee Work
We’ve touched on how some of Hubstaff’s more Enormous Brother-like attributes factor into time monitoring. However, the platform also offers a lot of the hallmarks of worker monitoring tools. Hubstaff’s employee tracking features include keystroke logging, URL and program monitoring, GPS and place tracking, and action screenshots.
As soon as you set your users and they download the timer app onto their machine, the desktop app not only tracks time but will take screenshots randomly or at custom intervals, for example three screenshots per minute. This applies not only to the user’s main screen but any attached monitors as well. Hubstaff doesn’t log keys but it does monitor the activity provided through the mouse and keyboard, providing companies a calculation of how busy the employee is. This info all winds up on the Hubstaff dashboard in the Activity tab. This is where you can then select an individual in the drop-down menu to see their screenshots connected with activity data.
When it comes to program and URL tracking, Hubstaff goes beyond simply tracking time to see what sites and apps a worker opened or visited and how long they were there. The Reports section may then run custom queries on vectors such as app usage mapped against time and action. Hubstaff incorporates with project and task management tools like Asana and Trello to filter reports from specific projects or tasks to monitor productivity.
1 unique employee tracking feature offered is GPS location tracking through Hubstaff’s mobile app. While the cellular app can’t take screenshots or catch mobile app and site activity, it allows you to track and log place for workers working in the area. While the thickness of monitoring surveillance and data features can’t step up to a grid application for example Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for employee monitoring, Hubstaff has a useful selection of attributes for companies that want a little more oversight. Software Productivity Packages
Hubstaff is a easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time monitoring tool. If you are diligent about tracking employee behaviour while on the clockthen there’s no better program accessible than Hubstaff. You will be able to log screenshots, track keystroke volume, and route moves via GPS tracking.
Unfortunately, if you’re trying to find a platform which goes the extra mile to allow customization, irregular data entry, or a much more advanced reporting structure, then Hubstaff will not be right for you. Additionally, in case you opt for a different 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 possible within the confines of their online UI. Software Productivity Packages