7 Best Time Clock Manager Apps (2024)

7 Best Employee Time Clock Apps for Managers (In-Depth Look)

In this post, we look at 7 different time clock managers, including:

  1. Buddy Punch 
  2. Connecteam
  3. ClockIt
  4. Clockify
  5. Sling
  6. When I Work
  7. Hubstaff  

These are time clock apps and software platforms that you and your team can use to clock in and out for work, track hours worked (along with paid time off), write and follows schedules, and even issue payroll. 

At the end of the post, we also provide an in-depth guide to finding the best time clock management system for you.

1. Buddy Punch

High-Level Overview: How Our Employee Time Clock App for Managers Works

Here are some of Buddy Punch’s key features as a time clock manager.

  • Increase employee accountability and prevent time theft. Managers can optionally activate accountability-related features such as:
    • Geofencing: Employee punches are restricted to a designated location.
    • IP Address Locking: Employee punches are restricted to a designated Wi-Fi network or device.
    • Photos on Punch: Employees are required to take a photo when they submit a punch. 
    • And more…
  • Save time on payroll and eliminate errors. We offer payroll-related features such as:
    • On-Demand Payroll Reports: Our software automatically calculates employee hours.
    • Payroll Provider Integrations: Transfer time from Buddy Punch to your payroll provider in a couple of clicks and avoid manually inputting hours.
    • Buddy Punch Payroll: All your payroll needs in one place, including direct deposits to employees, tax filings and payment, and more.
    • Time Off Tracking: Employees can easily send time off requests to managers. Also, Buddy Punch automatically calculates paid and unpaid time off hours, and you can download an Excel report which contains this information. 
    • And more… 

From a bird’s eye view, Buddy Punch works in the following way:

1. Employees use their preferred device (such as a smartphone, tablet, or computer) to quickly and easily punch in and out.

Buddy Punch on multiple devices.

2. Our software automatically calculates regular employee hours, time off, overtime, and more.

This saves you significant time on payroll (no more manual calculations and data entry), and you can download a PDF or Excel report which contains this information, as pictured below:

Payroll spreadsheet.

Features to Increase Employee Accountability and Prevent Time Theft

Below, we’ll cover several accountability-related features which you can optionally activate based on your business’s needs.

Note: We’re always happy to help via live chat. You can also book a one-on-demo call, where we’ll learn about your goals, and guide you on how to best use Buddy Punch. In addition, we invite you to sign up for a free trial.

Geofencing

Customize geofence.

Geofencing increases accountability by restricting the location from which employees can punch in and out.

How does it work?

Simply enter the geofence parameters (e.g., 500 feet within 123 Santa Monica Boulevard), and if an employee attempts to submit a punch while they’re outside of work, they’ll receive an error message (pictured below), and be asked to try again within 500 feet of 123 Santa Monica Boulevard.

Geofence error message.

This eliminates time theft and ensures employees are punching in only when they arrive at work.

Note that you can also create multiple geofences, which is particularly useful for multi-location businesses.

IP Address Locking

Customize IP address lock.

With IP Address Locking, you can specify a device at your business location, such as a computer or iPad, from which employees are required to punch in and out from.

You can also restrict punches to a designated Wi-Fi network at the workplace. (If an employee were to attempt to punch in outside of work via our mobile app, they’d receive an error message, and be asked to try again when they’re physically at the workplace and their phone is connected to the designated Wi-Fi network.)

Photos on Punch 

Photo on punch feature.

Previously, we published an article that details how to prevent buddy punching.

One of Buddy Punch’s most useful features for this purpose is Photos on Punch, which as the name implies, requires that employees take a photo whenever they punch in and out.

Managers can view all the photos at once via a central dashboard, and ensure 2 things:

  1. The right employee punched in (versus a coworker who did so in their place).

  2. The employee punched in at the correct location (which managers can verify by viewing the photo background).
Photo in payroll spreadsheet.

Other Features to Increase Employee Accountability

There are several other accountability-related features that we did not mention thus far, which include GPS Tracking, Facial Recognition Punching, PIN Punching, Punch Limiting Rules, and more.

Note: We’re always happy to help via live chat. You can also book a one-on-demo call, where we’ll learn about your goals, and guide you on how to best use Buddy Punch. In addition, we invite you to sign up for a free trial.

Features to Save Time on Payroll and Eliminate Errors

Below, we’ll cover several payroll-related features which you can optionally use based on your business’s needs.

Payroll Reports on Demand 

Payroll spreadsheet.

As we’ve mentioned, our software automatically calculates regular employee hours, time off, overtime, and more. This saves you significant time on payroll (no more manual calculations and data entry), and you can download a PDF or Excel report which contains this information, as pictured above.

Payroll Provider Integrations

Payroll software integrations.

Buddy Punch integrates with the vast majority of payroll providers, including:

Without this feature, you (or someone else) would have to manually transfer time from Buddy Punch to your payroll provider.

But by setting up an integration, the same process can now be done in a couple of clicks. It’s not only faster but more accurate.

Buddy Punch Payroll

Auto payroll schedule.

Many businesses use 2 separate software — one for time tracking (e.g., for employee punch ins) and the other for payroll (e.g., to send direct deposits to employees, handle state and federal payroll taxes, and more).

But with Buddy Punch Payroll, all of the above can be done in one central place. This is more efficient and affordable, and relying on one system for payroll (rather than two) is not only easier for managers, but also employees.

Here’s how it works:

Step 1: Within Buddy Punch’s payroll dashboard, review each employee’s hours, time off, gross and net pay, preferred payment method, and other payroll data:

Payroll summary.

Step 2: After reviewing the payroll data and ensuring everything is in order, click on “Submit Payroll”. We’ll handle the rest and:

  • Send direct deposits to employees and contractors
  • Provide employees with self-service pay stubs
  • Handle the filing and payment of state and federal payroll taxes
  • And more

If you’re interested in using Buddy Punch Payroll to handle all your payroll needs in one place, we cover more details here.

Note: We’re always happy to help via live chat. You can also book a one-on-demo call, where we’ll learn about your goals, and guide you on how to best use Buddy Punch. In addition, we invite you to sign up for a free trial.

Time Off Tracking

Time off summary.

Buddy Punch supports a wide variety of time off tracking needs. For example:

Accruals

Customize accrual rules.

Buddy Punch lets you set up time off accrual rules (either for a single employee or multiple employees), select the accrual frequency, make any edits if needed, and more.

We cover how this feature works in greater detail in this video and help doc article.

See Everything Buddy Punch Has to Offer

View the complete list of Buddy Punch features here, some of which include:

Online Reviews

We’re thankful to have received over 900 reviews and 4.8 out of 5 stars on Capterra, which is a leading online review site.

A good portion of our reviews on Capterra are from managers, and we’ve included some of them below:

“Buddy Punch has been a super efficient business solution for our office. It is very user friendly. The integration with QuickBooks has streamlined our payroll which has been a huge plus. Most importantly to me as the administrator who’s been responsible for the complete set up and training of all staff – the Buddy Punch customer service team has been absolutely outstanding!”

Click here to read the full review.

“We have been using Buddy Punch since 2015. Prior to Buddy Punch we were using an Excel spreadsheet for time keeping. We use Buddy Punch as a time clock for daily in/out and breaks. We use the PTO accrual system and PTO tracker. Buddy Punch is easy to use and easy to figure out. Customer service is responsive. The few times I’ve needed help (very rare) they were super responsive and made sure my problem was completely solved. Staff loves the mobile app. It makes punching in/out easy so staff can punch in as they enter the building because inevitably they will be waylaid with questions before they even get to their computer. Buddy Punch is constantly upgrading and improving. There are many ‘bells and whistles’ that we don’t even use- but it is nice to know they are there if we ever need them. I would recommend Buddy Punch to anyone.”

Click here to read the full review.

“I like that the employees can clock in and out on their phones since we have construction sites where there isn’t a mobile office. It also lets them select the job they are working for so we can have accurate billing. It is helpful for our laborers who are often on multiple projects throughout the day. As an administrator, I like that I can access it from my phone or desktop. I use the feature to filter out the hours based on the job, I like that I can see all the hours worked on a job for the week, and it is totaled up for me. We also use the GPS feature, I like that it shows me where they were when they clock in, in particular if they meant to select a different job and picked one by accident, we can narrow it down by GPS.”

Click here to read the full review.

“Buddy Punch is easy to use and to train employees’ use. There are features we don’t even use that larger companies or ones that do their own payroll processing will find invaluable. We love the accuracy of employee time and PTO tracking.”

Click here to read the full review.

“Best solution to time tracking for our hourly employees, and it keeps me updated when someone forgets to clock out. Also, it allows my employees to make changes if needed, which I can review and approve… Ease of use, for both employees and managers. The phone app with the clock in/out feature makes this the easiest for our company.”

Click here to read the full review.

Sign Up for a Free Trial and/or Book a Demo Call

We invite you to:

2. Connecteam

Connecteam’s features and functionality include, but aren’t limited to:

It’s a great time clock app for managers. As of this writing date, Connecteam has over 320 reviews and 4.8 out of 5 stars on Capterra.

“As a manager, it’s so convenient and way less time consuming to have all these features like vacation approval, exporting timesheets, and capability to upload PDF files etc to update my staff quickly!”

Click here to read the full review. 

3. ClockIt

ClockIt’s features and functionality include, but aren’t limited to:

It’s a great time clock manager app. As of the writing date, it has over 80 reviews and 4.4 out of 5 stars on Capterra.

“Make the whole process of reporting and time and attendance very easy. I can easily manage my team and also report to my manager.”

Click here to read the full review.

4. Clockify

Clockify’s features and functionality include, but aren’t limited to:  

It’s a great time clock software for managers. As of this writing date, Clockify has over 4700 reviews and 4.7 out of 5 stars on Capterra.

“1. Super simple time tracking tool – it’s very easy to use & very quickly anybody can pick it up – useful when onboarding a new employee. 2. Enables effective management of housekeeping tasks for team leads & managers – like attendance, time sheets, etc. 3. Easy tool to bill the hours worked & review time taken on projects and tasks through reports. 4. There is a mobile app as well which enables to track time spent on calls as well – especially when you are a consultant or advisory services provider and spend a lot of time on the phone. 5. You can set up time tracking for specific clients, projects, tasks and assign it to specific employees – this is very granular and comprehensive.”

Click here to read the full review.

5. Sling

Sling’s features and functionality include, but aren’t limited to:  

It’s a great employee time clock app for managers. As of this writing date, it has over 140 reviews and 4.6 out of 5 stars on Capterra.

“The ability to offer shifts to employees and allow them to claim or apply for them is incredible. SMS notifications to employees for their shifts, daily email notifications for managers to know who is working where, allowing staff to call out or switch shifts, apply for time off, set availability, and more.”

Click here to read the full review.

6. When I Work

When I Work’s features and functionality include, but aren’t limited to:

It’s one of the best time clock apps for managers. As of this writing date, it has over 1050 reviews and 4.5 out of 5 stars.

“The site is very easy to understand especially for a software that is so robust. I can’t tell you the value there, but it is so much appreciated. We have saved a lot of time and miscommunications while using When I work. The attendance notifications help me to keep track of where our team is hour-wise on an individual basis and as a whole. It’s nice that I am alerted, one less thing I need to remember to check on. In conjunction with the Forecast reporting, I have a very clear view of the week ahead. The apps are handy, especially from the administration side. I am able to update time clocked hours on the fly, check everyone’s schedule and separate out my own, I can even handle time off requests. I haven’t ever attempted to schedule through the app, although knowing how intuitive everything is through their online site, I would venture to guess it would be a piece of cake. I know our team members enjoy having their schedules and hours readily available in their pocket as well.”

Click here to read the full review.

7. Hubstaff

Hubstaff’s features and functionality include, but aren’t limited to:

It’s one of the best employee time clock apps for managers. As of this writing date, Hubstaff has over 1450 reviews and 4.6 out of 5 stars on Capterra.

“Hubstaff provides online time tracking and monitoring for all of our international contractors. Managers are able to see what their activity and performance looks like, giving them better insight into what is working well. The payroll automation has been one of the biggest benefits as we were running payrolls manually through Wise. The integration has saved us hours on payroll and gives managers better insight into how much their employees are working.”

Click here to read the full review.

Finding the Best Time Clock Manager for Your Business

When looking to set up and improve your time clock management business, you want to consider how you’re currently tracking time and what issues you’re experiencing.

At Buddy Punch, we’ve worked with thousands of small to midsize businesses who struggle to keep accurate time records, to keep their employees honest (i.e., make sure they’re not stealing time), and spend just too much time on physical timesheets, spreadsheets, and juggling multiple systems (one for time tracking, one for PTO, and one for payroll).

So it makes sense that we made Buddy Punch to help solve those issues we kept hearing about. Still, different business models have different needs.

When you’re looking for the best time clock manager for you and your employees, consider:

How Your Team Tracks Time

For example, is your team mostly hourly employees who are clocking in and out for work? If so, are there multiple job sites or are they working at one location?

If you’re working out of one location, you may just want to set up one a simple time clock kiosk. With Buddy Punch, this means downloading the Buddy Punch app to a tablet or computer and having your employees clock in and out from that device.

But there are a few reasons why you may want more than one kiosk. For example, let’s say you have a large team and they all start around the same time, 7am. You don’t want to have to deal with a long line of employees waiting to clock in, making some of them clock in early or clock in late for their shift. Instead, it’d be easier if you had multiple time clock kiosks or if your employees could clock in directly from their phones or work desk. With Buddy Punch, you can do this, and you can also set up advanced clock in features (like Photos on Punch or Geofencing) to make sure the right employee is clocking in at the right time. (That way no one is clocking in on their phone on their way to work.)

An All-in-One Time Management Solution

When you’re looking at time clock managers, keep in mind every aspect of time management, ranging from writing schedules to clocking in and out to taking holidays.

Most companies need to handle all of these aspects of time management, but may be using different tools and platforms to get the job done.

It’s easier and often more affordable to simply use an all-in-one time management solution. That means a tool that offers:

  • Time tracking
  • Scheduling
  • Paid time off
  • Payroll 

This way you don’t need to reconcile data across multiple platforms or pay for multiple accounts. And if you’re getting bigger, and starting to need more HR-related tools, then consider finding an HR platform that has the time manager features you need.

Sign Up for a Free Trial of Buddy Punch and/or Book a Demo Call

We invite you to:

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