Did you know that 73% of organizations are satisfied with the results of automating business processes and tools? An analysis of data from American Payroll Association revealed that automatic time trackers can alleviate lost productivity and help companies regain $666,400.00 in annual wages.
If you’re not using time tracking software, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that you still struggle to get projects completed on time. Come to think of it. How else can you get accurate estimates on the amount of time you spend on your tasks? You probably waste a lot of time on unnecessary activities without even realizing it.
Time tracking tools help you identify the times of day when you’re more focused and motivated. They also show you the apps and websites you spend most of your time on to help you set your priorities right. You can then schedule your routine to work during the hours when you’re most productive.
To help you get things done promptly, every single time, here’s a review of the best automatic time tracking software of 2023.
Traqq – Best Employee Monitoring
As an employer, the success of your business depends on teamwork. According to Dimension Research, 83% of workers depend on technology for efficient collaboration. This calls for a time tracking app that can record employee activity, without interfering with their tasks.
Traqq has rich employee monitoring features to help track what they are working on, their performance, and progress. The detailed stats and timesheets graphically display each employee’s activity levels, making it easy for managers to analyze individual and overall team performance.
Traqq also monitors what apps and websites are being used, encouraging transparency among team members.
The automatic time tracker simplifies the process of creating reports, which you can filter by different categories. With Traqq’s smart notifications and alerts, you won’t forget to turn on the timer when working, ensuring that every minute you work is recorded.
Traqq prides itself in ethical employee monitoring and blurs all screenshots and screen recordings to show only the necessary details. All sensitive information is blocked to protect the privacy of the workers.
Traqq’s handy features include:
- Activity monitoring
- Time tracking
- Manual time adjustments
- Payroll management
- Offline tracking
- Productivity and performance analysis
- Traqq offers a Premium Starter pack with a maximum of three seats (users) free of charge. The plan offers all the premium features and is ideal for small teams.
- If you manage a team of at least four people, you can upgrade to the Premium Teams tier at only $6 per seat per month. You can sign up for a 21-day free trial to check out what it offers.
- For teams of 100 people and above, you can contact the sales team for a customized plan that suits your company’s needs.
Windows and macOS.
Traqq makes keeping records of hours worked and projects budgeting a breeze. It offers a bird’s eye view of all employees’ activities and progress for the day, week, or month for quick analysis.
Clockify – Free Time Tracker
Clockify time tracking app is best suited for teams, students, as well as freelancers. It’s a simple automatic time tracker that helps you and your teams log billable hours for all projects. Clockify, like Traqq, lets you record work hours using a timer and keep tabs on frequently used apps and websites.
The app shows you the total time spent on projects, what your team is working on, and what happens throughout the day. When it comes to reporting, you can filter the data by day, activity, or users. You can also share reports with your clients via a link.
The tool even allows managers to track time on projects and set budget and time approximations. This is an important feature, especially since PMI’s 2017 Pulse of the Profession survey says that 28% of project failures are a result of inaccurate cost estimates.
Clockify’s main features include:
- Time tracking
- Project management
- Budget monitoring
If you find the free plan lacking, you can upgrade to one of the paid plans to get advanced features and more control:
- Basic plan: $3.99 per user per month if billed annually or $4.99 if billed monthly.
- Standard plan: $5.49 per user per month if billed annually or $6.99 billed monthly.
- Pro plan: $7.99 per user per month if billed annually or $9.99 billed monthly.
- Enterprise plan: $11.99 per user per month if billed annually or $14.99 billed monthly.
Windows, macOS, Web, Android, iOS, and Linux.
Clockify also offers integrations with web apps like Freshbooks, Jira, Trello, Gitlab, Basecamp, and so on.
QuickBooks Time – GPS Tracking
Formerly known as TSheets, QuickBooks Time is a time tracking software that allows employees to clock in or out from anywhere. The GPS and geofencing capabilities ensure that employers can see the exact location of each worker, improving team coordination and efficiency. This tool comes with a mobile timesheet app to ensure that employees get the job done no matter where they are.
It’s ideal when managing a large team working in the field and is a favorite for property developers, construction companies, and other field-based businesses. QuickBooks Time’s project reporting allows managers to see how much time employees spend on each task. With the report, they can create a payroll summary as well as plan on future projects.
Some of QuickBooks Time features include:
- Employee scheduling
- GPS time tracker and geofencing
- Time clock kiosk
- Alerts and approvals by text
- Project tracker
- Premium: $20 base fee per month, plus $8 per user per month.
- Elite: $40 base fee per month, plus $10 per user per month.
All plans include one free admin, expert support, real-time reports, job and shift scheduling, and so on.
Web, macOS, Windows, Linux, Android, iOS.
Rescue Time – Best for Focus and Motivation
Rescue Time is an automatic time tracking app that works silently in the background. It’s a site-blocking app that helps block distracting websites, so you don’t get tempted to check your Instagram or Facebook often. When you activate a Focus Session, the app blocks sites that may negatively impact your productivity. As a result, you stay focused on your tasks and end up performing optimally.
Once installed, the program automatically analyzes your work style and meeting schedule. It then customizes a daily focus work goal specifically tailored for you. Throughout the day, you’ll keep getting insights and nudges to help you stay on track.
Some outstanding features of Rescue Time include:
- App monitoring
- A comparison of Focus Session to your average time
- Your workday summary
- Lite (free plan): Users get access to all Rescue Time’s core features and functionality. However, it comes with a few limitations. For example, you can only view your stats going back two weeks. File names are also not tracked.
- Premium plan: $9 per month (billed annually).
- Team plan: $6 per person per month.
Windows 10, macOS 10.12+.
Hubstaff – Remote Employees Time Tracking Software
Hubstaff, like Traqq, offers features like employee monitoring and time tracking. It lets managers check in on what their workers are doing, allowing them to keep track of work hours and projects. It also lets employees manually adjust time entries and add descriptive notes.
Hubstaff supports automatic invoice creation, and lets you manage expenses, send invoices, and get paid directly through the tool. It also displays a list of apps and websites that team members use during their work hours. This gives you an insight into how teams spend time.
Hubstaff lets managers set budgets for tasks and projects, keeping overspending in check. The program has GPS and geofencing features that come in handy for field teams. Employees can automatically clock in or out based on their location. Like QuickBooks Time, you can also create shift schedules, get notified of missed or late shifts, and track attendance on Hubstaff.
Some of its main features include:
- Employee scheduling
- Payroll management
- Time tracking
- Employee monitoring
- Online invoicing
- GPS tracking
- Desk Free: The free plan supports only one user and has limited features.
- Desk Starter: $7 per user per month and supports one integration.
- Desk Pro: $10 per user per month. Users get unlimited integrations and more advanced features.
- Enterprise: $20 per user per month with VIP support, higher limits on public API, and unlimited job sites.
macOS, Windows 10, Android, iOS, and Web.
Timely: AI-Based Time Tracker
Timely is an AI-based automatic time tracking app that tracks time, projects, and teams. The software automates time tracking to ensure that teams waste no time on essential admin work. Timely works in the background, capturing work activity and letting you focus on what matters.
The app keeps tracked activity private to each user, who decides what they want to share. Since it records all hours worked, you’re guaranteed accurate billing. Timely also creates timesheets automatically and records both the total hours worked and apps used while the tracker is running.
The platform lets you visualize your team’s progress and performance and create custom reports that you can share with clients. Timely tracks time based on computer activity, making it ideal for contractors, remote employees, and consultants.
Some of the outstanding features of Timely include:
- Automated time tracking
- Project management
- Employee tracking
- Starter: $8 per user per month (billed annually) with limited projects and teams.
- Premium: $14 per user per month (billed annually). Users get unlimited projects and teams.
- Unlimited: $20 per user per month, with unlimited features.
- Unlimited +: Contact sales for custom pricing.
Toggl: Best for Detailed Reporting
Toggl is a simple time tracking software designed to help individuals and distributed teams work efficiently and manage their time properly. This feature-rich app offers calendar integrations, one-click timers, and automated alerts that let you know when projects are near estimated completion.
You’ll especially like Timeline, a background tracking feature that records time entries for any app or website that’s open for more than 10 seconds. If you’re among the forgetful lot, Toggl comes with an auto-tracker that prompts you to start logging your time.
If you use multiple devices, Toggl keeps the timer synced so you can keep track of tasks and projects from any device. You also get access to a basic Pomodoro timer to help you to stay focused on your tasks.
Toggl comes with a handful of features, including:
- Time tracking
- Team scheduling
- Team management
- Project tracking
- Revenue tracking
- Free plan: Gives you access to features like unlimited time tracking, unlimited projects, and a Pomodoro timer.
- Starter: $9 per user per month with additional features, such as billable rates and prepopulated project templates.
- Premium: $18 per user per month with access to Jira and Salesforce integrations, among other advanced features.
- Enterprise: Contact sales for custom pricing.
Web, macOS, Windows, Linux, Android, and iOS.
Automatic Time Tracking Vs. Manual Time Tracking
Regardless of whether you work in an office or remotely, using a time tracker will help improve your personal productivity. Now, you may wonder if an automatic time tracker is the best option for you. After all, there are plenty of manual time tracking systems out there.
Manual Time Tracking
This option involves manually reporting the time spent on a piece of work or a project. Indeed, this system requires more work. Even so, it still offers some degree of flexibility.
It will be easier for you to analyze the time you spend on a particular task. You can also include the logged time to your invoice immediately.
What’s more, if your client requests extra tasks, you can track the time separately. This option is useful when you need to assign different rates for tasks or when you need separate payments. For full manual tracking, you can also use time tracking spreadsheet to log your billable hours.
What Are the Advantages of Manual Time Tracking?
- Since employees are allowed to track their own time, they feel like they have control over their logged hours. They have stronger confidence, accountability, and transparency.
- Manual time trackers allow employees to associate time with tasks, providing them with better activity monitoring results. There will be no overlapping tasks even when a person is working on several projects at once.
- Tracking billability is another advantage this option offers. Managers can see how long it takes to complete tasks, allowing them to compare the time against the project budget.
- You can audit your business thoroughly with the ability to track non-billable hours. You can gain statistics that allow you to see how your finances, time, and workforce are structured. This way, you’ll get valuable insights for planning future projects.
What Are the Disadvantages of Manual Time Tracking?
- Indeed, manual time tracking offers more flexibility. However, employees are compelled to actively engage in monitoring their hours. This can be a problem because people can be forgetful, especially when they are swamped with work.
- Manual time tracking is also prone to human error. Naturally, it is associated with inaccurate results.
- Another problem managers may encounter is buddy punching or time theft. Of course, this can result in significant financial and productivity losses.
- In most cases, manual time tracking systems do not offer integration with other business tools. As a result, employees have to work with several apps and systems.
Automatic Time Trackers
Time clocks have been around for over a century for workforce billing and payment purposes. This concept was first introduced in 1888 when William Bundy invented the Workman’s Time Recorder.
However, time management software has considerably changed since then. In many ways, today’s time tracking technology outperforms manual timekeeping. Automated systems simplify time logging and add maximum flexibility. In most cases, it allows managers to access time logs and productivity data with ease.
What Are the Advantages of Automated Time Tracking?
- What you’ll love about automatic time trackers is how it is virtually immune to human errors and inconsistencies. If you choose the right software, you can keep the discrepancies at a minimum.
- Since manual time logs require full attention, many employees tend to neglect or forget them. With automatic time trackers, people only have to click Start. They wouldn’t have to do anything else to keep track of their work hours.
- Automated software also deters shift skipping, buddy punching, and other forms of time theft. Some apps even come with GPS location tagging or biometric scanning.
- It’s also easier to monitor performance with automatic time trackers. Most tools come with monitoring features for activity levels and website/app usage. So, managers can conveniently access employee productivity reports.
What Are the Disadvantages of Automated Time Tracking?
- Many automatic time trackers take screenshots or record keyboard activities. The lack of privacy can damage workforce morale. As such, it’s important to choose a time tracker that promotes ethical employee monitoring.
- Time trackers with complex features are often difficult to customize according to a company’s needs. So, it can be challenging to predict the tool’s cost-effectiveness.
You can opt to use a manual time tracker where you manually report or fill in the time spent on a project on a journal. Let’s face it. Most of us tend to be forgetful, and this can lead to inaccuracies when tracking work hours.
That’s why automatic time tracking is recommended. Not only does such a system ensure a seamless workflow, but it also accurately captures all the time you and your employees spend on productive activities.
The good thing about using a time tracker is that it encourages transparency and prevents procrastination. Most importantly, it eliminates guesswork when it comes to calculating billable and non-billable time. For a company, this ensures that every dollar spent goes to productive work. Meanwhile, individuals and remote workers can be assured of their earnings.
If you’re the kind of person who wants to surpass expectations and overdeliver, keep tabs on your productivity with automated time tracking. With countless types of time tracking software, choose one or two that match your specific business or work model. Some of the features to look out for include accounting, monitoring, reporting, and scheduling.