Introduction Toptal Time Tracker
When choosing a time monitoring tool, it is important to comprehend the various kinds of tools out there. Tools such as Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all include robust time monitoring features for professional services companies. On the other hand, the time tracking features in these tools are available only within bigger project management (PM) suites. Because of this, you are paying much more money for things like file storage, in-app chat, progress reports, and shift management. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you will find pure play time monitoring tools such as Hubstaff (which begins at $5 per month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice instrument for time tracking. Toptal Time Tracker
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 right-hand 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 overview of the number of hours your employees have worked that day and the number of hours they have worked over the past seven days. You will also see a list of each member, their latest tasks, and how busy they’ve been over the past week. This is a strong PM data visualization that lets you immediately differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it instantly calls to attention projects that are getting more than sufficient focus and projects that are being disregarded.
There are two methods to add time in Hubstaff: You are able to construct manual timesheets with previous hours worked, or you may use the stopwatch feature on Hubstaff’s native desktop program. With the timesheet feature, you log in your hours since you likely did with pencil and paper during the analog age of time tracking. Essentially, you work your shift, you add time to your own timesheet, and you also sign off on it. This is a fairly standard method of tracking time. Regrettably, because Hubstaff does not allow you to add future time, you can not use the platform for a shift organizer. Administrators can let users manually edit formerly submitted timesheets, and they’re able to force users to need a motive to guarantee they’re really adding hours that they worked. Admins can also set up the system to let users to begin tracking time if they haven’t clocked into the system in a while.
The second, and most frustrating, way of tracking moment in Hubstaff is using the stopwatch feature. In each solution we analyzed, this component can be found within the boundaries of your internet browser–every alternative that is, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you’re expected to download a native desktop application that lives within a separate window. In it, you can select your project, press Start, and your timer will begin counting. When you’re done, your action and your screenshots will be sent to the main hub. The native app is going to take a photo at random periods of up to 3 shots per hour based on how often the admin wants to spy on workers. Screenshots can be partly fuzzy to not capture sensitive information on each grab, but enough of this display is left unsullied you’ll still get a sense of whether the display is on work-related or play-related content. This can be an annoyingly complex and complicated way to manually monitor time, particularly if you’re jumping from task to task through the day. Hubstaff must discover 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 programs is precisely the same as it’s on the desktop app. The mobile apps let admins monitor movements via GPS monitoring. This provides you an overview of how much movement was performed by your worker by capturing location information at distinct stages.
The Schedules tab lets you assign times and dates for employees to work. You can set a minimum number of hours to work, a lunch break interval, and you can allow it to be a recurring shift. The program’s reporting software is terribly basic: You will receive access to weekly, daily, job, and penis view reports in addition to a”habit” report which allows you filter data from the aforementioned reports. When compared to the PM solutions in this course, Hubstaff’s coverage is utterly embarrassing consequently, if your target is to learn and evolve based on if and how your employees handle time, you’d be better off working with Zoho Projects, our Editors’ Choice for PM.
Admins receive notifications once they’ve attained weekly staffing and funding limits. Invoices are automatically calculated and made based on the time each employee worked, as well as their associated pay rate. It is possible to set up automatic citizenship through PayPal, which enables you to automate payments based on time tracked within the tool. Keep in mind: Users do not need to send time for approval, therefore automatic payments will be made whether workers were wrong or right about the number of hours that they worked. There’s not any reminder for managers to double-check every timesheet ahead of automatic payments go out thus, if you’re worried about making bogus payments, then you can set PayPal payments to guide. Toptal Time Tracker
Price And Alternatives
Hubstaff was built to provide you with Big Brother-level oversight into when workers are working, what they’re doing while they operate, and what you need to cover them when the job is done. The Basic $5-per-month program provides you access to simple time monitoring tools, a worker payment program manager, 24/7 support, and user preferences that may be handled on an employee-by-employee basis. Moreover, this program enables you to keep track of whether or not your employees are working by allowing you document screenshots while they work in addition to monitor mouse and keyboard action during changes. Of the five tools we’ve analyzed, Hubstaff is the only tool that provided this amount of insight into the way that employees are progressing. Although screen and keyboard tracking are useful (albeit over-reaching) attributes for a change monitor, Hubstaff’s implementation leaves much to be wanted (more about this later).
The 9-per-user-per-month Premium program includes all you’ll discover in the fundamental plan, but you will 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 changes and assign tasks from inside the console. Premium customers may also use the application to make invoices and make PayPal payments mechanically. Customers that pay annually will receive two months free (for both price tiers).
In comparison to TSheets, its nearest competition in our roundup, Hubstaff is reasonably priced, especially given the extra monitoring features that are unavailable in competitive resources. TSheets supplies a fundamental free accounts, as well as a $4-per-user-per-month account that charges a $16 base fee a month for teams with fewer than 100 users, along with an $80 foundation fee monthly for groups with more than a hundred users. The base fee, which Hubstaff doesn’t charge, makes TSheets slightly more costly than Hubstaff, even in Hubstaff’s Premium level.
If you’re more interested in these 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 monitoring plan is $25 a month for an infinite number of consumers (that is a pretty good deal if you need all of the extra PM attributes ). Wrike’s lowest time tracking plan costs $24.80 per user per month.
What Ought to Be Added
Editor’s note: Since our first overview of Hubstaff, the business has released a significant update 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 tracking. We are going to be analyzing these attributes shortly and you’ll see the results in an upcoming update to this review.
Aside from its draconian screengrab and keystroke tracking, Hubstaff does not do an excellent job allowing for deeper change supervision. For instance, Hubstaff does not allow advanced tracking. If you run a trucking company and you are less concerned about how many hours a trucker drove than the distance driven, then there is no way to handle that in Hubstaff. Users can add notes to a empty text area, but that data won’t be mixed into reports. As a consequence, that you can not use it to find out about who is working, how they are functioning, and what they’re generating (other than the amount of hours tracked). TSheets not only gives you this choice, it gives you the ability to create six additional customizable advanced monitoring fields. You can also put in a question for every single clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an incident? Yes. No.”) And the system forces the user to reply to the questions at the close of each change or they won’t be able to clock out.
As hardcore as Hubstaff is all about tracking work, the tool doesn’t allow for IP address limitations, which means your employees can say they are working from the office but they can actually be operating from a cruise ship in the Bahamas (unless they’re using the mobile app 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 photo when they report to work. I guess it is overkill to make someone take a selfie before you start recording their screen and tracking their keystrokes, but TSheets enables you to set this as a necessity (which makes sense, particularly if you’re monitoring tasks done out of a computer, like retail, construction, or entertainment work). The software also does not allow users clock via a phone call, which can be a component TSheets and other service providers make available for employees who do not have a smartphone.
Tracking Employee Work
We have touched on how some of Hubstaff’s more Enormous Brother-like features factor into time tracking. But the platform also has a lot of the hallmarks of employee monitoring tools. Hubstaff’s employee tracking attributes include keystroke logging, URL and program tracking, GPS and location monitoring, and action screenshots.
Once you place your customers and they download the timer app onto their server, the desktop program not only tracks time but will take screenshots randomly or at custom intervals, for example three screenshots each minute. This applies not only to the user’s most important display but any attached monitors too. Hubstaff does not log keys but it does monitor the activity provided via the mouse and computer keyboard, providing employers a calculation of just how busy the worker is. This data all winds up on the Hubstaff dashboard in the Task tab. This is where you can then select a user from the drop-down menu to view their screenshots correlated with activity data.
If it comes to program and URL tracking, Hubstaff goes beyond just tracking time to see what websites and apps a worker visited or opened and how long they were there. The Reports module may then run custom queries on vectors like program usage mapped against time and activity. Hubstaff incorporates with job and task management tools such as Asana and Trello to filter reports from particular tasks or projects to monitor productivity.
One unique employee monitoring feature offered is GPS location monitoring through Hubstaff’s mobile program. While the mobile app can’t take screenshots or catch mobile app and site activity, it lets you track and log location for workers working in the area. While the thickness of monitoring data and surveillance features can not step up to a grid application such as Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for employee tracking, Hubstaff includes a helpful choice of features for employers that want a little more oversight. Toptal Time Tracker
Hubstaff is an easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time tracking tool. If you’re diligent about tracking employee behaviour while on the clockthen there’s no better program accessible than Hubstaff. You’ll be able to log screenshots, track keystroke volume, and path movements via GPS monitoring.
Unfortunately, if you’re looking for a platform which goes the excess mile to enable customization, irregular data entry, or even a much more advanced reporting structure, then Hubstaff will not be right for you. In addition, in case you opt for a different system, your employees will thank you for not requiring them to obtain a secondary app for tracking time–particularly when you consider that every other instrument we examined makes this potential within the confines of their online UI. Toptal Time Tracker