Introduction Software Productivity Research Llc
When picking a time monitoring tool, it’s important to comprehend the various types of tools out there. Tools such as Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all include powerful time monitoring features for professional services companies. On the other hand, the time tracking features in these tools are available only within larger project management (PM) suites. As a result, you’re paying much more money for things such as file storage, in-app chat, progress reports, and change management. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you’ll discover pure play time monitoring tools such as Hubstaff (which begins at $5 a month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice tool for time tracking. Software Productivity Research Llc
Characteristics and Usage
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) was created with an attractive 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’ll be taken to the main dashboard, which gives you an summary of how many hours your employees have worked this day and how many hours they have worked over the previous seven days. You’ll also find a list of every member, their most recent tasks, and how busy they have been over the last week. This is a strong PM data visualization that allows you instantly differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it instantly calls to attention projects that are getting more than sufficient attention and jobs that are being disregarded.
There are two methods to add 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 app. With the timesheet feature, you log in your hours since you probably did with pen and paper through the analog era of time monitoring. Essentially, 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 monitoring time. Regrettably, because Hubstaff does not allow you to add future time, you can not use the platform for a shift planner. Administrators can let users manually edit previously submitted timesheets, and they can force users to need a reason to guarantee they’re actually adding hours that they worked. Admins can also set up the system to remind users to begin tracking time if they haven’t clocked to the machine in a while.
The next, and most frustrating, way of monitoring moment in Hubstaff is using the stopwatch feature. In each solution we tested, this element is available within the confines of your web browser–every alternative that is, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you’re expected to download an native desktop application that resides within another window. In it, you can select your project, press Start, along with your own timer will start counting. When you’re done, your action and your screenshots will be sent to the principal hub. The native app 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 employees. Screenshots can be partly fuzzy to not capture sensitive information on every catch, but a lot of the display is left unsullied that you’ll still get a sense of whether the screen is really on work-related or play-related content. This can be an annoyingly complex and complicated means to manually track time, especially if you’re jumping from task to task through the day. Hubstaff must find a way to bring 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 apps is exactly the same as it is on the desktop app. The mobile programs let admins monitor motions via GPS tracking. This provides you an overview of how much movement was done by your worker by capturing location information at distinct stages.
The Schedules tab enables you to assign dates and times for employees to work. You can put a minimum number of hours to operate, a lunch break duration, and you can make it a recurring change. The tool’s reporting applications is horribly basic: You’ll receive access to weekly, daily, job, and member view reports as well as a”custom” report which lets you filter information from the above reports. In comparison to the PM options within this course, Hubstaff’s reporting is utterly embarrassing so, if your goal is to learn and evolve based on when and how your employees handle time, you would be much 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 made depending on the time each employee worked, as well as his or her related pay rate. You can set up automatic payroll through PayPal, which enables you to automate payments based on time tracked inside the tool. Keep in mind: Users do not need to send time through for acceptance, therefore automatic payments will be made whether employees were right or wrong concerning the number of hours that they worked. There is no reminder for supervisors to double-check every timesheet ahead of automatic payments move out so, if you’re concerned about making bogus payments, then you can place PayPal payments to guide. Software Productivity Research Llc
Price And Alternatives
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 want to pay them as soon as the job is finished. The Fundamental $5-per-month plan gives you access to easy time monitoring tools, a worker payment schedule manager, 24/7 support, and user preferences which may be handled in an employee-by-employee basis. Additionally, this program lets you keep track of whether your employees are operating by allowing you document screenshots while they function as well as monitor mouse and keyboard action during shifts. Of the five tools we’ve analyzed, Hubstaff is the only instrument which offered this amount of insight into the way that workers are progressing. Although screen and keyboard monitoring are helpful (albeit over-reaching) attributes for a change monitor, Hubstaff’s implementation leaves much to be wanted (more on this later).
The 9-per-user-per-month Premium program includes all you’ll discover in the fundamental plan, but you’ll also have access to Hubstaff’s application programming interface (API) to integrate the application with other third-party applications. The Premium bundle also comes with a lightweight schedulingtool that gives administrators the power to assign shifts and delegate tasks from within the console. Premium clients can also use the tool to make invoices and create PayPal payments automatically. Clients that pay yearly will get two months free (for both cost tiers).
In comparison to TSheets, its closest competitor in our roundup, Hubstaff is reasonably priced, particularly given the added monitoring features that are unavailable in competitive resources. TSheets offers a fundamental free accounts, in addition to a $4-per-user-per-month accounts that charges a $16 base fee per month for groups with fewer than 100 users, and a $80 base fee monthly for groups with over 100 users. The base fee, which Hubstaff does not charge, makes TSheets marginally more costly than Hubstaff, even in Hubstaff’s Premium level.
If you’re more interested in those hulky PM solutions, then you will want to pony up a bit 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 users (which is a pretty solid deal if you need all the extra PM attributes ). Wrike’s cheapest time monitoring plan costs $24.80 per user per month.
What Should Be Added
Editor’s note: Since our first overview of Hubstaff, the business has released a major upgrade in late 2018 that specifically addressed specific feature flaws or omissions, including adding a web timer, fleshing out coverage options, and adding action levels and screen tracking. We are going to be testing these features shortly and you will see the results in an upcoming update to this review.
Besides its draconian screengrab and keystroke monitoring, Hubstaff does not do a very good job allowing for deeper change supervision. For instance, Hubstaff doesn’t allow advanced monitoring. If you operate a trucking business and you’re less concerned about how many hours a trucker drove than the distance driven, then there is no way to handle this in Hubstaff. Users may add notes to a empty text field, but that information won’t be blended into reports. This means that you can’t use it to learn about who’s working, how they are functioning, and what they are generating (aside from the number of hours monitored ). TSheets not only provides you this option, it gives you the ability to create six extra customizable advanced tracking fields. You can also add a query for every single clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an incident? Yes. No.”) Along with the system forces the user to reply to the questions at the close of every shift or they will not be able to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is all about tracking work, the application does not allow for IP address restrictions, so your employees can say they’re working from the office but they could actually be operating from a cruise boat in the Bahamas (unless they are using the mobile app to monitor time). This is a standard feature that’s available in almost every other instrument we analyzed. Hubstaff also does not enable admins to require users to snap a photograph when they report to work. I guess it’s overkill to generate somebody take a selfie right before you start recording their display and monitoring their keystrokes, but TSheets enables you to place this as a necessity (which makes sense, especially if you’re monitoring tasks done outside of a computer, such as retail, building, or amusement work). The software also doesn’t allow users clock in via a telephone call, which is a component TSheets along with other service providers make readily available for workers who don’t have a smartphone.
Tracking Employee Work
We’ve touched on how a number of Hubstaff’s more Enormous Brother-like features factor into time monitoring. However, the platform also has a lot of the hallmarks of worker tracking tools. Hubstaff’s employee monitoring features include keystroke logging, URL and program monitoring, GPS and place monitoring, and action screenshots.
As soon as 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 in custom intervals, such as three screenshots each minute. This applies not just to the user’s main screen but any connected monitors as well. Hubstaff doesn’t log keys however, it does track the action provided through the mouse and computer keyboard, providing employers a calculation of how busy the employee is. This data all winds up on the Hubstaff dashboard in the Activity tab. This is where you can then pick an individual in the drop-down menu to view their screenshots connected with activity data.
If it comes to program and URL monitoring, Hubstaff goes beyond just tracking time to see what sites and apps a worker visited or opened and how long they were there. The Reports section can then run custom queries on vectors like program usage mapped against time and activity. Hubstaff integrates with job and task 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 monitoring through Hubstaff’s mobile app. While the cellular app can’t take screenshots or capture mobile app and website activity, it lets you monitor and log location for workers working in the area. While the depth of tracking surveillance and data features can’t step up to a grid application for example Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for employee tracking, Hubstaff has a useful choice of features for employers that want a little more oversight. Software Productivity Research Llc
Hubstaff is a easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time monitoring tool. If you’re diligent about tracking employee behaviour while on the clock, then there’s no better software available than Hubstaff. You’ll have the ability to log screenshots, monitor keystroke volume, and path moves via GPS monitoring.
Unfortunately, if you’re looking for a platform which goes the extra mile to enable customization, irregular data entry, or a much more sophisticated reporting arrangement, then Hubstaff won’t be perfect for you. Additionally, should you choose a different program, your employees will thank you for not requiring them to download a secondary program for monitoring time–particularly once you consider that every other instrument we examined makes this potential within the confines of their web-based UI. Software Productivity Research Llc