Background Time And Activity Tracker
When picking a time monitoring tool, it is important to comprehend the many different kinds of tools out there. Tools such as Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all feature powerful time monitoring features for professional services companies. On the other hand, the time monitoring features in such tools are available only within larger project management (PM) suites. Because of this, you’re paying a lot more cash for things such as file storage, in-app chat, progress reports, and shift administration. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you’ll discover pure play time tracking tools like Hubstaff (which begins at $5 a month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice instrument for time tracking. Time And Activity Tracker
Characteristics and Utilization
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) is designed with a appealing left-rail blue navigation bar which leaves lots of room on the right-hand side of your display 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 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 every member, their latest jobs, and how active they’ve been over the past week. This is a solid PM data visualization that lets you immediately differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it instantly calls to focus projects which are getting more than sufficient attention and projects that are being neglected.
There are two methods 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 program. With the timesheet feature, you log your hours since you probably did with pen and paper through the analog era of time tracking. Essentially, you work your shift, you add time to your timesheet, and you also sign off on it. This is a fairly standard procedure of tracking time. Regrettably, because Hubstaff doesn’t allow you to add future time, you can not use the platform as a shift planner. Administrators can let users manually edit previously submitted timesheets, and they can induce users to require a motive to ensure they’re actually adding hours that they worked. Admins can also set up the system to remind users to begin monitoring time should they have not clocked into the machine in a little while.
The next, and most bothersome, way of tracking moment in Hubstaff is using the stopwatch feature. In each solution we analyzed, this element is available within the confines of your web browserevery solution that’s, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you’re required to download an native desktop application that lives within a separate window. In it, you can choose your job, press Start, along with your timer will begin counting. When you’re done, your action and your screenshots will be transmitted to the principal hub. The native program will take a picture at random intervals of up to 3 shots per hour depending on how often the admin wants to spy on workers. Screenshots can be partly blurred not to capture sensitive information on each catch, but a lot of the display is left unsullied you’ll still get a feeling of whether the display is on work-related or play-related content. This is an annoyingly complex and convoluted means to manually monitor time, especially if you’re jumping from task to task through 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 apps is exactly the same as it is on the desktop program. The mobile programs let admins monitor movements via GPS tracking. This gives you an summary of how much motion was done by your worker by capturing location information at different stages.
The Schedules tab lets you assign times and dates for employees to do the job. It is possible to put a minimum number of hours to operate, a lunch break interval, and you’ll be able to allow it to be a recurring shift. The tool’s reporting applications is horribly basic: You’ll get access to weekly, daily, project, and member view reports in addition to a”custom” report that lets you filter data from the aforementioned reports. When compared to the PM solutions within this class, Hubstaff’s coverage is utterly embarrassing consequently, if your goal is to understand and evolve based on when and how your employees manage time, you’d be much better off working using Zoho Projects, our Editors’ Choice for PM.
Admins receive notifications once they’ve attained weekly staffing and budget limitations. Invoices are automatically calculated and made depending on the time each worker worked, in addition to his or her related pay rate. You can set up automatic citizenship through PayPal, which enables you to automate payments based on time monitored within the tool. Remember: Users do not need to send time through for acceptance, so automatic payments will be made whether employees were wrong or right concerning the number of hours that they worked. There’s no reminder for managers to double-check every timesheet before automatic payments move out thus, if you are concerned about making false payments, then you can place PayPal payments to guide. Time And Activity Tracker
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 want to pay them as soon as the work is finished. The Basic $5-per-month plan gives you access to simple time monitoring tools, an employee payment schedule manager, 24/7 support, and user settings which can be handled in an employee-by-employee basis. Moreover, this program enables you to keep track of whether your employees are working by allowing you document screenshots while they function in addition to monitor mouse and keyboard activity during shifts. Of the five tools we’ve tested, Hubstaff is the only tool which offered this level of insight into the way that employees are progressing. Although keyboard and screen tracking are useful (albeit over-reaching) attributes for a shift screen, Hubstaff’s implementation leaves much to be wanted (more on this later).
The $9-per-user-per-month Premium program includes everything you’ll discover 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 package also comes with a lightweight schedulingtool that gives administrators the power to assign shifts and assign tasks from within the console. Premium customers can also use the application to make invoices and create PayPal payments automatically. Customers that pay yearly will receive two weeks free (for both price tiers).
Compared 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 account, 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, and an $80 foundation fee per month for groups with over a hundred users. The base fee, which Hubstaff doesn’t charge, makes TSheets marginally more expensive than Hubstaff, even at Hubstaff’s Premium level.
If you’re more interested in those hulky PM solutions, then you’ll want to pony up a bit more money. Mavenlink’s cheapest program that includes time tracking costs $39 per user per month. Zoho’s cheapest time tracking plan is $25 a month for an unlimited number of consumers (which is a fairly good deal if you need all the excess PM features). Wrike’s lowest 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 company has released a significant update in late 2018 that specifically addressed specific feature weaknesses or omissions, such as adding a internet timer, fleshing out reporting options, and adding activity levels and monitor monitoring. We’ll be analyzing these features shortly and you’ll see the results in an upcoming update to this review.
Aside from its draconian screengrab and keystroke tracking, Hubstaff doesn’t do a very good job allowing for deeper change oversight. For example, Hubstaff doesn’t allow advanced tracking. If you operate a trucking company and you are less concerned about the number of hours a trucker drove than the distance driven, then there’s no way to handle that in Hubstaff. Users can add notes to an empty text field, but that data will not be blended into reports. As a consequence, that you can’t use it to learn about who is working, how they’re functioning, and what they’re producing (other than the amount of hours monitored ). TSheets not only gives you this choice, it provides you the ability to create six additional customizable advanced monitoring fields. You can even put in a question for every clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an episode? Yes. No.”) And the system forces the user to reply to the queries at the end of every shift or they will not be able to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is all about tracking work, the application doesn’t permit for IP address limitations, so your employees can say they’re working from the workplace but they can actually be operating from a cruise boat in the Bahamas (unless they are using the cell program to track time). This is a normal feature that’s available in virtually every other tool we analyzed. Hubstaff also doesn’t enable admins to require users to snap a photograph if they report to work. I guess it’s overkill to make someone take a selfie right before you start recording their display and monitoring their keystrokes, but TSheets enables you to set this as a necessity (which makes sense, especially if you’re tracking tasks done out of a computer, such as retail, building, or amusement work). The program also does not let users clock via a phone call, which is a component TSheets and 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. But the platform also offers a lot of the hallmarks of worker tracking tools. Hubstaff’s employee tracking attributes include keystroke logging, URL and application tracking, GPS and place tracking, and action screenshots.
As soon as you place your customers and they download the timer program 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 most important display but any connected monitors as well. Hubstaff doesn’t log keys but it does monitor the action provided through the mouse and keyboard, giving companies a calculation of just how busy the worker is. This info all winds up on the Hubstaff dashboard from the Task tab. This is where you can then pick a user from the drop-down menu to view their screenshots connected with activity data.
If it comes to program and URL tracking, Hubstaff goes beyond just tracking time to learn what websites and programs an employee opened or visited and how long they were there. The Reports section can subsequently run custom questions on vectors such as program usage mapped against time and activity. Hubstaff incorporates with project and job management tools such as Asana and Trello to filter reports from particular projects or tasks to track productivity.
1 unique employee tracking feature supplied is GPS location tracking through Hubstaff’s mobile app. While the mobile app can’t take screenshots or catch mobile app and site activity, it lets you monitor and log location for workers working in the field. While the thickness of monitoring data and surveillance features can not measure up to a powerhouse tool for example Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for employee tracking, Hubstaff has a helpful choice of features for employers that want a little more oversight. Time And Activity Tracker
Hubstaff is an easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time tracking tool. If you are diligent about tracking employee behaviour while on the clockthen there is no better software available than Hubstaff. You’ll be able to log screenshots, track keystroke volume, and path moves via GPS monitoring.
Regrettably, if you’re looking for a platform which goes the extra mile to allow customization, atypical information entry, or even a much more sophisticated reporting arrangement, then Hubstaff will not be perfect for you. Additionally, in case you opt for a different program, your employees will thank you for not needing them to obtain a secondary program for monitoring time–especially when you consider that every other instrument we examined makes this potential within the confines of their online UI. Time And Activity Tracker