Introduction User Productivity System Definition
When picking a time monitoring tool, it is important to comprehend the many different types of tools out there. Tools like Mavenlink, Wrike, and Zoho Projects all include powerful time monitoring features for professional services businesses. However, the time tracking features in these tools are available only within bigger project management (PM) suites. Because of this, you’re 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 find pure play time monitoring tools like Hubstaff (which begins at $5 a month per user) and TSheets, our Editors’ Choice instrument for time tracking. User Productivity System Definition
Characteristics and Utilization
Hubstaff’s user interface (UI) is designed with an attractive left-rail blue navigation bar that leaves plenty of room around 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 have worked over the past seven days. You’ll also see a list of each member, their most recent jobs, and how active they’ve been over the past week. This is a solid PM data visualization that allows you instantly differentiate between workhorses and do-nothings, and it instantly calls to attention projects which are becoming more than enough focus and projects that are being disregarded.
There are two ways to put in 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. With the timesheet feature, you log in your hours as you likely did with pencil and paper through the analog era of time monitoring. Basically, if you work your change, you add the time to your timesheet, and you 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’t use the platform for a shift organizer. Administrators can allow users manually edit formerly submitted timesheets, and they’re able to force users to require a motive to guarantee they’re really adding hours they worked. Admins can also set up the system to let users to start monitoring time if they have not clocked to the system in a little while.
The second, and most frustrating, way of tracking time in Hubstaff is using the stopwatch feature. In each solution we analyzed, this element is available within the boundaries of your web browser–every alternative that is, except for Hubstaff. With Hubstaff, you are required to download an native desktop application that lives within another window. In it, you can choose your job, press Start, and your own timer will start counting. When you are done, your action and your screenshots will be transmitted to the main hub. The native app is going to take a picture at random intervals of up to 3 shots per hour depending on how frequently the admin wants to spy on employees. Screenshots can be partly fuzzy to not record sensitive information on each grab, but a lot of this screen is left unsullied that you’ll still get a sense of if the screen is really on work-related or play-related content. This can be an annoyingly complex and complicated way to manually track time, particularly if you’re jumping from task to task throughout the day. Hubstaff must discover 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 exactly the same as it is on the desktop program. The mobile apps let admins monitor motions via GPS tracking. This gives you an overview of just how much motion was performed by your worker by capturing location data at different stages.
The Schedules tab enables you to assign dates and times for employees to work. You can put 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 horribly basic: You’ll get access to weekly, daily, project, and member view reports as well as a”custom” report which lets you filter information from the above reports. When compared to the PM options within this class, Hubstaff’s reporting is downright embarrassing so, if your goal is to understand and evolve based on when and how your employees manage time, you would be better off working with Zoho Projects, our Editors’ Choice for PM.
Admins receive notifications once they’ve attained weekly staffing and funding limitations. Invoices are automatically calculated and created based on the time each employee worked, in addition to their related pay rate. You can set up automatic payroll through PayPal, which enables you to automate payments based on time monitored within the tool. Keep in mind: Users don’t have to send time through for acceptance, therefore automatic payments will be made whether employees were right or wrong concerning the amount of hours they worked. There is no reminder for supervisors to double-check each timesheet ahead of automatic payments go out so, if you are concerned about making false payments, then you can set PayPal payments to guide. User Productivity System Definition
Cost And Options
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 need to pay them as soon as the job is done. The Basic $5-per-month program provides you access to easy time monitoring tools, an employee payment schedule supervisor, 24/7 support, and user preferences which can be handled on an employee-by-employee basis. Additionally, this plan enables you to keep tabs on whether your employees are operating by allowing you record screenshots while they work in addition to monitor mouse and keyboard activity during changes. Of the five tools we tested, Hubstaff is the only instrument that offered this level of insight into how employees are progressing. Although screen and keyboard monitoring are helpful (albeit over-reaching) attributes for a shift screen, Hubstaff’s implementation leaves much to be desired (more on this later).
The 9-per-user-per-month Premium program includes everything you’ll find in the Basic program, but you will also get access to Hubstaff’s application programming interface (API) to integrate the tool with other third party applications. The Premium bundle also has a lightweight schedulingtool that provides administrators the capability to assign shifts and delegate tasks from inside the console. Premium clients can also use the tool to make invoices and create PayPal payments mechanically. Clients that pay yearly will get two weeks free (for both cost tiers).
Compared to TSheets, its closest competition in our roundup, Hubstaff is fairly priced, especially given the extra monitoring features that are unavailable in competitive tools. TSheets offers a fundamental free accounts, in addition to a $4-per-user-per-month accounts that charges a $16 base fee a month for groups who have fewer than 100 users, and an $80 foundation fee per month for teams with over 100 users. The base fee, which Hubstaff doesn’t charge, makes TSheets slightly more costly than Hubstaff, even in Hubstaff’s Premium level.
If you are more interested in those hulky PM solutions, then you will want to pony up a little more money. Mavenlink’s cheapest plan that includes time monitoring costs $39 per user per month. Zoho’s cheapest time tracking plan is $25 per month for an unlimited number of consumers (which is a fairly solid deal if you want all the excess PM attributes ). Wrike’s cheapest time monitoring plan prices $24.80 per user per month.
What Should Be Added
Editor’s note: Since our first overview of Hubstaff, the company has released a major update in late 2018 that specifically addressed specific feature weaknesses or omissions, such as adding a web timer, fleshing out reporting options, and adding action levels and monitor monitoring. We’ll be testing these attributes shortly and you will 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 shift oversight. By way of example, Hubstaff does not allow advanced tracking. If you run a trucking business and you’re less concerned about how many hours each trucker drove than the distance driven, then there’s no way to manage that in Hubstaff. Users may add notes to an empty text area, but that information won’t be mixed into accounts. This means you can’t use it to find out about who’s working, how they’re working, and what they are producing (other than the number of hours tracked). TSheets not only gives you this choice, it provides you the ability to make six additional customizable advanced tracking fields. You might also put in a question for every single clock-out (i.e.,”Was there an episode? Yes. No.”) Along with the system forces the user to reply to the questions at the end 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 permit for IP address limitations, which means your workers 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 cell app to monitor time). This is a standard feature that’s available in almost every other tool we tested. Hubstaff also doesn’t enable admins to require users to snap a photo if they report to work. I guess it’s overkill to generate somebody take a selfie right before you get started recording their display and monitoring their keystrokes, but TSheets lets you place this as a necessity (which makes sense, especially if you’re monitoring tasks done outside of a computer, like retail, construction, or entertainment work). The program also doesn’t allow users clock in via a telephone call, which can be a component TSheets and other service providers make readily available for employees who do not have a smartphone.
Monitoring Employee Work
We have touched on how a number of Hubstaff’s more Enormous Brother-like attributes factor into time monitoring. But the platform also offers many of the hallmarks of worker tracking tools. Hubstaff’s employee monitoring features include keystroke logging, URL and program tracking, GPS and location tracking, and activity screenshots.
Once you set your users and they download the timer program onto their server, the desktop program not only tracks time but will require screenshots randomly or at custom intervals, for example three screenshots per minute. This applies not just to the user’s main display but any attached monitors too. Hubstaff doesn’t log keys however, it will track the activity provided through the mouse and keyboard, providing employers a calculation of just how busy the employee is. This data all winds up around the Hubstaff dashboard in the Task tab. This is where you can then select an individual in the drop-down menu to view their screenshots correlated with activity data.
When it comes to application and URL tracking, Hubstaff goes beyond just tracking time to learn what sites and apps a worker opened or visited and how long they had been there. The Reports section can subsequently run custom questions on vectors like app usage mapped against time and activity. Hubstaff integrates with project and task management tools like Asana and Trello to filter reports from particular tasks or projects to monitor productivity.
One unique employee monitoring feature supplied is GPS location tracking through Hubstaff’s mobile program. While the cellular app can not take screenshots or capture mobile app and website activity, it allows you to track and log location for workers working in the field. While the depth of monitoring surveillance and data features can not step up to a grid application for example Teramind, our Editors’ Choice for worker monitoring, Hubstaff has a helpful selection of attributes for companies that want a little more oversight. User Productivity System Definition
Hubstaff is an easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time monitoring tool. If you are diligent about tracking employee behaviour while on the clockthen there is no better program accessible than Hubstaff. You will have the ability to log screenshots, monitor keystroke volume, and route movements via GPS monitoring.
Regrettably, if you’re looking for a platform that goes the excess mile to allow customization, irregular data entry, or a much more sophisticated reporting structure, then Hubstaff won’t be perfect for you. Additionally, should you opt for another system, your employees will thank you for not needing them to obtain a secondary program for tracking time–particularly when you consider that every other tool we examined makes this possible within the confines of their online UI. User Productivity System Definition