There are many time tracking apps out there for all sorts of teams and needs. If you are a freelancer working for yourself, you probably need to track time to accurately bill and invoice your clients for work done.
It is essential to track time accurately so you are not over billing or under billing your clients.
We decided to go online and do some research on what we think are the best time tracking apps for freelancers. In our research we considered freelancers working from a desk setting and those also those working outside on the go.
We decided to look at different features we think will be appealing to different freelancers.
This time tracking app uses AI to track time. It records how much time you spend in various apps and tallies the time after approval. It requires you to approve the different time entries spent on different projects as it learns.
Timely takes a unique approach to time tracking in that it tells you where you spend your time instead of the other way around.
Based and built in Norway, Timely has a really clean and modern user interface.
Automatic Tracking of projects – This is a really cool concept. We are not aware of any other time tracking apps doing this. It automatically records time spent in the different work apps you use. The more you use the app, the more it learns about your work habits and gets better at recording time entries for you. You also get to approve each time entry to make them public.
It might be tempting to find the automatic tracking a little invasive, but Timely does respect everyone’s privacy. All tracked data is completely private to you.
Integration – Timely comes packed with lots of integrations for designers, software developers and mostly sedentary workers. Interestingly it has integrations with other time tracking apps such as Harvest and Toggl.
Well designed with a clean user interface and a nice experience. The AI to draft time sheets is quite revolutionary. We are not aware of anyone doing it the way they are right now.
It’s expensive. Timely is on the more expensive side with the most basic pricing starting at $5 per user when billed annually.
We also think for all that Timely does, it could reall use a Windows application for the many Windows users in the world.
Harvest is a time and expense tracking tool for teams of all sizes. It tries to take the pain out of time tracking by making it simple for all kinds of teams to track time and expenses.
One of the unique things about Harvest is its Forecast tool that lets you schedule your team’s time into the future. It helps you better plan and estimate projects and plans.
Multi-platform: Harvest comes with Google Chrome, a Mac app and mobile apps. It can run on every platform out there. So for example if you are the kind of person that does work on a Mac and on an iPhone, you will be able to track time from anywhere and anytime. The Harvest mobile apps have a lot more features than the Mac app. This is understandable as most people today carry around a smartphone.
Harvest comes with several cool features such as the ability to create invoices for clients. You can automatically capture the billable time and expenses you’ve tracked into invoices.
Harvest has an additional solution, Forecast, which allows you to forecast and schedule your team across projects.
Harvest does integrate with a lot of different software products such as project management software, communication software, analytics and reporting software.
There are a lot of great things with Harvest for time tracking. You can accurately track time, generate invoices and also do scheduling. It comes packed with a lot of features that helps freelancers easily stay organized.
The biggest drawback we see is the pricing. The $12/user/month is quite high if you are looking solely for time tracking. If you are looking to gain more out of your time tracking software, then we think the value may be worth it.
Timeero is a time and mileage tracking app built for freelancers. With Timeero, you do not need to run two separate apps to track time, location and mileage. It is built to run on every platform you can think of such as iOS, Android and desktop computers.
Timeero does come with time tracking features to help you properly manage all your time tracking needs.
GPS Tracking: With Timeero you can track the location of yourself or your employees to see where everyone is or where they’ve been. With the Who’s Working feature, you can pull up a map and see where everyone is. Now is the time to quit asking the, “Where are you?” question.
Mileage Tracking: You can also track mileage traveled for yourself and individuals on your team. If you need to reimburse employees for mileage traveled, this will certainly be the app for you.
Scheduling: Managing shift schedules with paper can be a chore and Timeero can definitely help get rid of paper schedules. Once a shift is created, the employee assigned the schedule gets notified about the newly assigned shift. They can then choose to accept or decline a schedule shift.
Multiple Ways to clock in: You can clock in using the Timeero mobile apps, the Timeero Terminal Kiosk tablet app, through the web app and via SMS text.
Timeero has a lot of robust time tracking components. It is feature-rich if you are looking for a solution to do more than simply time tracking. From time tracking to scheduling, mileage and location tracking, you will have all you need to successfully manage your freelance business and workforce.
It does not have a Google chrome extension like some of the other apps out there.
Time doctor is a time tracking app for freelancers and office workers. The Time Doctor website is unique. When you first visit, it asks:
Do you manage other people?
Does your team sometimes work from home?
Do you think other people could be more productive?
Would you like to try out Time Doctor?
Based on the questions on their website, Time Doctor is geared towards freelancers and managers who work from home or have a team that works from home.
The Time Doctor app, like most apps, touts your typical time tracking features such as time management, reporting, tracking clients etc. The features that stand out the most are “Screen Monitoring” and “Employee Monitoring”.
With screen monitoring, screenshots of employee monitors are captured at specific time intervals. This allows you to monitor exactly what your team is doing. Screenshots are only taken when employees have indicated that they are working. In addition it helps eliminate privacy concerns that your employees may have.
The employee monitoring aspect also returns a variety of useful reports such as “Websites and applications used”. This way, employers can have gain insight into how their employees are spending their time during work hours.
Time Doctor also captures minute details such as keyboard and mouse activity. It is able to check for idle time when the keyboard and mouse are not being used.
Pros and Cons
Time Doctor can be ideal for teams that want to track their remote sedentary employees who work behind a computer most of the time. It provides the kind of insight you would get when sitting right next to someone working behind their computer.
Even though we are huge proponents of time management and time monitoring, we think Time Doctor can be extremely invasive. It has a very big brother feel to it when compared to others. There are obvious advantages and a need for this kind of screen monitoring technology. If you are looking for this level of monitoring then look no further than Time Doctor.
The pricing of these different products are different. A cheaper price does not equate mean an inferior product. There are different business model and pricing dynamics at play. If you are looking for a product with a free plan, then you may want to consider Harvest, even though the free tier is not feature-rich at all.
The choice is yours
There are many time tracking solutions on the market for all sorts of businesses. If you are looking to simply log your clock in and out times, there are a myriad of apps out there that can help with that.
However if you are looking for more out of a time tracking solution, then you may will want to consider many of these above solution. We hope these reviews were helpful.