The 6 Best Time Tracker Apps: Why Timesheet Apps Matter?

time tracker app

Time tracker apps are powerful digital tools designed to help individuals and businesses efficiently manage and monitor their time allocation. 

These apps enable users to precisely record, track, and analyze their work hours, tasks, and projects. 

Automating the time tracking process eliminates the need for manual record-keeping and offers features like reporting, billing, and productivity analysis. 

Time tracker apps are invaluable for optimizing productivity, enhancing project management, and gaining valuable insights into how time is spent, making them an essential asset for small business owners.

Why Should Small Business Owners Use Time Tracker Apps?

For several reasons, small business owners should embrace time tracker apps as indispensable tools. 

  • These apps empower owners to gain granular insights into employee performance, enhance project management, and improve resource allocation. 
  • By tracking time effectively, they can identify bottlenecks, optimize workflows, and make informed decisions that drive growth and profitability. 
  • Time tracker apps also simplify payroll processing, reducing errors and ensuring accuracy. 

Here are the top three time tracker apps you can instill in your business right away:

1. Buddy Punch: Buddy Punch stands out as a comprehensive time tracking solution, offering features like GPS tracking, job code management, and geofencing to enhance employee accountability. With user-friendly interfaces for desktop and mobile devices, it caters to businesses of all sizes, making it a top choice for US-based entrepreneurs seeking efficiency and transparency in their operations.

2. Harvest: Harvest excels in simplifying billable hours tracking, invoicing, and payment processing. Its user-friendly experience across various platforms ensures that business owners and employees can seamlessly integrate it into their daily routines, making it a go-to choice for efficient time management.

3. Toggl Track: Toggl Track offers precision in time tracking, with features like background tracking and detailed reporting. It caters to small businesses with its affordability and flexibility, allowing US entrepreneurs to gain insights into time allocation and boost productivity. 

Try Buddy Punch For Free

Why Time Tracking Matters?

Time tracking matters significantly for several compelling reasons.

1. Resource Optimization: By understanding how time is allocated across various tasks and projects, owners can identify inefficiencies, prioritize high-value activities, and allocate resources more effectively.

2. Productivity Enhancement: Time tracking encourages productivity by creating a sense of accountability

When employees know their work hours are monitored, they are more likely to stay focused and complete tasks efficiently. This boost in productivity can directly impact the bottom line.

3. Project Management: For businesses handling multiple projects, time tracking is crucial for project management. 

It helps estimate project timelines accurately, identify potential delays, and ensure that resources are allocated appropriately to meet deadlines. 

4. Payroll Accuracy: Time tracking simplifies payroll processing. 

It ensures the accuracy in payments for the total employee hours worked, including overtime or special project hours. This reduces payroll errors and boosts employee satisfaction.

5. Performance Evaluation: Time tracking provides valuable data for performance evaluations. 

Managers and team leaders can assess employee productivity, identify areas for improvement, and provide targeted feedback. This data-driven approach to performance management promotes growth and development.

6. Cost Control: Small business owners can identify areas where costs can be reduced by understanding how time is spent on various tasks and projects. 

This can lead to more efficient resource allocation and cost savings.

7. Legal Compliance: In the US, labor laws and regulations require accurate tracking of working hours, especially for non-exempt employees entitled to overtime pay. 

Time tracking ensures compliance with labor laws, reducing the risk of legal issues.

8. Data-Driven Decision Making: Time tracking generates data and insights to inform strategic decisions. 

Business owners can use this data to allocate resources to high-impact projects, adjust staffing levels, and make informed choices about business growth.

9. Work-Life Balance: Effective time tracking can help employees maintain a healthier work-life balance. 

It allows them to track their working hours accurately, which is essential for avoiding burnout and maintaining overall well-being.

Employee Time Tracking SolutionsBest employee time tracking solutions empower business owners to monitor employee work hours accurately, ensuring fair compensation and compliance with labor laws. Moreover, they offer features like overtime tracking and leave management (PTO tracking), streamlining HR processes.
Free Time Tracker AppsIf you’re on a budget, don’t worry; you can utlize free time tracker apps as well. These free apps provide essential time tracking features without the price tag. While they may have limitations compared to their premium counterparts, they can still be beneficial for small businesses looking to manage their time effectively.
Best Time Tracker App for Small BusinessChoosing the best app for time tracking involves considering factors like your specific industry, the size of your team, and your budget. Look for apps that offer scalability, robust reporting, and integration with other business tools (for example like project management tools or invoicing software).
Time Management Apps ComparisonTime management is a critical skill for small business owners. Comparing different time management apps allows you to assess their features, user-friendliness, and compatibility with your business needs. 
Time Tracker App FeaturesUnderstanding the features offered by time tracker apps is essential for making an informed decision. Look for features like GPS tracking, project management, reporting, scheduling, payroll management, and integrations with other software. 
Time Tracking Apps for ProductivityBoosting productivity is a common goal for businesses. Time tracking apps with productivity-enhancing features can help you achieve this goal. Features like task prioritization, reminders, and performance analytics can keep you and your team on track.
Time Tracking Apps for FreelancersFreelancers often juggle multiple clients and projects. Time tracking apps designed for freelancers offer flexibility and customization. They enable you to bill clients accurately, track project time efficiently, and stay on top of your freelance work.
Affordable Time Tracking SoftwareAffordable time tracking software ensures that you get value for your money. Look for transparent pricing plans, free trials, and features that cater to your specific business needs.
Mobile Time Tracking AppsMobile time tracking apps allow you and your team to track time on the go. They sync seamlessly with web-based versions, ensuring you’re always up to date.
Cloud-Based Time Tracking ToolsCloud-based time tracking tools offer the advantage of accessibility from anywhere with an internet connection. They store your data securely in the cloud, eliminating the need for physical servers and ensuring that your time tracking information is always available.
Time Tracking Apps for Remote WorkWith the rise of remote work, time tracking apps tailored to remote teams have become invaluable. These apps offer features like virtual clock-ins, remote employee monitoring, and seamless communication, ensuring that remote work remains productive and accountable.
Time Tracking Apps for TeamsFor businesses with multiple team members, collaborative time tracking apps are a game-changer. They enable team members to track their time individually while providing managers with an overview of the entire team’s progress. 
Time Tracking Apps for AndroidAndroid users have a plethora of time tracking apps to choose from. Look for apps that offer a seamless Android experience, with features optimized for mobile devices. These apps ensure that you can track time efficiently, even when you’re on the move.
iOS Time Tracker App ComparisoniOS users can explore a range of time tracker apps designed specifically for Apple devices. These apps often offer a seamless and intuitive iOS experience. Compare them to find the one that aligns with your business needs and preferences.
Time Tracking Apps with GPSFor businesses that require employees to be on the move, GPS-enabled time tracking apps are a must. These apps allow you to monitor employee locations and ensure that work is being performed at the designated sites.
Time Tracking Tools for Project ManagementProject management is at the heart of many small businesses. Time tracking tools for project management provide essential features like task assignment, progress tracking, and resource allocation.

Time Tracker App Options:

  1. Buddy Punch
  2. Harvest
  3. Toggl Track
  4. Clockify
  5. RescueTime
  6. ZoomShift

1. Buddy Punch: Best Time Tracking Sofwtare

When we set out to create our software for tracking time, we turned to two sources to help inform development:

  1. Our own experience working with clients across a variety of industries. What helped us manage different businesses, what hindered us, and what did we wish we had access to to stay on top of productivity?
  2. What our clients had to say themselves. We wanted to make sure we consulted a variety of different perspectives so that we could create a time tracking app that worked across multiple industries.

What we ended up concluding was that we needed to develop a tool that provided a variety of features, including:

  • Accountability (GPS Tracking, Job Codes, IP Address Locking, and Geofencing)
  • Scheduling (Drag & Drop Scheduling, Punch Rounding, Shift Trades & Shift Covers)
  • Payroll Streamlining (Integrations, Payroll Reports on Demand, and PTO Management)

Which is what we ended up doing – as we’ll explain below.

Note: If you’d like to try out these features instead of reading about them, you can sign up for a free 14-day trial of Buddy Punch by clicking here.

Improve Employee Accountability through Buddy Punch

It can be not easy to foster an environment where employees make the most of their time while on the clock – but it’s still worth the effort as long as you don’t push too far. 

When unfocused, team members cost the business time and money, but if they’re too dedicated to work, their productivity will suffer in the long term.
Managing accountability is an important balancing act for most business owners. Still, Buddy Punch gives you the tools to do so in an empowering way for both team members and managers.

GPS Tracking

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With the GPS Tracking feature, you can keep track of where your employees are even while they’re working remotely. 

When your employees clock in or clock out, their location will be marked on an interactive map where you can view your entire staff if necessary.

Job Codes

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The Job Codes Feature (also known as Department Codes) helps keep your employees accountable for the individual tasks they complete while on the clock. 

With this, team members can designate how they’re spending their time by selecting a job or company while on the clock

They can easily switch to a different code if they complete a task.

IP Address Locking

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Buddy Punch’s IP Address Locking lets you control where your employees punch in. 

Use this feature to specify which IP address(es) your team members can use to log in, limiting them to a specific device or location for security and accountability. 

This configuration will automatically stop an employee who attempts to log in from a different IP address.


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The Geofences feature is a set-and-forget option that helps business owners exercise control without micromanaging their small teams. 
This simple time tracking tool allows you to create a radius (called a Geofence) where employees can clock in. If an employee attempts to log time outside one of these Geofences, they’ll be denied.

Ready to give Buddy Punch a try?

For free trial, no credit card required.

Buddy Punch Helps You Simplify Scheduling

The bigger your team, the more difficult it is to ensure everyone is scheduled correctly. A lack of a solid scheduling strategy can lead to open shifts, worsened productivity, and poor job satisfaction.

Buddy Punch helps remedy this by providing managers and owners with tools to schedule more efficiently. These features can make an airtight schedule or quickly fix issues that arise naturally within just a few clicks.

Drag & Drop Scheduling

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Drag and Drop Scheduling makes it easy for you to organize your employees. 

  • Click on an empty cell in Buddy Punch’s user interface to create a shift. 
  • Then, move it around as needed. 

This shift management option makes it easy to visualize how complete your schedule is, and once you’re done, you can publish the shift to notify all scheduled employees.

Punch Rounding

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Are you planning on using Buddy Punch as a terminal or kiosk? 

When a line of employees shows up to begin time entry, there’s a delay between the first person clocking in and the last person, making the recorded time less accurate. 

A feature like Buddy Punch’s Punch Rounding resolves this, allowing business owners to round punches up, down, or to the nearest interval from 2-30 minutes.

Shift Trades & Shift Covers

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The Shift Trades & Covers feature allows employees, managers, or administrators to initiate shift trades with other employees. 

Additionally, employees can see which shifts need to be filled in and ask for them via the covers feature. 

This means that business owners with proactive employees can let them automate their scheduling.

Streamline the Payroll Process with Buddy Punch

Running a payroll can be a hassle for any business owner. Managing every employee’s time and paid time off quickly adds up to the more significant your team is.

Buddy Punch has advantageous features to help alleviate some of this struggle. You’ll be able to calculate time accurately, subtract any paid time off used, and drastically cut down on human error or discrepancies. 

You and your team members will benefit from these functions’ transparency and accuracy.

Payroll Integrations


Buddy Punch’s Payroll Integration simplifies transferring your data for billing, invoicing, and payroll. 
We work directly with some of the most popular Payroll Software, such as Zapier, QuickBooks (or QuickBooks Time), ADP, and more. Click here to view the complete list.

Payroll Reports on Demand

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Part of Buddy Punch’s Customizable Reports feature is the option to export your Payroll information. 

Your employees, their hours, overtime, location, departments, and more are available in this detailed report. 

Depending on your preferred format, you can export this as an Excel CSV or PDF.

PTO Management

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Buddy Punch’s PTO Management transforms how you handle paid time off. You can even create custom PTO types as you need.

Furthermore, you can allow your employees to take a self-service approach to PTO. Usually, when an employee requests time off, business owners are notified about the leave request and send an automatic notification in return with their decision to approve or deny.

With Buddy Punch, you can enable employees to automatically be approved when requesting time off, whether it’s vacation, sick, or personal leave. This level of hands-off team management can be a big boost for employee morale.

There’s More That Makes Buddy Punch One of the Best Time Tracking Apps Available

Believe it or not, we’ve only touched on a few ways Buddy Punch empowers business owners.

Buddy Punch is available as a Desktop app (for Windows or MacOS) but functions just as well on smartphones (Android or iOS) or tablets. Additionally, there are numerous out-of-app benefits to using Buddy Punch as well:

  • Our Help Doc Center contains valuable articles on best utilizing our software to improve your business management.
  • Our Blog Section is consistently updated with new guides comparing software, breaking down practices and laws, and providing greater insight into the small details that help take businesses to the next level.
  • Our Customer Support is always available to answer questions via live chat.

And speaking of customer support, if you want a personalized walkthrough of the software, you can book a one-on-one demo here.

Buddy Punch’s Online Reviews

As of the writing date, Buddy Punch has 4.8 out of 5 stars and 693 reviews on Capterra.

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Below, we’ll take a look at both the pros and cons that users noted about Buddy Punch, to get a full understanding of how our software is impacting the average business owner.

(Click here to explore the complete list of reviews.)

Pros: Very easy for employees and administrators alike to track time and edit if necessary. Provides accountability for our employees with the location settings such as GPS/Geofence. Provides a variety of reports that are helpful. Provides our employees with mobility–we can send them to any job site, and they have the ability to punch in/out.
Cons: Would like a report that provides a daily snapshot, chronologically, of who punched in/out and at what time. If this exact report exists, I have not been able to find it.”

Click here to read the full review.

Pros: Buddy Punch is easy to set up and use. Once staff is set up in Buddy Punch they are able to manage their time cards with min assistance. We have used the facial recognition and the scan code- The facial recognition works the most consistently. It is pretty self explanatory for staff to be able to put in PTO for approval and add notes if they need a time adjustment because they forgot to time in or out.
Cons: When an employee needs to be removed from the active payroll it takes a few weeks for the persons name to be moved to the inactive list. We tried using the QR codes for timing in and out but the staff would forget their card, the computer would not recognize the card or if their was a poor light, it would be difficult to get it read.”

Click here to read the full review.

Pros: I love how easy it is to access help on any aspect of using the software. You can do their chat and they respond almost immediately. They will even help fix anything from their end if you need the help. I love the facial recognition feature and other features that are offered to ensure that your staff is on the job site in order to sign in.
Cons: I would like to see more options for PTO reporting. I feel that the report for overall PTO has too much info. I would like to see it have an option where you can check off which items you need in the report and then produce the report from what you actually need. It is hard to manage what they offer. ”

Click here to read the full review.

Pros: The software has all the features that I currently was using in my spreadsheet – but better as it took human error out of the equation! I gained the reports that tallied PTO (vacations, sick time, personal time) which I had to pull manually from a spreadsheet. Employees are able to enter their own PTO requests (again a time saver). The chat staff has been super helpful to me every single time I have messaged them.
Cons: Although they are able to answer every one of my many questions; it would have been helpful to download a readable document for reference.”

Click here to read the full review.

As these reviewers noted, Buddy Punch is easy to use and has an incredibly attentive customer support team.

Try Buddy Punch for Free  

Ready to start a free trial?

No credit card required, all features included.

If you feel that Buddy Punch might be the right employee time tracker software for your business, sign up for a free trial. You can also book a one-on-one demo, or view a pre-recorded demo video.

2. Harvest

Harvest as an intuitive and simple time track software with features including (but not limited to):

This is an easy time tracking app to use on Windows, Mac, and Linux, and it also works with mobile and tablet devices (as does Buddy Punch). As of this post’s writing date, Harvest has 4.6 out of 5 stars and 501 reviews on Capterra.

“Everyone in the agency from me, the owner, to all of our team members love using Harvest. It’s so easy to use, between the desktop version to the mobile app. It’s been a lifesaver to make keeping track of time and budgets for our marketing agency.” 

Click here to read the full review.

3. Toggl Track

Toggl Track is a software that small business owners can use for free time tracking if they have less than 5 employees. Otherwise, any of its users get to enjoy automatic time tracking features such as:

At the time of this post’s writing, Toggl Track has a total of 1854 reviews on Capterra (see here), with an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars.

“Tracking and using the time most efficiently is an essential task for any business. And Toggl helps us achieve that. It easily integrates into our daily workflow. Using Pomodoro brakes not only helps at being more effective at what we do but also keeps the team more fit by taking those necessary brakes.”

Click here to read the full review.

4. Clockify

Clockify is an extremely popular time monitoring app, largely because it has a free plan that can be used for unlimited projects and unlimited users (though it restricts features behind the paid plan). Some of Clockify’s total management features include:

Like Buddy Punch, this time management tool can be used on Android, iPhone, or Desktop devices as a web app. At the time of this post’s writing, Clockify has a rating of 4.7/5 stars on Capterra, based on 4185 reviews.

“Clockify has helped my team get our projects organized for quite some time. We enjoyed the free version for a little over a year before we started opting for the paid version since we want to take advantage of some of the paid features such as automation, API integration, templates, and other productivity features to further improve our operations.”

Click here to read the full review.

5. RescueTime

If you want to be completely done with manual time tracking methods, RescueTime is an automatic time tracker that is considered one of the best. This tool has a different approach than most other time trackers, with a more personal feel, though it also has a Teams version for workplaces.

As of this post’s writing, RescueTime has garnered a total of 128 reviews and 4.6 out of 5 stars on Capterra. Here are just a few of its key features and functionality:

“No brainer- install it with no configuration, and you instantly get personalized and valuable weekly reports. Works on windows/mac/linux/android/iphone so can be used by anyone in company or any external team. Excellent user-interface, very easy to customize to each user’s specific goals if they choose to do so.”

Click here to read the full review.

6. ZoomShift

ZoomShift is a work scheduler that helps with time and task management. Here are just a few of its key features and functionality:

ZoomShift has a 14-day free trial that you can begin without a credit card required. As of this post’s writing, it has a total of 94 reviews and 4.5 out of 5 stars on Capterra. 

“Pros: First, it’s very easy to add staff, to make schedules, and do copy schedules to following pages. The fact it has an app is a huge advantage. Also, the summary of the hours each work is really important for us because we have caps of how much we can schedule each employee. Also, the notes are great!”

Click here to read the full review.

Implementation Of Time Tracker Apps: From Purchase to Prosperity

Once you’ve chosen the perfect time tracking app for your small business in the US, the journey from purchase to prosperity begins. 

Here’s your roadmap to ensure a smooth implementation.

A Step-by-Step Guide to Getting Started With Time Tracker Apps

Getting started with your chosen time tracking app is a straightforward process. 

  • Begin by creating accounts for your team members and customizing settings to align with your business needs. 
  • Set up your projects, tasks, and hourly rates to accurately reflect your operations. 
  • The app’s user-friendly interface will guide you through this initial setup, ensuring a seamless transition.

Training Your Team for Success

Effective implementation hinges on ensuring that your team is well-versed in using the time tracker app. 

  • Provide comprehensive training to your employees, highlighting the app’s features, functionalities, and the importance of accurate time tracking. 
  • Address any questions or concerns to build confidence and ensure everyone is on the same page. 

Navigating the First Month: Tales from the Trenches

The initial month of using a time tracking app may come with a learning curve, but it’s also a period of discovery and improvement. 

  • Encourage your team to share their experiences and insights as they adapt to the new system. 
  • Identify any challenges or areas that require adjustments and collaborate with your team to find solutions. 

Celebrating Your Achievements: Realizing the Rewards

As you progress with your time tracking app, celebrate your achievements. 

  • Review the data and insights generated by the app to identify areas of improvement and success stories. 
  • Recognize and reward employees who consistently meet or exceed productivity targets. 

As you gain a deeper understanding of your business’s time allocation, you’ll discover opportunities for growth and efficiency. 

Celebrating these accomplishments reinforces the value of time tracking and motivates your team to continue striving for excellence.


What are Time Tracker Apps?

Time tracker apps are digital tools that help individuals and businesses monitor, record, and analyze time allocation to tasks, projects, and activities. They streamline time management, enhance productivity, and offer valuable insights.

Why should small business owners use Time Tracker Apps?

Small business owners benefit from time tracker apps by optimizing resource allocation, enhancing productivity, simplifying project management, and ensuring accurate billing and payroll. These apps are essential for efficiency and competitiveness in the US market.

How do I choose the right time tracking app for my business’s unique needs?

Selecting the right app involves evaluating features, pricing, user-friendliness, and scalability. Consider your business’s size, industry, and specific requirements to make an informed choice.

Are these time tracking apps user-friendly for both employees and managers?

Yes, most time tracker apps prioritize user-friendliness, offering intuitive interfaces for employees and managers alike. Training and support are usually provided for a smooth user experience.

Can I try these apps before committing to a purchase?

Yes, many time tracker apps offer free trials or demos. Take advantage of these opportunities to explore the app’s features and determine if it suits your needs.

What are the pricing options for these time tracking tools, and are there any hidden costs?

Pricing structures vary, including free, subscription-based, and tiered plans. Ensure you understand the pricing model and any potential additional costs before committing.

How do these apps address remote work needs, a common trend among US businesses?

Time tracking apps often include GPS tracking, mobile compatibility, and cloud-based access to accommodate remote work arrangements, supporting US businesses’ evolving needs.

Do these apps offer mobile versions for on-the-go business management?

Many time tracking apps provide mobile versions compatible with Android and iOS devices, enabling convenient on-the-go time tracking and management.

What kind of customer support can I expect when using these time tracking apps?

Time tracker apps typically offer customer support through various channels like email, live chat, and knowledge bases. Responsive customer support is vital for addressing any issues or questions.

Are there any success stories or case studies from US businesses that have benefited from these apps?

Many US businesses have shared success stories and case studies showcasing the positive impact of time tracking apps. These stories highlight improved productivity, streamlined operations, and business growth.

Try Buddy Punch for Free  

Try Buddy Punch For Free

If you feel that Buddy Punch could be the best work time tracking app for your business, sign up for a 14-day free trial. You can also book a one-on-one demo, or view a pre-recorded demo video.

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