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Last modified date

Jul 19, 2024

25 Best Time Tracking Software for Your Small Business

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Laurențiu Bancu

Blog average read time

47 min

Last modified date

July 19, 2024


If you’re here, you’re probably looking to find the best time-tracking software you can use yourself or with your team, depending on your situation. But even picking a few to try out can be confusing and daunting with more than 100 apps available.

Let’s kick things off with a bit of my backstory:

I’ve been deep in the time-tracking game within the small business scene for over a decade and a half, keeping meticulous tabs all the while. I tracked so many hours that my time logs could serve as a diary.

My job has led me through a labyrinth of time-tracking apps so vast that it’s a blur trying to recall every name. Along the way, I’ve seen many time-tracking apps bite the dust, a few hold their ground, and a select bunch continually up their game.

Heads up from the get-go: the quest for the ultimate time-tracking tool is a myth. Each dances to its beat, flaunting its quirks, strengths, and weaknesses. In this article, I aim to peel back the layers and highlight which tool best fits each specific need.

List of the 10 best time-tracking software

So, I’ve got my fair share of expertise and experience when it comes to time-tracking software. To help narrow down the choices, I’ve carefully selected the top 10 time tracking software available on the market and the main benefit of each one:

  1. Paymo – best time-tracking with invoicing for teams of up to 20 people
  2. Toggl Track – best for freelancers seeking a simple & straightforward tool
  3. Clockify – best for businesses that need time-tracking with GPS features
  4. Time Doctor – best for employers who want to record employee’s screens
  5. Timely – best for work involving a high degree of context-shifting
  6. Harvest – best if you’re using a project management tool without time-tracking
  7. RescueTime – tool with the most advanced automated time-tracking features
  8. Everhour – best for advanced reporting and integration with pm software
  9. TimeCamp – best for people new to time tracking and seeking a cost-free option
  10. Timeular – best for individuals who want a physical time-tracking device

Best time tracking software rundown

I’ll try to summarize how each of the 25 time tracking software fares best.

Besides Paymo Track, its native automatic time tracker, and multiple ways to track time for employees, Paymo offers robust project management features and invoicing capabilities for teams up to 20 people.  Toggl Track is a simple and straightforward tool ideal for freelancers and smaller teams, as well.

Clockify provides time tracking with GPS features for businesses. Similarly, TimeDoctor records employee screens for employers.

Timely is best for work involving high context-shifting owing to its automation features. Also good for context switching is Timeular, which provides a physical time tracking device for individuals.

Harvest integrates with other project management tools like Teamwork, ClickUp, and Asana. In the same vein, Everhour offers advanced reporting and integrations with project management software.

RescueTime bets on its automated time tracking features meant to boost employee productivity.

TimeCamp is a cost-free option for people new to time tracking.

Tools like Tick and Hours Time Lord prioritize simplicity with their one-click time entry interfaces, others such as Hubstaff and Deputy offer more advanced employee monitoring and scheduling capabilities for businesses managing hourly workers.

Project-focused teams may prefer tools that integrate time tracking with project management features, like TrackingTime and ClickUp, while those looking for AI-powered automation may be drawn to Insightful.io‘s productivity analysis or HourStack‘s visual timeline view.

Specialized industries have dedicated tools, such as Beebole for professional services firms and Homebase for shift-based businesses. Enterprise-level companies may require the advanced reporting and integrations provided by Replicon.

Some tools like Timeneye and MyHours aim for a clean, user-friendly design, while Jibble and BuddyPunch include location tracking for remote workers.

I’d say that the choice ultimately depends on the specific needs of the individual or team, whether it’s simplicity, advanced features, industry fit, or ease of use.

Let’s continue with an in-depth review of each tool, starting with Paymo.

Review of the 25 best time tracking software

1. Paymo

best time-tracking with invoicing for teams of up to 20 people

Pricing: Average

90

of 100

Pros
pros-image

most advanced time-tracking features

pros-image

various modes of time tracking, from automatic to Pomodoro

pros-image

easy adoption and onboarding

pros-image

great customer service

Cons
cons-image

the only export formats are .csv and .pdf, PM data via API

cons-image

fewer integration options with other software

cons-image

limited communication features

Create a free Paymo account and start tracking time right away.

2. Toggl Track

best for freelancers seeking a simple & straightforward tool

Pricing: High

89

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Well-suited for freelancers

pros-image

A key feature of simplicity

pros-image

Standout free version, up to 5 users

pros-image

Ideal for independent work without the need for complex features

Cons
cons-image

It can become cumbersome to manage complex projects

cons-image

Interface design has excessive dead space, limiting project visibility

cons-image

Navigation can be confusing due to the use of multiple colors

3. Clockify

best for businesses that need time-tracking with GPS features

Pricing: Average

88

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Suitable for location-based GPS time tracking

pros-image

User-friendly interface, praised by users

pros-image

The quick learning curve for essential functions

pros-image

Automated time-tracking features

Cons
cons-image

Free functionalities are severely limited to encourage paid plan upgrades

cons-image

Complicated and prolonged cancellation procedure

cons-image

Occasional glitches and downtime reported

4. TimeDoctor

best for employers who want to record employee's screens

Pricing: Average

87

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Suitable for intensive oversight of employee performance.

pros-image

Screen capture functionality every 3 minutes

pros-image

Video screen capture feature

Cons
cons-image

Potential negative backlash from employees due to intensive monitoring.

cons-image

Screen captures can be manipulated by tech-savvy employees.

cons-image

Issues with the transition to TimeDoctor 2

cons-image

Limited functionality in the mobile application.

cons-image

Customer support is not up to par with competitors.

5. Timely

best for work involving a high degree of context-shifting

Pricing: High

86

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Useful for high context-shifting work

pros-image

Uses AI to help ease the time-tracking process

pros-image

Adheres to a strict anti-surveillance policy

pros-image

Exemplary customer support

Cons
cons-image

AI requires training; a two-week trial might not be enough

cons-image

No free version, even with limitations

cons-image

Technical limitations in tracking

cons-image

Occasionally, the Memory app fails to sync

6. Harvest

best if you’re using a project management tool without time-tracking

Pricing: Average

84

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Ideal for incorporating time tracking into pm tools like Asana, Basecamp, or Trello

pros-image

User-friendly and straightforward interface

pros-image

Good support team

pros-image

Offers invoicing features

pros-image

Robust time tracking capabilities

Cons
cons-image

Lacks many advanced project management features

cons-image

Not suitable as a standalone project management tool

cons-image

Focused almost exclusively on time tracking

cons-image

Outdated design

7. RescueTime

tool for time tracking, goal-setting, and website blocking

Pricing: High

83

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Among the most advanced automatic time-tracking features

pros-image

Innovative use of Timesheets AI

pros-image

Helpful for self-critique

pros-image

FocusTime module to reduce distractions

Cons
cons-image

The timesheets AI feature is still in beta

cons-image

Interface appears outdated

cons-image

Lack of roadmap & significant product updates

cons-image

Pricing is not easily accessible before trying

8. TimeCamp

best for people new to time tracking and seeking a cost-free option

Pricing: Low

82

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Good for beginners

pros-image

User-friendly

pros-image

One of the cheapest in the market

pros-image

Automated time tracking feature

Cons
cons-image

No automated time tracking in free and basic packages.

cons-image

Occasional bugs

cons-image

Desktop version shortcomings

9. Everhour

reporting and plenty of integrations in a time tracker

Pricing: High

82

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Advanced reporting system

pros-image

Good integration with popular project management software

pros-image

Reliable support team

Cons
cons-image

Limited project management functionality

cons-image

Reporting lacks visual capabilities like charts and graphs

cons-image

It has a steep learning curve

cons-image

Customization options are limited

cons-image

Expensive, minimum of five users for the tier with all integrations

10. Timeular

best for individuals who want a physical time-tracking device

Pricing: Average

81

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Works with a physical time-tracking device

pros-image

More Intuitive & user friendly

pros-image

Exemplary customer support team

Cons
cons-image

Higher price due to the inclusion of the physical device

cons-image

Extra issues you have to deal with, connectivity, mapping sides

cons-image

Limited number of faces to map activities

Comparison chart

These are the top 10 time-tracking tools and the particular scenarios in which they excel.

Top 10 Best Time Tracking Software for 2024
paymo-favicon
toggl-favicon
clockify-favicon
time-doctor-favicon
timely-favicon
harvest-favicon
rescue-time-favicon
everhour-favicon
time-camp-favicon
timeular-favicon
Software
Price/User

$5.9/mo

$9/mo

$3.99/mo

$5.9/mo

$9/mo*

$10.80/mo

$6.50/mo

$8.50/mo*

$2.99/mo

$6.30/mo

Ideal Company Size

teams of up to 20 people

small teams

large teams

enterprise

mid & large teams

SMBs

enterprise

mid-sized teams

enterprise

solopreneurs

User Rating

4.7 ⭐️

4.6 ⭐️

4.6 ⭐️

4.4 ⭐️

4.7 ⭐️

4.4 ⭐️

4.3 ⭐️

4.7 ⭐️

4.7 ⭐️

4.6 ⭐️

Automatic Time Tracking
yes
no
no
no
yes
no
yes
no
yes
yes
Stellar Feature

Invoicing

Reporting

Time Clock Kiosk

Attendance

Memory Tracker

Timesheet Approval

Focus Time

Screenshots

Time Budgets

Physical device


Like I mentioned earlier, I’ve expanded the list by adding 15 additional time-tracking software. Although many resemble the initial ten in functionality and features, should those not fully meet your requirements, the subsequent options might align more closely with your needs.

11. Tick

an attractive choice for freelancers focused on a single project

Pricing: Low

81

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Perfect for freelancers working on a single project

pros-image

Pricing per project and not per user like most competitors

pros-image

Suitable for big teams working on a few projects

pros-image

More Intuitive & user friendly than most competitors

pros-image

Good customer support team

Cons
cons-image

Becomes very expensive if you work on many small projects

cons-image

Occasional issues with tracking, loading speed & errors

cons-image

Users find the UI outdated, and in need of a more modern style

12. Hubstaff

detailed employee monitoring with screenshots and URL tracking

Pricing: High

80

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Takes frequent screenshots for monitoring employee activity

pros-image

Monitors URLs, mouse, and keyboard activity

Cons
cons-image

Significant privacy concerns

cons-image

Some bugs and crashes while tracking time

cons-image

It does not work well for tracking activities without keyboard and mouse input.

13. Deputy

an employee scheduling tool emphasizing labor compliance features

Pricing: Low

79

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Good for employee scheduling

pros-image

Labor compliance features

pros-image

Adherence to fair workweek laws

pros-image

Integrates well with payroll, POS, and HR systems

Cons
cons-image

The color scheme can be challenging to work with

cons-image

Lacks advanced task management features

cons-image

Full utilization of its SMS features can be expensive

14. TrackingTime

time-tracker for recurrent tasks and events

Pricing: Average

79

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Automatic reminders for incomplete timesheets

pros-image

Daily checks comparing scheduled vs. actual hours worked

pros-image

Good app integrations to start the timer (e.g., in Asana or Gmail)

Cons
cons-image

It could use more integrations

cons-image

Reports could be improved for clarity and utility

cons-image

Pricing is on the higher side

cons-image

Very limited free version

15. homebase

employee time tracking and scheduling for service industries

Pricing: Low

78

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Employee scheduling for budget-conscious small businesses

pros-image

Streamlines the creation of staff schedules

pros-image

Includes effective communication tools

pros-image

Includes effective coordination features

Cons
cons-image

The distribution of features across different pricing tiers

cons-image

Aggressive promotion of the “cash out” program, particularly to new employees

cons-image

Price hikes without corresponding additions of new features

16. Insightful.io

a time tracking and performance analysis tool tailored for enterprise use

Pricing: High

78

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Tailored for large enterprises

pros-image

Insights to improve work patterns and productivity

pros-image

Includes productivity scoring & unproductive time identification

pros-image

Works in stealth mode

Cons
cons-image

The stealth mode feature raises significant privacy issues

cons-image

It tends to mark idle time inaccurately

cons-image

No video recording for employee screens

cons-image

Issues when managing multiple time zones

17. ClickUp

customizable time tracking app for flexible teams

Pricing: Average

77

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Feature-rich with regular additions

pros-image

Highly adaptable with versatile applications for atypical scenarios

pros-image

Responsive support team

Cons
cons-image

It can be overwhelming due to its many features, posing a steep learning curve.

cons-image

Occasionally sluggish performance with occasional server downtimes.

cons-image

Pricing can be deceptive; initial costs seem affordable, but expenses can accumulate swiftly.

18. HourStack

a scheduling tool with time-tracking

Pricing: High

76

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Calendar and time entries look good

pros-image

Good task management features, including importing

pros-image

Good integrations

Cons
cons-image

Expensive personal package

cons-image

Very high price for bigger teams

cons-image

Limited feature set

19. MyHours

a user-friendly time-tracking tool with a simple interface

Pricing: Average

76

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Simple and clean user interface

pros-image

Good free package

pros-image

Affordable paid packages

Cons
cons-image

It could use more integrations

cons-image

Could use more invoicing features

cons-image

Reporting could be better

20. Replicon

time-tracking tool with a focus on payroll, compliance, and employee monitoring

Pricing: High

75

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Automatically captures work and time data across various apps.

pros-image

AI-driven pre-filling of timesheets for more accessible review and submission.

pros-image

Exceptional customer support team

Cons
cons-image

AI-powered features are still in the early testing stages, requiring further assessment.

cons-image

User interface is described as clunky and not intuitive in many user reviews.

cons-image

Interface inefficiencies can cause user frustration, especially for frequent tasks.

cons-image

It necessitates investing time in training to utilize the platform’s capabilities fully.

21. Beebole

customizable project time tracking software that helps teams thrive

Pricing: Average

75

of 100

Pros
pros-image

flexible scheduling and overtime balance

pros-image

Simple, clean, and user-friendly

pros-image

Exemplary customer support

Cons
cons-image

Limited feature set, still in constant development

cons-image

The interface might not be in the best shape yet, but they are working on it

cons-image

Reporting is basic and could be improved

22. BuddyPunch

time-tracking tool with monitoring features for enterprise

Pricing: Low

74

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Easy to clock in

pros-image

Simple to use

pros-image

Employees have complete control over their time card

pros-image

You can add a note explaining why you’re clocking in at a different time

Cons
cons-image

Functionality over aesthetics – the design is simple

cons-image

Separate logins for roles

cons-image

Correcting or adding manual time punches can be complex for some users

23. Timeneye

time-tracking tool for Microsoft Office Suite users

Pricing: Average

73

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Useful for consultants that use Microsoft Office Suite

pros-image

Includes invoicing features

Cons
cons-image

It has a limited feature set

cons-image

Reporting is essential and could be improved

cons-image

High price when compared to competitors and actual feature set

24. Hours Time Lord

mobile time-tracking app for freelancers

Pricing: Average

73

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Straightforward & simple mobile app

pros-image

Works on iPhones & Android

Cons
cons-image

Limited feature set

cons-image

High price when compared to competitors

cons-image

Limited online presence

25. Jibble

time-tracker with clock in and out feature

Pricing: Average

72

of 100

Pros
pros-image

Easy to clock in

pros-image

User friendly

pros-image

Good free package for unlimited users

pros-image

Affordable pricing tiers

Cons
cons-image

Lacks advanced customization options

cons-image

Chrome extension could be better

What is the difference between time-tracking software and timesheet software?

Timesheet software and time-tracking software are related, but they serve slightly different purposes.

  1. Timesheets:
    • A timesheet is a document or software tool used to record the number of hours an employee has worked during a specific period, usually a week or a month.
    • Timesheets typically include fields for entering the date, start and end times of work, breaks taken, and any relevant project or task codes.
    • They are often used for payroll purposes, helping employers accurately compensate employees based on the hours worked.
  2. Time Tracking:
    • Time tracking is the process of monitoring and recording the amount of time spent on various activities or tasks throughout the workday.
    • Unlike timesheets, which focus primarily on hours worked for payroll, time tracking can encompass broader aspects of work, including tracking time spent on specific projects, tasks, or even non-work-related activities.
    • Time tracking can be done manually using timesheets, but it can also be automated through software tools that track time spent on different tasks or projects in real time.
    • Time tracking is valuable for assessing productivity, managing projects effectively, and identifying areas for better time utilization.

In summary, timesheets are a specific form of time tracking focused on recording hours worked for payroll purposes. In contrast, time tracking encompasses a broader scope of monitoring and managing time spent on various activities or projects.

Why do I need time-tracking software?

You’ve probably asked yourself what hour tracking is, “Why would I need it?”—and if you’ve established you need it, “How do I track my work hours?”

Time tracking software is a type of computer software or mobile application that allows a user to register time spent on tasks or work in general. It is used in various industries, especially by those who employ freelancers, contractors, and hourly workers. It is a must for those who bill their customers by the hour.

Why is time tracking important?

If you’re not yet convinced about the utility of time tracking, look at the following benefits:

  • Identify non-essential tasks: Time tracking can help you replace unimportant tasks with productive ones since you don’t have time to waste. Tracking your time is insightful: an automatic time tracker maps out everything you’re working on your device, so review your activities to identify time wastes.
  • Improve time estimates: Use previously tracked time entries as the primary indicator for future projects to make better estimates and set more accurate deadlines for similar projects. Monitoring their evolution can help determine if an employee has enough time to finish a task based on past activities.
  • Get paid fairly:  If paid by the hour, an easy-to-use time tracker will help you get the money you deserve. It eliminates guesstimates and awkward conversations with problematic clients who are unwilling to cooperate or hesitant to decide on a pay rate. You’ll have the evidence of your work securely stored online and measured second by second with all your time logs.

Key Criteria for Choosing Top Time Tracking Software

Here are key factors we considered when reviewing this project time tracking software:

  1. Core Features: The time tracker software’s main features should first influence your decision. Then, task management and online reports are indispensable; time-tracking working hours is the basis of timesheet software for invoicing and billing purposes. (Bonus: Teams can use collaboration and resource scheduling, but this feature is useless for individuals.)
  2. Cost: Consider your budget and what you want to pay for. Most time-tracking software are free—see if the paid tiers make sense to you and your needs. For teams: some top-time tracking tools charge more for additional users, so you’ll need to consider the number of active users on the app at the same time.
  3. Reviews: Surely, there’s subjectivity in reviews, but reading what existing users have to say can be insightful. Capterra and G2 are two reliable user review platforms that aim to provide objective user feedback.
  4. Extra features: Think of any other feature you might need, anything from GPS tracking and integrations to a timesheet approval system, a payroll function, or even a clean or colorful design to keep your team engaged.

Take these factors and grade them according to your needs.

First, create a spreadsheet.

Then, write down your must-have features (give 5 points for each one), nice-to-have features (2 points for each one), and bonus features (1 point for each one).

Add it up to create your rating of the best time-tracking software and make your own top to test before choosing one.

What else do you need with your time tracker?

By now, you’ve probably chosen two or three online time-tracking tools to examine. The best time-tracking software is one that meets your business requirements, delivers what you need to get work done, helps you complete your work, and is easy to use for your entire team.

However, your personal experience with the app might be the decisive factor when choosing the right time-tracking software. Therefore, with all this information at hand, you just need to start a free trial and “play” with the apps. Test them thoroughly and invite your team to do the same.

On top of time tracking, you need task management to keep track of your daily duties and time reporting features based on your work to measure performance and monitor past activity for future reference. In our opinion—and experience—task management in the form of Kanban boards software simplifies planning and execution thanks to its visual nature.

Time tracking works even better when paired with other features. What’s also great to have—and it’s becoming increasingly popular—is an invoicing feature. Read our invoicing guide for examples and processes for generating invoices based on time tracking and for what invoicing mistakes to avoid.

As a freelancer or business owner, a simple invoice generator allows you to insert your details and signature to create, send, or download an invoice in under five minutes.

Other nice-to-have functionalities, such as automatic time tracking, team resource scheduling, or accounting capabilities, help balance your time, budget, and human resources. Moreover, you’ll no longer have to switch between apps, tools, and techniques to complete your tasks.

Note: Check out our task management guide to find out more about how you can prioritize and organize your tasks using relevant tools and techniques. Also, you might want to look at these professional cloud-based tools that we included in this top list of resource management software or the best Gantt chart software in 2023 to view and do project planning—besides just tracking time.

Laurențiu Bancu

Author

Laurențiu started his marketing journey over 18 years ago and now leads a marketing team. He has extensive experience in work and project management, and content strategy. When not working, he’s probably playing board games or binge-watching mini-series.

Alexandra Martin

Editor

Drawing from a background in cognitive linguistics and armed with 10+ years of content writing experience, Alexandra Martin combines her expertise with a newfound interest in productivity and project management. In her spare time, she dabbles in all things creative.

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