Introduction Tools To Be More Productive
When picking a time monitoring tool, it’s important to comprehend the many different types of tools out there. Tools such as Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all feature powerful time tracking features for professional services businesses. On the other hand, the time tracking features in such tools are available only within larger project management (PM) suites. Because of this, you are paying a lot more money for things such as file storage, in-app discussion, progress reports, and change administration. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you will discover pure play time tracking tools such as Hubstaff (which starts at $5 per month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice instrument for time tracking. Tools To Be More Productive
Characteristics 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 display 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 the number of hours your employees have worked this day and the number of hours they’ve worked over the past seven days. You will also see a list of each member, their latest jobs, and how busy they’ve been over the past week. This is a solid PM data visualization which allows you immediately differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it instantly calls to focus projects which are getting more than enough attention and jobs that are being neglected.
There are two methods to add time in Hubstaff: You can build manual timesheets with previous hours worked, or you may use the stopwatch feature on Hubstaff’s native desktop program. Together with the timesheet attribute, you log your hours as you probably did with pen and paper through the analog age of time tracking. Basically, if you work your shift, you add the time to your timesheet, and you also sign off on it. This is a fairly standard procedure of tracking time. Unfortunately, because Hubstaff doesn’t allow you to add future time, you can’t use the platform for a shift planner. Administrators can let users manually edit previously submitted timesheets, and they’re able to force users to require a reason to guarantee they’re really adding hours that they worked. Admins may also set the system up to remind users to begin tracking time if they haven’t clocked to the system in a little while.
The next, and most frustrating, way of tracking moment in Hubstaff is using the stopwatch feature. In every solution we analyzed, this element is available within the boundaries of your web browser–every solution that’s, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you’re expected to download an native desktop application that resides within another window. In it, you can choose your project, press Start, along with your timer will begin counting. When you’re done, your action and your screenshots will be transmitted to the main hub. The native app is going to take a photo at random intervals of up to 3 shots per hour based on how frequently the admin would like to spy on employees. Screenshots can be partially blurred to not record sensitive information on every grab, but enough of the screen 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 complex and complicated way to manually track time, particularly if you’re jumping from task to task through the day. Hubstaff must discover a way to bring the stopwatch and 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 exactly the same as it’s on the desktop app. The mobile apps let admins monitor motions via GPS tracking. This provides you an overview of how much motion was done by your worker by capturing location information at different stages.
The Schedules tab enables you to assign times and dates for employees to work. It is possible to put a minimum number of hours to operate, a lunch break duration, and you can make it a recurring shift. The program’s reporting software is horribly basic: You’ll receive access to weekly, daily, project, and member view reports in addition to a”custom” report which lets you filter data from the aforementioned reports. When compared to the PM solutions within this course, Hubstaff’s reporting is downright embarrassing consequently, 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 reached weekly staffing and funding limits. Invoices are automatically calculated and made based on the time each employee worked, as well as his or her associated pay rate. You can set up automatic payroll through PayPal, which enables you to automate payments based on time monitored inside the application. Keep in mind: Users don’t have to send time through for approval, so automatic payments will be made whether workers were wrong or right about the number of hours they worked. There’s no reminder for managers to double-check each timesheet before automatic payments move out thus, if you’re worried about making false payments, then you can place PayPal payments to guide. Tools To Be More Productive
Price And Alternatives
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 want to pay them as soon as the job is done. The Fundamental $5-per-month program gives you access to easy time monitoring tools, an employee payment program supervisor, 24/7 support, and user preferences which may be handled in an employee-by-employee basis. Moreover, this plan enables you to keep tabs on whether or not your employees are working by letting you record screenshots while they function in addition to monitor mouse and keyboard action during changes. Of the five tools we tested, Hubstaff is the only tool which offered this amount of insight into how employees are progressing. Although screen and keyboard tracking are helpful (albeit over-reaching) features for a shift monitor, Hubstaff’s implementation leaves much to be desired (more about this later).
The 9-per-user-per-month Premium plan includes all you’ll discover in the fundamental program, but you will also get access to Hubstaff’s application programming interface (API) to integrate the application with other third-party software. The Premium package also comes with a lightweight schedulingtool that gives administrators the power to assign shifts and delegate tasks from within the console. Premium customers may also use the tool to make invoices and make PayPal payments mechanically. Clients that pay annually will get two weeks free (for both price 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 resources. TSheets offers a basic free accounts, as well as a $4-per-user-per-month accounts that charges a $16 base fee a month for teams with fewer than 100 users, and a $80 base fee monthly for groups with over 100 users. The base fee, which Hubstaff doesn’t 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 need to pony up a bit more cash. Mavenlink’s cheapest program that includes time tracking costs $39 per user per month. Zoho’s cheapest time tracking plan is $25 per month for an infinite number of users (that is a pretty good deal if you need all of the extra PM attributes ). Wrike’s lowest time tracking 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 certain feature flaws or omissions, including adding a internet timer, fleshing out reporting choices, and adding activity levels and monitor tracking. We’ll be testing these attributes shortly and you’ll see the results in an upcoming update to this review.
Besides its draconian screengrab and keystroke monitoring, Hubstaff doesn’t do an excellent job allowing for deeper shift oversight. By way of instance, Hubstaff doesn’t allow advanced tracking. If you run a trucking business and you are less concerned about how many hours a trucker drove than the distance driven, then there’s no way to manage this in Hubstaff. Users can add notes to a empty text field, but that data will not be blended into accounts. This means you can not use it to find out about who is functioning, how they’re functioning, and what they are generating (other than the number of hours tracked). TSheets not only gives you this choice, it gives you the ability to make six extra customizable advanced tracking fields. You might also put in a query for every single clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an episode? Yes. No.”) And the system forces the user to reply to the questions at the end of each shift or they will not be able to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is about tracking work, the tool does not allow for IP address restrictions, which means your workers can say they’re working from the workplace but they could actually be operating from a cruise boat in the Bahamas (unless they are using the mobile program to track time). This is a standard feature that’s available in virtually every other instrument we tested. Hubstaff also doesn’t enable admins to require users to snap a photograph if they report to work. I guess it’s overkill to generate somebody take a selfie before you start recording their screen and tracking their keystrokes, but TSheets lets you place this as a necessity (which makes sense, particularly if you’re tracking tasks done out of a computer, like electronic, construction, or amusement work). The software also does not let users clock via a telephone call, which is an element TSheets and other service providers make readily available for workers who do not have a smartphone.
Tracking Employee Work
We have touched on how some of Hubstaff’s more Big Brother-like features factor into time monitoring. However, the platform also has many of the hallmarks of employee monitoring tools. Hubstaff’s employee monitoring attributes include keystroke logging, URL and application tracking, GPS and place monitoring, and action screenshots.
As soon as you place your customers and they download the timer app onto their machine, the desktop program not only monitors time but will take screenshots randomly or at custom intervals, for example three screenshots per minute. This applies not only to the user’s most important screen but any attached monitors too. Hubstaff doesn’t log keys but it will track the activity provided via the mouse and computer keyboard, giving employers a calculation of how active the employee is. This data all winds up around the Hubstaff dashboard from the Task tab. This is where you can then select a user from the drop-down menu to see their screenshots connected with action data.
When it comes to program and URL tracking, Hubstaff goes beyond just tracking time to learn what websites and apps an employee opened or visited and how long they were there. The Reports module may subsequently run custom questions on vectors such as app usage mapped against time and activity. Hubstaff incorporates with job and task management tools such as Asana and Trello to filter reports by particular tasks or projects to monitor productivity.
1 unique employee tracking feature offered is GPS location monitoring through Hubstaff’s mobile app. While the mobile app can’t take screenshots or capture mobile app and site activity, it lets you track and log location for workers working in the field. While the depth of tracking data and surveillance features can not step up to a powerhouse tool such as Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for worker monitoring, Hubstaff includes a helpful selection of features for companies that want a little more oversight. Tools To Be More Productive
Hubstaff is an easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time monitoring tool. If you are diligent about monitoring employee behaviour while on the clockthen there’s no better software accessible than Hubstaff. You will be able to log screenshots, monitor keystroke volume, and path movements via GPS tracking.
Unfortunately, if you’re looking for a platform that goes the excess mile to allow customization, irregular data entry, or a more advanced reporting structure, then Hubstaff won’t be perfect for you. In addition, should you opt for a different program, your employees will thank you for not requiring them to download a secondary app for tracking time–especially when you consider that every other tool we reviewed makes this potential within the confines of their web-based UI. Tools To Be More Productive