Below you’ll find an overview of each of the 10 best time tracking software, with screenshots, feature overviews, and pricing.
Time tracking software doesn’t have to be painful! As a project manager on a variety of agency teams, I’ve used my fair share of time tracking software—both for simply tracking time and also for tracking budgets and estimating future projects. Each team is different, so I’ve chosen a handful of the top time management tools that I recommend, along with summaries of their features, pricing, and main pros and cons to help you choose the right time tracker for your projects.
As project managers trying to manage project budgets and getting our teams to track their time accurately, we use time-tracking tools for many different purposes aside from simply filling in timesheets.
Time management tools can be expensive, so I’ve hunted down a good number of the best free, or nearly free time tracking software. Most importantly, though, we’re looking for the best in class tools that are so easy to use, people actually want to submit their timesheets. Just imagine that!
Time Tracking Software Comparison Criteria
- User Interface: The software needs to look pretty and be really easy to use. Your team is way less likely to adopt a tool that looks like it crawled out of the early days of the internet.
- Usability: Time tracking is one of the most basic things that your team will need to do; the user interface should keep to that spirit, making the process seamless for tracking tasks and projects.
- Integrations: Can it connect to other third party tools? Particularly useful is the ability to integrate with accounting software like Quickbooks or Xero.
- Value for Price: Time tracking is undoubtedly one of many, many tools you will need to get through your day to day. I’ve provided options that are priced accordingly to fit into your existing tech stack.
Time Tracking Software Key Features
Different time tracking software will vary with the breadth and depth of features included but here are a few key functions to consider when picking which one to buy into:
- Time tracking easily within projects and tasks – It needs to link to a source of truth of clients, projects and tasks.
- Estimates and tracking – It should easily create a project estimate or quote, and then be able to track estimates vs actuals with visual reporting and analytics.
- Direct to invoicing – It has to be easy to then turn project reports and actuals into estimates to send to clients.
Quickly Compare The Best Time Tracking Software
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Resource Management by Smartsheet, a high-level project and resource management software, helps modern teams make confident decisions about project planning, team capacity, budget forecasting, team utilization, and hiring needs in real time.
Its built-in timesheets, mobile time tracking, and expense tracking features, enable you to create rich project reports by filtering project data with just a few clicks, making it the best time tracking solution for a workforce with diverse operational setups. Get a detailed report that can give insight into historical data or offer a forecasted view of team utilization, actual vs. planned time reports, budget tracking, expense reports, and projects in the pipeline.
Over 1,000 of the most innovative companies in the world rely on Resource Management by Smartsheet, from 10-person shops and 100-person teams within global brands to 1,000+ person professional services firms. Resource Management by Smartsheet has been recognized for its design excellence with awards from FastCo, SXSW, IxDA + IDSA.
Resource Management by Smartsheet easily integrates with a variety of internal workflows and software suites. Additionally, it provides a flexible API and Zapier integration that can connect with top operational tools for analytics, communications, PM, ERP, and finance.
With a unique project and resource matching feature, Resource Management by Smartsheet helps match team members to the project’s requirements according to different criteria like disciplines, skills, availability, and more.
Pricing starts at $25/month.
monday.com is a project management software with time tracking features that has done away with a lot of the trimmings of typical management tools and focused on simple, visually intuitive layouts that help clarify the sequence of work.
monday.com features for managing projects include resource and project management, time tracking software, collaboration, and reporting features. For example, users can upload and attach files to cards, make comments, mention teammates, and more. It also offers a great project reporting dashboard that can collect data from multiple boards, allowing better tracking abilities of progress.
And while monday.com doesn’t offer a complete set of tools for project accounting and invoicing solution as other tools, you can use monday.com to track every billable hour, employee productivity, and invoices. More than being a time tracking solution, you can also use it for your employee productivity needs. Easily assign owners to new tasks, prioritize each item, set due dates and know exactly how every work hour is spent on each project and task. You can also keep track of time on their mobile app.
monday.com’s integrations include business apps like Slack, Google Drive, Gmail, Google Calendar, Jira, GitHub, Trello, Dropbox, Typeform, and many more, accessible via Zapier.
monday.com costs from $6/user/month and comes with a free 14-day trial. They offer a free plan for up to 2 users.
GoodDay is a modern, highly customizable work management platform that includes powerful yet user-friendly tools for project planning, task management, resource and portfolio management, time and budget tracking, progress tracking and analytics, as well as customizable workflows, templates, integrations, and more.
GoodDay includes a dedicated time tracking module with a built-in task timer and integrated time reporting options. Users can create time-related reports for projects, teams, or users, as well as customize report columns, compare actual time spent to estimated, see financial insights by connecting time reports with resource/service hourly rates, and more.
The tool includes advanced project planning functionality for creating detailed project plans. Users can add tasks, milestones, and dependencies, as well as get a full picture of progress against the plan. Resource management capabilities include managing resource utilization and workload balance.
GoodDay has 100s of integrations with apps like Google Drive, Google Calendar, Gmail, Slack, GitHub, GitLab, Excel, Jira, Trello, and many others, accessible via native integration or Zapier. Custom integrations can be built through GoodDay’s API.
GoodDay costs from $4/user/month and offers a free-forever version for up to 15 users.
Buddy Punch is a web-based time clock software. Its interface is fully customizable. You will be able to integrate the Buddy Punch with most of the payroll management products. It will help you with managing the projects by recording the time for a specific project and job codes.
Buddy Punch has a functionality of automatically splitting of calculated time into categories like regular time, overtime, and double time. The tool can also provide the flexible, reliable, and easy-to-use employee management, Buddy Punch will let you set up a unique overtime rule on a per-employee basis. Additional features include automatic breaks, vacation tracking, GPS tracking, and other time and attendance solutions.
Buddy Punch integrates with QuickBooks, ADP, Gusto, Paychex, Paylocity, PayPlus, SurePayroll, and Workday. A paid Zapier account can get you access to hundreds of other tool connections.
Buddy Punch costs from $25.99/month for basic time and attendance solutions (billed annually). They offer a 30-day free trial. You can contact the company directly for the requirement of more than 200 employees.
Timesheets.com is a fully-featured time tracking software tool, complete with hourly time clock, project time, mileage and expense tracking, time off / vacation, and stacks of powerful HR functionality to support managing your team. Timesheets.com is easy to use and they offer the option to brand the service with your logo.
Timesheets.com integrates fully with projects and tasks and they offer flexible entry options with tracking projects in real-time using timers feature, single project entries daily, or fill in their timesheet at the end of the week. Budgets are easily managed and reporting is simple with the ability to use live, up to the minute data to drill down to separate out specific employees, projects, and dates.
Timesheets.com has some pretty powerful HR tools if you’re looking for a more complete HR time tracking software solution that does more than just track time and expenses. The HR functionality includes powerful time off management with the ability to review accrued balances for vacation, and request approval for vacation time to manage and review the agency’s time off in a single view on a calendar. The HR functionality also includes a suite of standardized employee documentation including employee training manuals, performance reviews, staff communication, employee files, and notes.
Timesheets.com has a QuickBooks integration and the data can easily be exported for other accounting software.
Timesheets has a 15-day free trial for all users. Once activated, pricing starts at $4.50/user/month and $3.60/user/month for nonprofit organizations.
If you’re looking for a simple and free time tracking software, Toggl is a great place to start. It’s beautifully designed and incredibly easy to use. If you’re looking for a solution to get started today and to simply track time against different projects and clients, then Toggl is great.
Toggl allows you to create projects, tasks and track hours using your browser, Chrome extension, mobile, or desktop apps. While it allows tracking of accruals, there’s no way to set budgets and track against them. If you want to track against an estimate or create an invoice, you’d need to use a 3rd party tool.
Toggl has some good functionality to support helping people do their time tracking properly with automated reminders to keep people on track, and you can create required fields for time entries, to ensure people always add comments or tags to their timesheet entries. You can also enable auditing tools where you can trigger alerts for suspicious-looking timesheet entries, like if someone claims to have worked 10 hrs straight on a single task!
Toggl has some good out the box, which make it one of the best free time tracking software options available with integrations for Jira, Asana, Basecamp, Freshbooks, GitHub, and Teamweek among many others. So even though it’s lacking in some of the budget tracking and invoicing functionalities, you can easily tie it in with other tools that specialize in reporting and invoicing.
Toggl is a free time tracking software tool although paid versions cost from $9/user/month.
Bill4time is the full package – a full-featured time tracking software tool with time tracking, expense tracking, billing & invoicing, invoice templates, and online payments supported by a client portal, it’s more than just time tracking but billing software too.
Bill4time has created some well-designed and good looking tools with mobile and desktop apps to enable some pretty flexible and powerful time tracking; you can simultaneously run timers, record multiple time entries in one screen and automatically convert appointments into time entries. All of this makes time tracking easy.
What’s really unique about Bill4time is really the powerful back-end management functionality that allows you to keep better track of users, projects, clients, and accounting. Using the rich data and dashboards you can easily track financial performance, identify trends, review payment history, productivity, and more so you can more easily optimize performance. Reporting is powerful and flexible so you can be sure to stay on top of the productivity and financial status of your clients and projects.
Bill4time doesn’t have a large back-catalog of integrations but they do have the essentials; Quickbooks, PayPal, and Stripe, so if you’re using those systems, you’re in luck.
Bill4time offers a free 14-day trial and costs from $29/user/month.
TimeCamp is a great free time tracking software tool (with freemium upgrades) that includes manual and automatic timesheets, a time diary, and automatic task detection capabilities. It’s well designed and easy to use with a clean and fresh design.
TimeCamp is based around projects and tasks, and you can set budgets for either so that you can easily track accumulated hours against projects and tasks. Vacation tracking and accrual tracking are supported with attendance and absence analysis so you can track who is in and who is out at any given time, see when they start and finish work and track their holidays.
Timecamp integrates well with invoicing and is able to automatically (or not) produce invoices based on billable hours with worked generated in TimeCamp. There is an integrated payment gateway and helpfully you can get a notification when a client views an invoice.
A great feature within TimeCamp is their pretty unique time management tools which give some great insights on what are people are actually doing; the most time-consuming websites and applications they’re using, with productivity analysis and detailed history on how people spend their time by using automatic computer usage tracking – this also enables you to evaluate time spent on documents, even tracking offline activity and the ability to approve or reject timesheets.
TimeCamp has got stacks of powerful integrations which make it a very flexible time tracking software tool. Integrations include project management favorites including, Jira, Wrike, Trello, Podio, Basecamp, and Asana – invoicing including Xero, Quickbooks, and Free Agent, as well as Insightly, Wunderlist, and Zapier.
TimeCamp is free time tracking software although paid versions cost from $6/user/month.
Harvest is a very popular agency time tracking software tool used by thousands of agencies as their time tracking software solution. Its functionality covers everything from timesheets, invoicing, expenses, project budgeting, budget tracking, and reporting.
Harvest is popular because it’s easy to use and it’s been very well designed with a beautiful and intuitive interface that works across desktop and mobile. Harvest covers time tracking with clients, projects, and task tracking which power some powerful reporting so you can easily analyze your data including billable and non-billable time for specific staff, tasks, clients, and projects.
Helpfully, for complete budget tracking solution, Harvest supports expense tracking, invoicing, and timesheet approval; it’s a fully baked product covering the essential time tracking software tool functionality and stacks more. Harvest also has a sister product, Harvest Forecast, which has resourcing management features so you can schedule a team on projects, know who’s working on what and when and then easily compare estimates vs actuals and know exactly when a project hit its budget.
Harvest really excels at its integrations, offering more than 70+ integrations across project management with Jira, Asana, and Basecamp, accounting with Quickbooks, Xero, and Stripe as well as many others across issue tracking, CRM, productivity, communication, contracts and proposals, developer tools, and analytics and reporting. If you’re using industry-standard tools, you’re very likely to be able to plug in the Harvest add-ons to track time across your project workflow.
Harvest offers a 30-day trial and is a free time tracking software tool, although paid versions cost from $12/user/month.
Need expert help selecting the right Time Management Software?
We’ve joined up with the software comparison platform Crozdesk.com to assist you in finding the right software. Crozdesk’s Time Management Software advisors can create a personalized shortlist of software solutions with unbiased recommendations to help you identify the solutions that best suit your business’s needs. Through our partnership you get free access to their bespoke software selection advice, removing both time and hassle from the research process.
It only takes a minute to submit your requirements and they will give you a quick call at no cost or commitment. Based on your needs you’ll receive customized software shortlists listing the best-fitting solutions from their team of software advisors (via phone or email). They can even connect you with your selected vendor choices along with community negotiated discounts. To get started, please complete the form below:
30 days free trial
|From $25/user/month||Check out Resource Management by Smartsheet|
14 days free trial
|From $6/user/month||Check out monday.com|
|From $4/user/month||Check out GoodDay|
30 days free trial
|From $25.99/month for 1-4 employees||Check out Buddy Punch|
15 days free trial
|From $4.50/user/month and $3.60/user/month for nonprofit organizations||Check out Timesheets|
|From $9/user/month||Check out Toggl|
14 day free trial. No credit card needed
|From $29/user/month||Check out Bill4time|
|From $6/user/month||Check out Timecamp|
30 days free trial
|From $12/user/month||Check out Harvest|
Other time tracking software tools worth considering:
None of the above work for you? Check out the list below for 15 additional time tracking software tools:
- Streamtime: Best time tracking for agencies
- Staff Timer: Best time tracking for enterprise
- Clockify: Best customizable time tracking
- MinuteDock: Best for professional services firm
- Zoomshift: Best for combined employee scheduling & time tracking
- Justworks Hours: Best for usability and user experience
- Time Doctor: Best for teams working remotely or hybrid
- BigTime: Best for timesheet reporting and analytics
- FunctionPoint: Best for internal marketing departments
- Freshbooks: Best for billing and invoicing
- SpringAhead: Best for integration with QuickBooks
- Replicon: Best for flexible time tracking
- Intervals: Best for combined task management & time tracking
- Journyx: Best for mid-size to large organizations
- BillQuick: Best for onboarding and set-up
- Hub Planner: Best for managing and scheduling remote teams
- Elorus: Best for customizable invoices
- TimeLog: Best for combined professional services automation & time tracking
Time tracking software – why is it important?
Time tracking software and expense tracking software is no one’s idea of a party, but it’s a necessary evil in the digital agency world, for professional services and consulting when you’re charging time and materials or billing by the hour and you need to track budget burn. Likewise, invoicing is not fun, but it’s necessary and requires accurate timesheet detail to function.
Fundamentally, there’s budget and financial tracking information that’s needed to keep a business alive; we need to know the project budget essentials:
- Are we above / below the project budget?
- Are we tracking to hit the budget?
- How much should be invoiced to the client?
- How profitable is the project / job / client?
Accurate timesheet reporting is also important to us as project managers so we can give proper analogous estimates based on past project performance. In order to estimate properly, we need to be able to look back at timesheet data, in the time tracking software and gauge how much should be charged for the next project. We need reliable, accurate time reporting data and people to use time tracking software properly.
Unless you’ve got no interest in the effort it takes to deliver your project, and the profitability of your projects then there’s no avoiding the pain of timesheets, time tracking software and hours reporting.
The problem is, if the time tracking software you’re using is more than a bit fugly and a pain to use, then no one wants to use it, and the data you get from it can be almost useless.
As a given, the best time tracking software needs to be able to handle large teams, lots of clients and many projects simultaneously. But beyond a product that works well at capturing time, we need to think about what happens with that time-tracked information; how does it start as an estimate, how is it tracked, and once tracked, how is it then invoiced?
In choosing the best time tracking tool, it’s worth thinking through your agency or studio workflow, and think about the end to end experience – from the person creating the estimate to the person doing the work, to the person invoicing it; how does it all fit together?
What Do You Think?
What do you think we’re missing? What other time tracking software tools or timesheets software have you found that we don’t know about? We’d love to hear if you’ve got any suggestions, tips or thoughts on using this kind of software – why not share them using the comments below?