Intro Software Productivity Sloc/Hr
When choosing a time tracking tool, it is important to understand the various types of tools available. Tools like Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all feature robust time tracking features for professional services businesses. However, the time tracking features in such tools are available only within bigger project management (PM) suites. As a result, you are paying a lot more money for things such as file storage, in-app chat, progress reports, and shift management. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you’ll discover pure play time monitoring tools like Hubstaff (which starts at $5 a month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice tool for time tracking. Software Productivity Sloc/Hr
Attributes and Utilization
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 first log into the system, you’ll be taken to the main dashboard, which gives you an overview of how many hours your employees have worked that day and the number of hours they’ve worked over the past seven days. You’ll also find a list of each member, their most recent jobs, and how busy they’ve been over the past week. This is a strong PM data visualization which allows you immediately differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it immediately calls to attention projects that are becoming more than sufficient attention and jobs that are being disregarded.
There are two ways to put in time in Hubstaff: You are able to build manual timesheets with past hours worked, or you may use the stopwatch feature on Hubstaff’s native desktop app. Together with the timesheet feature, you log your hours since you probably did with pen and paper through the analog era of time monitoring. Basically, if you work your shift, you add time to your own timesheet, and you also sign off on it. This is a pretty standard procedure of tracking time. Regrettably, because Hubstaff does not allow you to add future time, you can not use the platform as a shift planner. Administrators can let users manually edit formerly submitted timesheets, and they can induce users to require a reason to ensure they’re really adding hours they worked. Admins can also set up the system to let users to begin tracking time if they haven’t clocked to the machine in a little while.
The next, and most bothersome, way of tracking time in Hubstaff is using the stopwatch feature. In every solution we analyzed, this component can be found within the boundaries of your internet browserevery alternative that is, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you’re required to download a native desktop application that lives within a separate window. In it, you can choose your job, press Start, along with your timer will start counting. When you are done, your activity and your screenshots will be transmitted to the principal hub. The native program is going to take a picture at random periods of up to three shots per hour based on how frequently the admin would like to spy on workers. Screenshots can be partly blurred not to capture sensitive information on each catch, but a lot of this screen is left unsullied you’ll still get a feeling of if the screen is really on work-related or play-related content. This is an annoyingly complex and convoluted way to manually track time, particularly if you’re jumping from task to task through the day. Hubstaff must find a way to add 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 apps is precisely the same as it’s on the desktop app. The mobile programs let admins monitor movements via GPS monitoring. This provides you an overview 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. It is possible to put a minimum number of hours to operate, a lunch break duration, and you’ll be able to allow it to be a recurring shift. The program’s reporting applications is horribly basic: You will receive access to weekly, daily, project, and member view reports as well as a”habit” report which lets you filter information from the aforementioned reports. In comparison to the PM options in this course, Hubstaff’s reporting is utterly embarrassing consequently, if your target is to understand and evolve according to 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 once they have attained weekly staffing and budget limitations. Invoices are automatically calculated and made depending on the time each employee worked, as well as 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 do not have to send time through for acceptance, therefore automatic payments will be made whether workers were right or wrong about the number of hours that they worked. There’s no reminder for supervisors to double-check every timesheet before automatic payments move out thus, if you are concerned about making bogus payments, then it is possible to place PayPal payments to guide. Software Productivity Sloc/Hr
Cost And Alternatives
Hubstaff was 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 when the job is done. The Basic $5-per-month program gives you access to simple time monitoring tools, a worker payment schedule supervisor, 24/7 support, and user settings which can be handled on 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 function in addition to monitor keyboard and mouse action during changes. Of the five tools we analyzed, Hubstaff is the only tool that provided this level of insight into the way that workers are progressing. Although keyboard and screen tracking are useful (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 plan includes everything you’ll find in the fundamental plan, but you will 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 capability to assign shifts and delegate tasks from within the console. Premium clients may also use the application to create invoices and create PayPal payments mechanically. Clients that pay annually will receive two weeks free (for both cost tiers).
In comparison to TSheets, its nearest competition in our roundup, Hubstaff is fairly priced, particularly given the added tracking features that are unavailable in competitive tools. TSheets offers a fundamental free accounts, in addition to a $4-per-user-per-month accounts that costs a $16 base fee per month for groups with fewer than 100 users, along with a $80 foundation fee monthly for teams with more than 100 users. The base fee, which Hubstaff doesn’t charge, makes TSheets slightly more expensive than Hubstaff, even in Hubstaff’s Premium level.
If you are more interested in these hulky PM alternatives, then you will need to pony up a bit more cash. Mavenlink’s cheapest plan that includes time monitoring prices $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 good deal if you want all of the extra PM features). Wrike’s cheapest time monitoring plan costs $24.80 per user per month.
What Should Be Added
Editor’s note: Since our original review of Hubstaff, the company has released a major upgrade in late 2018 that specifically addressed specific feature weaknesses or omissions, including adding a web timer, fleshing out coverage choices, and adding action levels and monitor monitoring. We’ll 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 monitoring, Hubstaff does not do a very good job allowing for deeper change supervision. By way of example, Hubstaff does not allow advanced monitoring. If you run a trucking company and you’re less concerned about how many hours a trucker drove than the distance driven, then there is no way to manage that in Hubstaff. Users may add notes to an empty text field, but that information will not be mixed into accounts. This means you can not use it to find out about who is working, how they are working, and what they are producing (other than the amount of hours tracked). TSheets not only provides you this choice, it gives you the ability to create six additional customizable innovative tracking fields. You can also add a question for every clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an incident? Yes. No.”) Along with the system forces the consumer to respond to the questions at the close of each shift or they won’t have the ability to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is about monitoring work, the tool does not allow for IP address restrictions, so your employees can say they are working from the workplace but they can actually be working from a cruise ship in the Bahamas (unless they are using the cell program to monitor time). This is a normal feature that’s available in almost every other tool we tested. Hubstaff also doesn’t enable admins to require users to snap a photograph when they report to work. I suppose it is overkill to make somebody take a selfie before you start recording their screen and monitoring 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 retail, building, or entertainment work). The program also doesn’t let users clock via a telephone call, which can be a component TSheets and other service providers make available for workers who don’t have a smartphone.
Monitoring Employee Work
We have touched on how some of Hubstaff’s more Enormous Brother-like features factor into time tracking. 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 tracking, GPS and location monitoring, and action screenshots.
As soon as you place your users and they download the timer app onto their server, the desktop program not only tracks time but will require screenshots randomly or at custom intervals, such as three screenshots per minute. This applies not just to the user’s most important display but any connected monitors as well. Hubstaff does not log keys however, it will track the action provided via the mouse and keyboard, providing companies a calculation of how active the worker is. This data all winds up around the Hubstaff dashboard in the Activity tab. This is where you can then pick an individual in the drop-down menu to see their screenshots connected with action data.
If it comes to application and URL monitoring, Hubstaff goes beyond just tracking time to see what sites and programs an employee opened or visited and how long they had been there. The Reports section can subsequently run custom queries on vectors like program usage mapped against time and action. Hubstaff integrates with job and task management tools like Asana and Trello to filter reports from particular projects or tasks to track productivity.
1 unique employee monitoring feature supplied is GPS location tracking through Hubstaff’s mobile app. While the mobile app can’t take screenshots or capture mobile app and site activity, it allows you to track and log place for workers working in the area. While the thickness of monitoring data and surveillance features can’t step up to a grid application such as Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for employee tracking, Hubstaff includes a helpful selection of attributes for employers that want a little more oversight. Software Productivity Sloc/Hr
Hubstaff is a easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time monitoring tool. If you are diligent about tracking employee behaviour while on the clock, then there is no better program available than Hubstaff. You will have the ability to log screenshots, track keystroke volume, and route moves via GPS tracking.
Regrettably, if you’re looking for a platform that goes the excess mile to enable customization, irregular data entry, or a more advanced reporting arrangement, then Hubstaff will not be right for you. Additionally, should you choose a different system, your employees will thank you for not requiring them to download a secondary program for monitoring time–especially when you consider that every other instrument we examined makes this possible within the boundaries of their web-based UI. Software Productivity Sloc/Hr