Top 5 time tracking apps
A funny thing about time
A formal description of the concept of time might include that objects and events continually transition from the past into the present and through to the future. Time has long been an important topic for people down the ages in religion, philosophy, and science.
Whether it was the Sun or the Earth that was at the the center of the universe, ancient civilizations understood that the passage of time could be measured by the motion of our star with a sundial. They also understood that there was a yearly cycle to the Sun and Earth’s relationship.
The Aztecs, the Maya and the Egyptians all understood the principle and designed helio-based time measuring devices. Stonehenge was designed around principles derived from celestial observation with the annually repeating northern hemisphere summer solstice exerting a key influence.
Time is one of those funny things. Some people really never give it much thought. But others are completely obsessed with it. Some people aspire to owning expensive exotic timekeepers, while other’s want nothing more than a cheap one from a bargain store.
Ever since the arrival of early ‘brick’ mobile handsets, we’ve had an alternative to wearing a wristwatch or carrying other dedicated mechanical or digital timekeepers. With smartphone clock apps synced with time servers regulated by atomic clocks, for everyday purposes, total accuracy is now within reach of almost everybody…
…but some people are still habitually late! Some people over run on the time budgeted for tasks! Some projects miss their deadlines!
Some people just don’t get it!
Time tracking is viewed cautiously by many people. ‘Time and motion study’ is an expression used by management consultants and eyed suspiciously by workforces. The source of the problem is that such studies were used to identify inefficiency.
The issue was particularly bad in the times when class struggle, organized labor and a workers’ revolution were central to the goals of socialism. Sometimes it was processes. And sometimes it was individuals, with inevitable consequences of some sort for workers or teams. This would often provoke a reaction leading to breakdowns in labor relations.
Today, (thankfully!) time tracking projects have little to do with the class struggle between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat and is more about making good business sense.
To make sure we understand where our businesses are making and losing money we simply need to know how much time people are spending on tasks assigned to them. Quite simply, if things are taking too long, then we need adjust budgets so that we can run our companies in a consistently profitable way so that we continue to flourish.
Apps for time tracking
Just in the way that companies are managing projects with apps, they use software to track time spent on tasks. Many project management apps have time tracking functionality built in.
However, there are a lot of specialized time trackers which do it very well. These may also add more functionality, beyond the scope of project management and software dedicated to PM. Here’s a quick look at the top 5 time tracking apps.
Toggl is an online tracking tool that integrates with Breeze. It’s popular with freelancers, consultants, and small companies. Toggl lets users track the time spent on projects and analyze how productive they are. In companies, it works well for both big and small teams.
Toggl offers very simple and flexible time tracking and it supports users across multiple devices. You get great looking reports and time usage graphs show you what you need to see.
You can export time logs as Excel spreadsheets, get weekly reports via email or share public report links with clients. Toggl works in the browser, on desktops or laptops with programs for Windows, Mac, Linux, and it is native iOS and Android with apps.Pros
- Track time by the client and by project and see many different reports
- Jump from project to project, take breaks, and pick back up where you left off
- Lack of an auto-generate report feature
- Sometimes bugs happen, but nothing serious
What people say:
Wrapping it up, it's fair to say that Toggl is one the better (if not the best) time tracking software on the market. Lewis, Freelance Effect.
Harvest also integrates with Breeze and lets you and your team track time and send invoices from one integrated application. Harvest is ideal for freelancers who need to track time and invoice clients. It also works well for client services businesses that want time tracking for multiple projects and clients.
It’s easy to track time from your desktop, phone, and your favorite project management tool, whether that’s Breeze, Asana, Trello, or Basecamp. It then collates time tracking data into visually intuitive, timesheet reports.
It’s really easy to see where your team’s time is being spent. This makes it simple to catch projects before they go over budget. It lets you make more intelligent decisions about how to run your business. When you need to invoice clients, just create invoices from your billable time and email them to the clients.Pros
- Allows visibility into each project and provides transparency to your customers
- Support calls back and you get a real person who really tries to fix your issue
- It’s a tool of habit, use it regularly or the value is greatly reduced
- A bit pricey if you just want time tracking and do not use the full-stack features
What people say:
We are heavy users of the invoice generation and team allocation features. Great usability and very straighforward. Helps us organize and execute faster. Lino, Software advice.
Hubstaff provides time tracking that gives proof of work, activity tracking, application monitoring and detailed reporting. Businesses such as agencies, development firms, e-commerce sites, legal practices, construction companies, and startups like using it.
The software enables companies to eliminate inefficiency and work better by streamlining time tracking. You can see work happen in real time and choose between desktop, web, and mobile apps. Through a single dashboard you can also manage invoicing, reporting and more.
Hubstaff integrates with over 30 apps, including Breeze (but of course!), Basecamp, Trello, Asana, GitHub, and PayPal. Available for Mac, Windows, Linux, and iOS.Pros
- Reminds users to track with the desktop app and categorizes by projects and tasks
- Exporting reports with just the right amount of detail required for clients is super easy
- The administrator view is the same as the user view
- Not easy to track multiple projects for different organizations
What people say:
Hubstaff is an easy-to-administer, feature-rich, time tracking tool. If you're diligent about monitoring employee behavior while on the clock, then there's no better software available than Hubstaff. Juan Martinez, PCMAG
TimeCamp is automatic time tracking software for teams and individuals. The software is widely chosen due to its simplicity. It is being used by professional services companies working with B2B clients and customers, that need to track time and measure project's profitability.
TimeCamp not only a tracks time. It’s also an accurate attendance tracker! Thanks to the accurate measurement of work hours (up-to-the-second), it is easy to find out how many hours per day your employees work = what is the exact time of their attendance.
You can track time for multiple projects simultaneously and accurately bill multiple customers. TimeCamp makes it easy to track time on every device as it is available as a desktop and mobile app for multiple platforms and devices. For busy freelancers, TimeCamp offers a free SOLO plan for the single user. (BTW, you might also like to know, it integrates with Breeze….)Pros
- Clear instructions to let you get everything set up the way that you want
- Use it for business and personal tasks and properly organize each day
- Mobile version has bugs and isn't very good
- The calendar could be a bit easier to use
What people say:
Excellent option for individuals and small and medium-sized businesses looking for a simple time tracking system. ValuePenguin
Timeneye is an integrated time tracking solution. As you can probably guess by now, it too integrates with Breeze! It gives users an easy to use interface and powerful reports. It offers a full range of time tracking capabilities and the software finds favor with both company project managers and freelancers.
Timeneye is a simple and intelligent time-tracking tool, which is helping small - medium companies to track the productivity levels of their teams. This can help boost productivity for company teams and freelancers quickly. For individual freelancers it offers free single user plan with unlimited projects and clients.Pros
- Interface is clean and simple, and the Google Chrome extension is a great add-on
- Customer service team are very thorough and helpful when providing support
- Android mobile app not perfect
- Lack of native Mac app
What people say:
What I most like of Timeneye is its ease of use. This software do what I really need: track billable hours and generate great reports about the time spent by client and by project. The interface is clean and simple and the Google Chrome extension is a great add-on. Also, you can configure how you would like to view your dashboard. Fabiana D.,Capterra reviewer
Use the top 5 time tracking apps with Breeze
With Breeze we don’t restrict how you track time. You can choose the time tracking app that works best for you. Breeze integrates with all of the top 5 time tracking tools to give you all the freedom you need to make sure you get the tools that work best for you.
Use one you already like or if you don’t have one yet, just use the time tracking built into Breeze. If you find one of the top 5 you really like that does other things for you too, well that’s just fine, you just plug it into Breeze.